Living in Colombia

You are living in Colombia, or you used to live in Colombia.

Share your experience!

How would you describe life in Colombia?

Has it been complicated to settle down, to find an accommodation and a job?

Is it complicated to make friends in Colombia?

What would you recommend to people who would like to live in Colombia?

Thanks in advance for your participation

I have lived in Colombia for 3.5 years now. I live in Bogota, in Santa Barbara (a couple of blocks down from Centro Santa Ana) but have lived in El Retiro (a couple of blocks from Centro Andino) and in La Macarena (a few blocks up from Plaza de Toros). I like that it is pretty green here and there are lots of good restaurants, all kinds of entertainment and good schools. Our daughter goes to one of the best schools in the country. Though she has Down Syndrome, the board made a special policy to have a pilot program to admit kids with learning disabilities. It has been a great experience for all of us! Bogota has much to recommend, but also some things that really annoy over time: Bad air pollution, noise pollution and terrible traffic - Egypt and Peru are two of the only countries where it is worse. Colombians are usually very polite, but on the roads they have NO consideration for anyone else and follow no rules. Colombians are very close to their families, and if you marry a Colombian you are very definitely marrying the whole extended family. Your Colombian spouse will want to spend ALL weekends and holidays with his or her parents and brothers and sisters and grandparents and aunts and uncles. And he or she will call them constantly about everything when you are not with family. There are few house here - most living options are brick facade apartments that are very stark and modern in interior design. And no matter how nice they look and how expensive they are, you WILL have problems. Plumbing upstairs will leak, walls will crack and - we had this experience right after moving here: the carbon monoxide from the gas (after we used the gas), leaked into the apartment since it was not vented to the street. Our whole family ended up in the hospital. This was in one of the best areas of town! So, beware of these kinds of things.

I agree with most of what Andrea la Burniske says above. Medellin is a very compact city and apartments are everywhere. Since we live in a house I can't really comment on the problems of apartment dwelling.

Family is very important here. This is one of the things I like about this culture. Also, at least where we live in Medellin, neighbors are important. We are in one of the older parts of town and have had our house for +/- 25 years (we moved down here permanently about 2 years ago). Being known by the folks nearby is very helpful and makes a walk down to the Metro an opportunity to say hi and catch up on what is going on in the area.

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