About Colombia Travel
Bogotá: Colombia’s capital city sits at an elevation of 8,660 feet in the Andino region. With a population of more than eight million, it is a city of contrasts. Century-old plazas and churches coexist with towering skyscrapers, and peaceful tree-lined bicycle paths cut across crowded, frenetic streets. Bogotá is home to internationally recognized universities and regional offices for many multinational companies. Bogotá embraces a variety of cuisine, from traditional dishes (Ajiaco) to sushi to fast food. It is one of the most modern and metropolitan cities in Latin America. El Centro is the historic heart of the city. The northern section of the city is where most modern development has taken place, and combines upscale living spaces with affluent shopping centers, boutiques, cafes and nightclubs. The Gold Museum boasts an astonishing collection of pre-Columbian treasures. From Bogotá, an excursion takes visitors to the Zipaquira Salt Cathedral, a huge underground cathedral built into a rock salt mine. This fascinating underground church has 14 small chapels, representing the Stations of the Cross. Long before the Spanish came here, the natural mines were exploited by the Muisca culture.
Cartagena: Once the Spanish empire’s most important Caribbean port, the city is one of Colombia’s prettiest. The 16th-century walled colonial city and fortress has been designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Cartagena was a major trading port for gold and silver going from the New World to Spain. It was also a slave port and market. The architecture of the old city is mainly Spanish colonial, but there are also Italian and republican styles. The Cathedral of Cartagena dates back to the 16th century. The main entrance to the old city is through Clock Gate in the Square of the Carriages. Nearby is San Pedro Claver Square as well as the Museum of Modern Art. The 18th-century Palace of the Inquisition is an eerie reminder of an especially turbulent period in world history. It exhibits tools used in torture, and a receipt for ransom paid to Sir Francis Drake in exchange for leniency and his pledge to not burn down the city. One of the city’s most remarkable landmarks is a short walk from downtown. The Castillo de San Felipe de Barajas is arguably the greatest fortress the Spanish ever constructed in Latin America. The original was constructed between 1639 and 1657. Extensive later enlargements resulted in what visitors see today… a network of underground tunnels constructed so that it was possible to hear the footsteps of an approaching enemy. Augustinian Fathers Convent is now the University of Cartagena. The Heredia Theater is an architectural gem fronting the Plaza de la Merced.
Santa Marta & Tayrona National Park: Founded in 1525, Santa Marta was Colombia’s first Spanish settlement on Colombia’s Caribbean coast. It boasts a fine natural harbor. Gold was the primary reason the Spanish settled this area. The local Tairona indigenous communities were celebrated for their talents as goldsmiths. The precious items were shipped to Spain via the new port of Santa Marta. Some of the relics are on view in Bogotá as part of the “Treasures from the Museo del Oro” exhibition. Santa Marta is ideally located to discover the Santa Marta mountain range, second highest range in Colombia, and Tayrona National Park, one of the most pristine and scenic coastlines in South America. The park is situated along the Caribbean coast and offers a number of hiking trails as well as beautiful beaches, secluded bays and offshore coral reefs. The park protects some 108 species of mammals and 300 species of birds. The black howler, oncilla, deer, eagle, iguana and more than 70 types of bats are among the park’s typical residents. There are also about 31 species of reptiles, 471 varieties of crustaceans and 401 species of sea and river fish.
Coffee Zone: The city of Pereira stands in the center of the western region of the country in a small valley that descends from a part of the Andes. This is the center of the coffee zone as well as the heart of Colombian culture, which is strongly influenced by the existing plantations. People, places and even nature that can be experienced in this area is unspoiled evidence of Colombia’s traditions. Working coffee plantations allow guests to see the complete process of growing and production – from the planting of the seed to sampling a cup of Colombia’s finest coffee. Valley of the Cocora, a sanctuary in the central Andean mountains, is within easy reach from Pereira. Travelers enjoy a selection of activities here, including hiking, bird watching, game fishing, mountain biking, horse riding and rafting.
Medellin: The Medellin of today is a far cry from just a couple of decades ago. The second largest city in Colombia, this city of more than two million people has undergone a transformation like much of the rest of the country. It is home to half a dozen universities, adding to the vibrant cultural scene and energetic nightlife. Medellin is also Colombia’s largest industrial center, and home to factories that produce everything from designer clothing to cars. A pedestrian walkway encompasses about 30 blocks. Medellin has the only aerial cables connected to a mass metro-type transport system. The city’s architecture includes five large new “Library Parks.” La Ladera, Belén, La Quintana, Santo Domingo, and San Javier Parks are symbols of the urban and social transformation of Medellin. Pueblito Paisa on the Nutibara Hill is a replica of one of the typical Paisa villages of Antioquia, with its colorful houses, church, courtyards, patios, shops and a fountain. Open-air cafes are perfect for people watching. The sculpture garden is dedicated to the work of one of Colombia’s most noted artists, Fernando Botero Angulo. The city has much to offer travelers including excellent regional cuisine, a variety of art and cultural venues and fashionable shopping.
colo,Suggested Colombia Tour Itinerary
Day 1: Arrive Bogotá, Colombia
Day 2: Bogotá
Day 3: Bogotá / Cartagena
Day 4: Cartagena
Day 5: Cartagena
Day 6: Cartagena / Depart
Custom Luxury Travel Options
Santa Marta & Tayrona National Park (4 days)
Established in 1525, the colonial city offers historic and cultural sights while, nearby, Tayrona National Park remains one of the most pristine and scenic coastlines in South America.
Coffee Zone (4 days)
In the western Andes, this is the center of the coffee producing region, where working plantations grow Colombia’s most famous export.
Medellin (3 days)
Colombia’s second largest city enjoys a vibrant cultural scene, an energetic nightlife, excellent regional cuisine, a variety of art and cultural venues as well as fashionable shopping.