Colombia is South America’s new travel hot spot. Tourism in the country is exploding and this once very dangerous country is now safer than ever! For many, the rush to visit the Colombian Highlights, an untouched paradise, is on, and every year visitor numbers are skyrocketing.
As these visitor numbers increase, so is Colombia’s reputation for being a warm and welcoming country filled with some of the most genuine and caring people on the planet.
However, it’s Colombia’s diverse landscapes that make a visit truly unforgettable. From stunning cloud forests to picturesque tropical beaches, Colombia is so much more than what initially meets the eye!
Regardless of whether you come for the culture, food, landscapes, or just to soothe your curiosity, there has been no better time to travel to Colombia.
Here are the best places to visit in Colombia!
Bogota is the heart of Colombia and a city that holds much of Colombia political history. It’s one of the best places to learn about Colombia’s dark past but also look into its bright future. The city offers a huge range of things to do including visiting museums, riding the gondola to Mount Monserrate, trying delicious foods and much more.
Bogota may not be Colombia’s most beautiful city but to truly understand Colombia, a trip to Bogota is necessary!
Salento takes you far away from the big cities and immerses you in Colombia’s rural culture. Here you will find friendly faces from humble beginnings as you walk around this very cute town. However it’s not just the friendly faces that bring tourists here, it’s the coffee. Colombians are famous for it and Salento is one of the best places in Colombia to grow it.
Salento is filled with small coffee shops who have their own unique styles and flavours of coffee. You can head out to one of the many coffee plantations to find exactly how the coffee is grown and made. This has become the most popular thing to do in Salento and definitely a highlight in Colombia.
Located just outside Salento, the Cocora Valley has become famous for its towering wax palms. These very unique palm trees can grow to a whopping 60m high, all while maintaining their extremely thin trunk. In the Cocora Valley, there is a few nature walks and trails that explore the Cocora Valley and give you amazing views of the wax palms, as well as a trail to see some stunning Hummingbirds in flight!
Tayrona National Park
Tayrona National park is arguably one of the most beautiful places in Colombia. This small tropical beach paradise has everything you need for an amazing day at the beach. Your day starts with a short walk through the tropical forest before you reach the ocean. Once there, you can walk along the coast via a flat trail until you find a beach to your liking.
At the beaches, you can buy fresh coconuts and swim in the crystal clear water to your heart’s content. A day spent in Tayrona National park is truly the most relaxing and beautiful way to spend a day!
Santa Marta is a classic Colombian coastal city. Built as a trade city, Santa Marta was the first Spanish settled city in Colombia and is the second oldest in South America. These days the city is mainly visited for access to Tayrona National Park, however, one of the unique Colombian Highlights to the city is the La Quinta de San Pedro.
The La Quinta de San Pedro is a historical building famous for being the death place of Simon Bolivar. Simon Bolivar, for those who don’t know, was the man who overthrew the Spanish helping achieve independence for Colombia, Venezuela, Panama, Peru, Bolivia, and Ecuador.
He is considered one of the most important people in South American history. And is a national icon in modern Colombia and South America. His story is truly fascinating, making a visit to Santa Marta a must!
Cartagena is another port city, filled with cultural diversity unlike anywhere else in Colombia. As the city was one of the most important trade points during Spanish rule, its food and culture are truly unique.
Another point of interest in Cartagena is the Old City, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The city is entirely surrounded by huge fort walls used as protection from one of the many attacks in the city’s history. The cobblestone streets within the Old City are filled with stunning Spanish architecture that is just waiting to be explored.
Colombia is a country that offers so much to its visitors. If you want to visit Colombia for yourself, check out our 7-day Glimpse of Colombia trip, or longer 13-day Culture and Nature of Colombia tour. Both these tours visit some or all of the places mentioned above to give you the best Colombian Highlights!