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What It Looks Like to Bike the World's Longest Urban Downhill Race

by Matador Creators May 26, 2023

Peñón de Guatapé, also known as El Peñol, is a giant rock formation located in Antioquia, Colombia. It’s a popular tourist destination due to its geology, stunning views, and rich history. But perhaps most famously, it’s known for its staircase of over 700 steps, which must be climbed to reach the top for panoramic views.

One of the most exciting events held at Peñón de Guatapé is the downhill race. Every year, thrill-seekers gather to race down the winding roads of the town and experience an adrenaline rush like no other. Needless to say, so not try this unless you’re a professional biker (and even then, you probably shouldn’t try it).

@matadornetwork Check out @ferreira001 and his death-defying plunge down the stairs in #Medellín, #Colombia 🇨🇴 He was taking part in the longest urban descent race in the world, reaching speeds of up to 40 mph 🙌 #urbanbiker #urbanbiking #adrenalinerush #daredevils #colombiatravel ♬ original sound – Matador | Travel + Adventure

The Peñón de Guatapé has a fascinating history dating back to the 1940s, when the Colombian government commissioned a staircase to be built so that people could reach the top views at the top. However, before the staircase was completed, a group of locals climbed to the top using only primitive tools, such as sticks and ropes. Today, visitors can sumit the rock formation through a combination of these original methods and the modern-day staircase.

Once you do reach the top, visitors can take in the stunning views and have their picture taken with a nearby cross, a nod to the Catholic religion ingrained in Colombian culture. The small gift shop at the top of the Peñón de Guatapé sells souvenirs such as t-shirts, hats, mugs, and prints depicting the the lake and town. When visiting Peñón de Guatapé, visitors can also explore the town itself, which is known for its bright and colorful buildings. Roaming around the town square is a great way to get a taste of Colombian culture and history.

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