San Andres de Pisimbala is a small village and there are not many places to eat. After walking around between the archaeological sites the whole day I really was in need of a good meal. I had seen Restaurante La Portada earlier and went there. The chairs were on the tables so I was affraid it was closed. But no, they had been cleaning and could cook me a meal.
I got beef, French fries, rice, salad and a fresh blackberry juice. It all tasted very good, and it was cheap, 3500 pesos. Highly recommended!
There is one direct bus from the village San Andres de Pisimbala to Popayan and it leaves every morning at 6am. Later you can always go to La Cruz and take another bus from there.
I wanted to take the direct bus at 6am and was at the corner well in time. At 5.50 a chiva (the old open colourful buses) came and I was told to go with that bus. We often stopped and more people or just vegetables and other things came on the bus. When the young man who collected money (3000 pesos) came climbing on the outside of the bus I asked him again where I should change buses and the answer was "up there". I soon found out why there was no direct bus that morning. The heavy rain during the night had washed away the road just before Inza. We left the chiva and I was very glad I had put on my boots that morning because it was very muddy. One man was there with his wellington boots to rent to women with sandals.
On the other side of the landslide the bus for Popayan was waiting. I put my luggage in the bus and we were waiting until 7. Then there came another bus heading for Popayan. a small better bus than the one I had put my luggage in. Well, I thought, my bus would probably take a longer time to reach Popayan, but not too long. We went to Inza and stopped at the square. I saw the other bus leave and we were staying. Peple were eating and shopping and we did not leave until 7.40. The road was a narrow unpaved road. After one hour on the road we caught up with the other bus that was standing still. The men from that bus were out fixing the road. They had almost finnished and we could continue.
After that we stopped at a restaurant where most passengers ate and I had a soup. We also stopped at a few shops as some of the passengers wanted to buy things and there was also a military control when everybodies identification card was controlled . At 12.10 we were at the terminal in Popayan. The price for the bus ticket was 12 000 pesos (July 2008).
It was a journey I enjoyed very much.
They called from Hotel Berlin to check when buses were leaving La Plata for Tierradentro (San Andres) the next day. Buses were going to leave at 6.30, 10.30, 13.00 and 16.00. I was told I did not have to go to the terminal but could take the bus from a corner somewhere.
Well, I was ready quite early in the morning and decided to take a taxi to the terminal and take the bus from there, just to be sure I would not miss it. On the way to the terminal we met an old bus and I looked for a sign, but could not see one. At the terminal, where I was well in time for the 6.30 bus, it turned out it had allready left the terminal and I got a ride with a jeep back in to town where the bus was (the same bus I had seen on the way to the terminal). The ticket was 8000 pesos (July 2008). Along the way we stopped many times for people to get on and off or just to pick up or leave things. After 2,5 hours we arrived at the village San Andres de Pisimbala.
I was going to stay in the village, but if you plan to stay near the museums the bus pass that place about 5 minutes before the village.