The entire trip my mom has been retelling stories of her childhood trip to la Piedra del Peñol. It has 659 steps to the top where you can over see Guatape or El Peñol. We planned to go towards the end of our trip because its close enough to Rio Negro (where the airport is).
To give you some background… take this with a grain of salt because tour guides at the Peñol and wikipedia have varying facts
- The rock is located inGuatapé which is right outside El Peñol.
- The rock also goes by El Peñón de Guatapé. It’s a little confusing when you’re trying to type it into Google Maps.
- The rock was first climbed in 1954 by 3 men – Luis Villegas, Pedro Nel Ramirez, and Ramón Díaz – climbed the rock using sicks that were fixed or stuck against the rock. Americas Wikipedia notes this took 5 days but a tour I was ease dropping on said 7 days. Let’s take the average and say 6.
- There are 659 steps to the top. Although again, American Wikipedia will note +700. I can tell you first hand I did not see anything above 659.
- The steps were originally made of wood but now of cement and stone. It seems like they’re making more changes.
- Half way to the top there is a shire for the Virgin Mary. This is pretty typical in South America!
- There is a tower at the top you can climb. Not sure the number of steps – perhaps this where Wikipedia is getting the rest of it. It was unfortunately closed for construction.
- There is a GI painted on the side. I’ve heard 2 stories. The first being the town of Guatapé was painting it but because of the strict environmental laws here, they were forced to stop. The second is both the towns of Guatapé and El Peñol disputed who owned the rock so the town of Guatapé decided to paint their way to ownership. They were quickly met with a mob of people from El Peñol that forced them to stop right as the U was being painted.
Our climb to the top took about 30 minutes with some breaks every few steps. Going down was pretty scary. My mom took a video of me that’s pretty funny.
It is definitely something to you have to see if you like adventure and crazy views!!!