The Legend of El Dorado unravelled with Arcadia Expeditions

World-first expedition to Colombia, escorted by historian Fernando Cervantes

Fortress of Cartagena | Source: Supplied

Arcadia Expeditions is set to operate a world-first expedition that traces the origins of the El Dorado story through Colombia.

The 11-day ‘Conquistadors: The Legend of El Dorado’ journey visits intriguing sites connected to some of the great expeditions of the Conquest – from Guatavita, the sacred Muisca lake, to an exclusive after-hours private visit and dinner at the famed Gold Museum in Bogotá, where travellers view pre- Colombian masterpieces that fuelled the insatiable gold fever of the conquistadors. The expedition is being led by renowned historian and author, Fernando Cervantes.

Cartagena Old Town | Source: Supplied

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Staying in some of Colombia’s very best luxury hotels, the journey heads off-the-beaten-path to some of Colombia’s most scenic colonial towns and culminates in Cartagena de Indias, the stunning jewel of the Spanish crown. Highlights include visits to colourful local markets, wine tasting at an award-winning vineyard and exclusive meetings with local experts.

David Mannix, Arcadia Expeditions Co-Founder said whilst the El Dorado story is familiar to many, few know where the myth came from and how it took shape.

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“The El Dorado legend began in Colombia during a famous moment in South American exploration when three conquistadors converged on the kingdom of the Muisca near modern-day Bogotá. It was after this meeting that tales of a native ruler arose who coated his body in gold dust in a ceremony on a sacred lake. It became an obsession, luring Europeans to roam South America for two centuries searching for hidden treasures.”

Cartagena streetscape | Source: Supplied

“As an expedition company, we are just so thrilled to tell the story of what we believe are some of the greatest expeditions in history,” Mannix added. “Our travellers will experience these almost unbelievable tales of adventure, heroism and suffering in the company of one of the world’s leading experts on the conquistadors, Fernando Cervantes, who will interpret for us these fascinating moments where the civilisations of the old and new world’s collided.”

Limited to just 16 people, the tour is priced at $US11,750 per person and has two departures: 7-17 September 2022 and 6-16 September 2023. The expedition is also available for private departures.

For more information, go to:

Lake Guatavita | Source: Supplied
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