“Mompox doesn’t exist. Sometimes we dream about her, but she doesn’t exist” wrote Gabriel García Márquez of this hot, listless, isolated little town on the banks of the Rio Magdelena.
Founded in 1537, Mompox prospered as a port for the transportation of goods upriver into the interior. A royal mint was established and the town became famous for its goldsmiths.
Today, crowds flock to the international jazz festival, held in October each year. For the rest of the year, the town’s inaccessibility keeps visitor numbers low. The few who do make the pilgrimage (usually from Cartagena or Santa Marta), enjoy strolling the colourful streets, motorboat trips up the Magdalena (the birding here is fabulous), and classes in filigree jewellery making.