Home > South America > Colombia > The Lower Magdalena River Valley > Barrancabermeja > Barrancabermeja Activities > The River Train
Page Rating
Content Quality:

Page Importance:
Author Pick:
Close Map

Book a Hotel or Hostel

Hotels Hostels & Budget


Check in Date

Check out Date

Number of Rooms

Top Colombia

The River Train - Other Activity Barrancabermeja - Colombia

“Peto, peto,” Doña Sorelly calls. She opens her milk can, steam from the corn drink escaping into this slightly cool morning. The toot of the autoferro’s horn warns of our imminent passage. We leave Barrancabermeja, entering this new day swaying, occasionally jolting down narrow-gauge tracks. Wheels upon rails sharply clack and rumble as we pass homes with still-sleeping families.

Mango trees scrape our sides. The cloud-silhouetted dawn is just beginning to lighten. In the distance, on the banks of the Río Magdalena, refinery stack smoke and derrick flames billow. Lightning streaks the western sky. A thin rain sheens off bronze cacao leaves. This landscape begins to define itself as waterlilied swamps and stands of bamboo. Cattle rise, the dew and drizzle glistening on their hides. Passengers come, cargo goes. Slowly, these villages and settlements we visit are awakening; stalls are mounted in the light of lamps.

Garzas rise from their trees, white blips winging across the gray sky. There’s a hollow clatter as we cross over bridges above small rivers flowing to that great Río. Workers board, workers leave; it’s just another day of labor. This land, so flat, begins to undulate. The rain ceases, though the day is yet subdued. Thin-limbed, potbellied children stand in their golden-lit doorways, lethargically watching us shudder past.

After Puerto Olaya, the Río Magdalena comes into view. Soldiers patrol the bridge we soon cross. The river glimmers silver and brown beneath us, its sandbars exposed. Swooshing, swaying, clattering past shack homes, we arrive to our destination, Puerto Berrío.


Check the Getting To and Away from Barrancabermeja section for the train’s latest schedule, or call the offices. Tel: 602-7684.

Barrancabermeja, Colombia

Other Activity

Travel Tips:

Relative price: Budget

Travel Skills: None

In Barrancabermeja is the Museo del Petróleo. Near the city is Ciénaga San Silvestre.

Currencies accepted
Colombian Peso

Here are other activities in and around Barrancabermeja that may be of interest: Cienaga San Silvestre,

By Lorraine Caputo

Upon re-declaring her independence at age 29, Lorraine Caputo packed her trusty Rocinante (so her knapsack's called) and began...

10 Feb 2012

Top Places to go in Latin America - as rated by V!VA Members
You must register as an owner for access to these listing tools and benefits.

Notification of new reviews: receive your latest reviews by e-mail

Customized request-a-review link: encourage guests to spread the word about your property

Our owners' newsletter: stay informed about our latest tools and benefits for you

User login

Enter your username and password here in order to log into the website:


Create a new V!VA account

Forgot Password