Colombia is on the rise in the world of travel and tourism, with the country providing tourists with more and more reasons to pay a visit. The main attractions include Monserrate in Bogota, Cartagena’s old city walls and the magnificent Pueblito Paisa in Medellin. Sure, these sights are well worthy of a place on any keen traveler bucket list, but amongst Colombia’s tropical coastlines, dramatic mountain landscapes and lush rolling hills – there are many secret spots that remain fairly untouched by tourists.
Pueblo Hopping in Antioquia
Pueblos are small towns usually built around churches, and tourists can make a small trek from one of Colombia’s larger cities to explore what life is like in its more rural areas. Despite these towns being small, you won’t be short of things to do. We’d recommend beginning the day with a hike, exploring the rich and luscious landscapes, before enjoying delicious local specialties at lunchtime. Then, walk around the cobbled streets before spending the evening at a traditional bar. Pueblos offer you a rare chance to immerse yourself in local culture and traditions, make new friends, and see sights you’ll miss out on in the big cities.
El Museo Casa de la Memoria, Medellin
Colombia has a fascinating history that encompasses damage from civil war and narc-terrorism, so it is important for tourists to spend some time getting to know how the country came to be the place they can freely enjoy today. El Museo Casa de la Memoria translates to ‘The House of Memory’. The museum tells some darker tales from the country’s history, including radical left-wing narco-terrorism groups, Pablo Escobar, and the rise of right-wing paramilitary movements. The unique thing about this museum is that it places the emphasis on victims rather than perpetrators, and this has an impactful and often emotive effect.
Climb from the Bogota to La Calera
Colombia’s fantastic countryside, steep peaks and lovely weather make it a great place to explore by foot or by bike. A slightly challenging but widely popular ride is the one from Bogota to La Calera, offering stunning views and a fun way to exercise. Be aware that some of Colombia’s routes travel to places of high altitude, so make sure you give yourself time to adjust and relax. Bike rentals are dotted around popular routes – do a little research beforehand so you can enjoy your ride to the maximum when you get there!
Leticia is located in the south of Colombia and is where you will find thick rain forests, exotic animals and plants. This is a wild and extreme place to visit, and undoubtedly off the beaten track. The best way to get here is to take a flight to Leticia’s capital, and take a pre-booked jungle tour or river tour. This is a safe and fun way to escape civilization and explore the depths of the wilderness. Lucky travelers will get to see sloths, monkeys, rare frogs, snakes and spiders up close and personal.
La Guajira is located on the north-eastern tip of the country, near the border of Venezuela. La Guajira is Colombia’s desert area, offering extremely tough climates and terrain, and very little population. This offers travelers a chance to visit a completely different landscape, have fun on the sand dunes and visit the small local villages. Expect picturesque hikes, and cosy hammocks to watch the sunset from.