Colombia is a country of dizzying variety. This tour will introduce you to the fascinating blend of adventures offered within Colombia’s borders. You’ll see some of Colombia’s most important cites, such as bustling Bogotá, the enchanting city of Cartagena, the colonial Villa de Leyva and quaint Coffee Triangle. You will be introduced to the unique landscapes and colours of the the Colombian Caribbean and the Coffee Region, home to Colombia’s national tree, the wax palm. You can learn how Colombian coffee is made, from picking the very first beans to pouring the perfect cup. You will wander the desolate beaches of Tayrona National Park, where palm trees sway in the breeze and turquoise waters lap the golden Caribbean shores. All this and much, much more on your trip to Colombia with See Colombia Travel.
Day 1. Bogota
Upon arrival one of See Colombia Travel´s representatives will be on hand to transfer you to your chosen hotel where you can prepare for your upcoming adventure with us.
Day 2. Bogota - City Tour
This is a six-hour excursion that visits the colonial area of La Candelaria, the historical center of the city. It is in the oldest part of the capital, where you’ll find museums, restaurants and cultural institutions. Afterwards we visit the Bolívar Square at the heart of the city and surrounded by buildings of various styles and from various periods, such as the Cathedral, the Chapel of El Sagrario, the Cardinal’s Palace and the Capitolio or Congress Building. Behind the latter is the Nariño Palace, home of the president. We continue to the Quinta de Bolívar. Once a colonial mansion of great architectural value, it is now converted into a museum that houses documents and objects that belonged to Simón Bolívar. Afterwards we will go to the Gold Museum (closed on Mondays), where we will find a collection of more than 36,000 pieces of pre-Columbian manufacture; being the only display of its kind in the world. Finally, we will take a cable car to visit Monserrate for a fantastic view of the city. This tour can be exchanged for a bike tour of La Candelaria. Meals: B.
Day 3. Zipaquira. Salt Cathedral of Zipaquira and 'El Dorado' Sacred Lake of Gutavita
Today we will visit the salt mines of Zipaquira, from where the monumental Salt Cathedral of Zipaquira was excavated. This unique structure is almost 400ft deep and it occupies an area of around 8000m², with four sections, each one 300ft long and 42ft wide. It presents 12, 30ft high impressive salt columns that support the structure. In the first tract of the underground journey, you will find the XIV Stations of the Via Cruxis, each designed by a local artist. Subsequently, a 175 meter long ramp descending to the last 13 meters towards the balconies on the cameras and the church choir. The final tract leads to the center of the Cathedral where we find the three monumental cameras and the 16m tall cross. Return to Bogota.
After visiting the salt mines, as an optional activity, we’ll continue to the Lake of Guatavita, where the legend of El Dorado originates. According to this legend, in the pre-Columbian days the Indians held special religious ceremonies in which the Chief (Cacique), with his body totally covered with gold dust, was submerged in the lake as an offering to their gods, while the natives threw precious stones and gold pieces into the lake. In 1967 the area, including the old village, was flooded, forcing the construction of a new town in a style that resembles the old Spanish colonial architecture. Return to Bogota. Meals: B.
Day 4. Bogota – Armenia
Transfer to airport for your journey across Colombia. Upon arrival, you will transfer to your specially chosen finca where you can relax in a unique way for your upcoming adventures. Meals: B.
Day 5. Cocora Valley
At the prearranged time the expedition begins, heading to Salento and the Cocora Valley. It holds within it a colonial and historic past, as you will see as you walk amongst the unique landscapes, observing the flowing clear water of the Quindio River, and the unique palm of wax the national tree.
Salento and in general the Coffee Triangle, has one of the richest coffee cultures and most scenic coffee crops. It has preserved its colonial architecture and the customs of the local country people. Furthermore, it’s an ideal site for hiking or horseback rides followed by a meal of exquisite trout, the prized local dish. As an optional activity, we’ll take you to Santa Rosa, home of the famous hotsprings for a relaxing end of day. Meals: B.
Day 6. Coffee Experience and Tasting
HDuring the Cultural Coffee Experience tour, where you will gain a unique insight into the real lives of the coffee workers. This tour allows us to learn the fantastic and mystical history of the coffee growing culture and the colonization of Antioquia. From the coffee corps we will continue to the Joyful Harvest, where you can wear traditional outfits and harvest, pulp, dry, roast and ground your own coffee as the locals have done since colonial times. Then, after a great day at work you can sit down and enjoy a fantastic cup of the best Colombia Coffee, specially processed and made by you, for you! At the chosen time, land transfer to Medellin through the beautiful “Autopista del Cafe” (Coffee Motorway). Meals: B.
Day 7. Medellin. City Tour & Pablo Escobar is History
A 5 hour trip, that uncovers the roots of Medellín and its most iconic symbols, such as the “Pueblito Paisa”, the Intelligent Building, the Plaza Mayor, the Administrative Center of La Alpujarra and Carabobo street. We will travel in the “Metro Cable”, a massive transportation system unique to the city, and visit of the España Library Park and its distinctive architectural structure.
The tour continuous and gives you plenty of information about Pablo Escobar and his legacy, but contrasting the city today with the information you’re given it becomes increasingly clear that Pablo Escobar is well and truly history. You will be taken through the streets of Medellín to the house in which Escobar was hiding shortly before he died, on the roof of the very same building. You’ll be told more information about his life and death and, circumstances permitting, you can go inside to see for yourself how he attempted to escape before the police caught him. The tour ends at Escobar’s final resting place, a cemetery on the outskirts of Medellín. It’s here you can learn more about the complicated legacy the man left behind, as the special grave will suggest. Return to your hotel. Meals: B.
Day 8. Medellin - Santa Marta - Palomino
At the chosen time, transfer to the airport. Upon arrival in Santa Marta one of See Colombia Travel´s representatives will be on hand to transfer you to your chosen hotel in Palomino where you can relax and prepare for your upcoming adventure with us. Meals: B, D.
Day 9 & 10. Playa La Roca EcoHotel
During the next two days enjoy and relax by the sea, sunning yourself and reflecting upon your wonderful journey on one of Colombia’s most beautiful beaches.
During the first day, you will visit the Tayrona National Park (includes entrance).
As optional activities, you’ll be taken for a beautiful hike to a waterfall in the morning. Then, after lunch, you could take a trail to the mouth of the Palomino River or just relax into a hammock with a good book.
Optionally, you will have the wonderful opportunity to go visit a village of the Kogi, descendants of the Tayrona. Here you will have the chance to see how the traditions of the Tayrona people are still present in the everyday lives of the Kogi. Meals: B, L, D on all days.
Day 11. Palomino - Santa Marta - Cartagena
After breakfast, land transfer to Santa Marta and Palomino (about 6 hours) where you will spend the night. Meals: B.
Day 12. Cartagena. City Tour
We take approximately four hours visiting the city, including the modern residential neighborhood of Bocagrande and, later, the Walled City. The Old City maintains all the charm of the colonial days, with its narrow, cobbled streets flanked by charming balconies and heavy, characteristic doors. Our entry is through the Clock Gate, the main entrance to the old town. We visit the church of San Pedro Claver, the oldest church in the city before seeing the Castle of San Felipe – an imposing stone structure regarded as the masterpiece of the Spanish military engineering in the Americas. Finally, the Convent of La Popa is a cloister built on top of a hill that dominates the entire urban complex. Your afternoon is free to enjoy the city. Meals: B.
Day 13. Cartagena. Free Day
Free days to enjoy the city; to get lost in one of the many plazas and coble stone streets and have a drink watching the sunset on top of the city wall. Meals: B.
Day 14. Cartagena - Home.
At the chosen time you will be transferred to the airport for your flight back home. All good things must come to an end, after all. Of course, if 19 days just isn´t enough time in Colombia, our tours are 100% customizable and we´d be happy to extend your stay with us. Just ask for more details. Meals: B.