Situated near the city of Antioquia, Columbia, the Rock of Guatape (sometimes called just “the Stone”) stands out from the relatively flat countryside, a large black formation, speckled with quartz and mica, which can make the rock sparkle in the right light. It hulks over the flatlands, large and imposing, with a spiral of stairs rising through one of the rock’s massive cracks, towards the top. In the past, the rock could only be climbed by carefully picking your way up one of the sides, using handholds in the stone and vegetation to scale the otherwise smooth face. In the middle of the last century, however, a team built the ascending staircase, so that visitors could rose to the top of the stone and look out at Colombia for one of the country’s most unique features. It is so large and so tall that it took some adventurers over five days to scale the whole thing.
An ancient monument from a bygone era, this massive rock is thousands of years old. It was labeled National Monument by the government of Colombia around the 1940s. Something mystical emanates from this large stone settled in the Colombian countryside. Because of its stark appearance, it was long worshiped and considered sacred space by the local Indian tribes.
Today it stands sentinel over the hydroelectric dam shared by the cities of Penol and Guatape. In a geographic sense, it marks the border between these two cities, and who officially owns the stone has long been a point of contention.
Interested guests who have half a day to spare can take the bus to Guatape and walk the five minutes out to this awesome monolith.
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