It's no secret Medellin, Colombia has some rough history, but it's one thing to read about the history or watch a popular TV show like Narcos than to actually go there and experience the history for yourself.

This week with Medellin Soul Tours I had a chance to experience not only some of the history of Medellin but also the transformation of Medellin. Because even though 20+ years ago Medellin was the most dangerous place in the entire world, today it is known as one of the most innovative cities in the world. Colombians have a way of looking on the bright side of everything and always seeing hope.


Getting to know the Moravia neighborhood

The neighborhood of Moravia is one of the prime examples of the changes that have happened in Medellin. Imagine living right in the middle of this neighborhood 20 years ago with not only violence all around you but also people coming in and dumping all of their trash on your property. Moravia was once the landfill of Medellin. Today this neighborhood is completely different, and in my opinion is the most developed neighborhood in all of Medellin.

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Our tour started off by meeting a local at the neighborhood cultural center. There are quite a few of these centers around the city, but this particular cultural center is special. It is the only cultural center in Medellin where the community wanted the development of it. People donated their houses and the community came together to build this center. Here you can find all sorts of activities for both youth and adults ranging from music, dance to art classes. We got a tour of the cultural center by the daughter of one of the most prestige women in the community. It was amazing to hear her story and to see the development of this neighborhood from images within the center.

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After the guided tour of the cultural center, we were led to the Moravia Route of Hope. This is where I was truly amazed. Remember how I told you that Moravia used to be a landfill? Well, this garden transformed it all, the landfill is still there, underneath all the greenery. This garden is a great example of how Medellin promotes communities and how they want everyone united, another example of how this city views hope.

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Walking through the garden was incredible. Very beautiful, elegant, green, you would never imagine that this city 20 years ago was as dangerous as it was. Children playing all throughout the garden, and a few even came over to say hi as they were amused there was a tourist around. The garden has many pieces of artwork scattered within including the heart of Medellin (not sure if that's the real name, that's just what I named it), apiece by a local artist. I also absolutely loved seeing all the inspirational words on the ground, every few steps you took there was an uplifting word trust, respect, resistance, difference. It was absolutely beautiful.

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House of Memory Museum

After our Moravia neighborhood tour, we went to the House of Memory Museum. This is is such a special and incredible space right in the heart of Medellin. It was explained to me that this is not only a museum but it also serves as a safe house for the locals. A place where people that were hurt, lost family members, or still suffer can go to feel safe and can have protection if needed. What an amazing idea!

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The actual museum was INTENSE. The museum takes you on a journey of the transformation of Medellin and Colombia. From the early days of the war, you can see and hear peoples pain and sorrows. There are films and audios that you can listen to throughout the entire museum and it will really get into your mind. The museum was extremely moving, but it ends on a positive note, it takes you to the current years and you walk out of the museum seeing a big sign reading WE SURVIVE.

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It's incredible to me to see an entire city that has literally lost everything come such a far way. By no means is Medellin at it's 100% after the many years of war, but it has come such a far way. I think a lot of me really loved learning about the history in this country because I too come from a country that has been destroyed to the ground, built up, destroyed once more by war and come a far way. When something tragic happens to your country or even you on a personal level sometimes all you have left to hold onto is hope. This is definitely portrayed in a city like Medellin, no matter what happens to you, wherever you look, you see hope.

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Xoxo Ania Travels?

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Disclaimer: This post was sponsored by Medellin Soul Tours. As always, all opinions are my own. This post contains some affiliate links which will earn me a few cents to contribute to the running of this site if you make a qualifying purchase at no extra cost to you.

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