Jul 29

5 Reasons Why Colombia Costeños Rule.

A Sombrero Vueltiao


Although everybody loves Colombia´s Caribbean coast (just check out last week´s gallery again if you yourself still don´t), sometimes I get the feeling that its inhabitants, generally referred to as Costeños, often get a raw deal. In particular, it sometimes appears that some residents of the two major Colombian cities, Bogota and Medellin, can sometimes have a slight tendency to look down on their coastal relatives. While it´s claimed that Bogotanos have the best Spanish in the world (whatever that can possibly mean), the way Costeños use the language is often regarded as, well… different… if not indeed inferior. Check out this article for the lowdown. And the paisas, famed for their industrious natures, can sometimes be compared to the more easy-going, rumba-loving Costeños, with the former winning out. Am I wrong? Please let me know, because I´d love to be!

Anyway, if there´s any truth in it at all, I want to use this post as an opportunity to refute it once and for all, as the evidence seems to point in the completely opposite direction.

The fact is, my friends, that Costeños RULE. And here are just five reasons why.


Well, what other Colombian has won a

Nobel Prize?


Gabriel García Márquez
And some pretty stunning eyebrows, to boot.


I´ve got four words for you, guys: Gabriel Gar Cia Marquez. I think I could rest my argument right there, really. The Godfather of Colombian Imagination, Gabo´s storied career not only put his country on the literary map, but also the specific coastal environment – and language – he grew up in. You´d have to make a pretty good argument to convince me that Gabo´s literary contribution to Colombia isn´t the most important one of all time. I´m all ears, though.


Shakira, Shakira.


Shakira, super celebrity and expert on the Colombian National Anthem (which btw, was written by another costeño).
Shakira, super celebrity and expert on the Colombian National Anthem (which btw, was written by another costeño).


Um, Shakira´s pretty famous. In fact, name me a living Colombian that´s more famous, and I´ll eat my hat. You know that´s a serious wager, as I love my hat, and said hat is kinda funky. What you might not know is that she hails from Barranquilla, and is thus as Costeña as they come. Don´t let her fool you with her accent.


While we´re on the subject, this lady.


While we´re talking of ladies from Barranquilla with outrageous international fame and hips that have never been known to fib, it would be ridiculous to not mention Sofia Vergara. Her singing voice alone would place her firmly in this list.


Colombian Football Would Be Nowhere Near as Colombian Amazeballs Without Costeños.



One word could suffice for me to make this argument.


It could suffice, but this picture:


´El Pibe´
The man. The legend. The hair.


wouldn´t hurt my claim any, either.


If Costeños never existed, Music in General

Would Be a Sadder Place.


Vives la musica!
Vives la musica!


When I first thought about this category, I was thinking in particular of the aforementioned Shakira, Shakira, and latino music superstar (and notorious Tin Tin fan) Carlos Vives. Then, I realised that El Joe and Toto Momposina both lay claims to being costeños. And then I realised that without the coast, there´d be no cumbia, champeta or vallenato in Colombia. Which means, as far as I´m concerned, that there really wouldn´t be any Colombia. And that, Gentle Reader, would suck.


8 thoughts on “5 Reasons Why Colombia Costeños Rule.

    Nai Freilich on

    Loved the article!! ♥♥ Sadly, you’re so right to say we costeños are look down by pretty much everybody who is not a costeño. Just want to say we’re friendly and welcoming and if you come to visit you’re gonna have the time of your life. Just make sure to mingle with the locals and when you go back to the “real life” you’re probably gonna be hungover, but no doubt you’ll be content, relaxed, HAPPY. You might even end up shouting ¡Guepa je, nojoda! 😉

    I’m loving this blog, all good things about a great country. Btw, Sofia kinda sings. She was Mama Morton from “Chicago” Look her up on YouTube live on Broadway 🙂


      Paul Giles on

      Hey Nai,

      I don`t need *two* invitations to want to head to the beautiful Colombian coast. Hell, I don`t even need one!! I love the place, and the people, and the food. Pretty much everything, really. I expect my ticket`s in the mail?
      I was talking about this very issue of the rest of Colombians looking down on Costeños with a friend of mine from Santa Marta, and she said that everybody else was just jealous. She may well have a point there, what do you think? 😉
      Hey, and I just youtubed Sofia in Chicago, and she actually does have some pipes! Makes her performance in that TV show even more impressive, right?
      Thanks for your comment, Nai! Stay Costeño and proud!!


    Monica on

    Glad to see this blog, thanks to you all for creating a site where others can see the beauty of my country and for sharing your experiences. I am Una Monteriana living in France but been a costeña always.
    La costa, lo mejor!


      Paul Giles on


      You´re right to be proud. You´re in some very famous company! If you want to read some posts in French, stay tuned for contributions from our new writer, Lydia. Coming soon!!


    Bernardo on

    AWesome!!! a little vain but FRIKIN´TRUE!!!


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