Maybe you’re wondering if Colombia is good for tourism. Yes! Colombia is one of the most thrilling and welcoming destinations to explore in South America. If you’re planning on traveling through Colombia for your next vacation, let us help you!
Rebecca Adventure Travel has a wide offer of multiple-day tours in amazing Colombia. All are shared group tours. This means you’ll have a different guide every day. Also, you’ll enjoy a mix of group day tours and private day tours. As a result, you’ll meet new people every day! Learn more about Colombia and get inspired to start planning your next vacation.
Why visit Colombia?
Colombia is a magical country. It’s one of the most biodiverse countries in the world. It features two oceans (Pacific and Caribbean), a wide range of climates, energetic cities, impressive wildlife, and multiple adventurous activities.
The country is almost twice the size of France or Texas. It has Andean summits, the Caribbean and Pacific Coast, and the enigmatic Amazon jungle. Travelers can find pre-Columbian architecture and multicultural communities.
Colombians are well known for their joyful Latin spirit. They are described as positive people who enjoy life. Generally speaking, they are charismatic and cheerful. They like to celebrate at every opportunity, recognizing their rumbero spirit (or party spirit) wherever they are.
Colombia was colonized by the Spanish Crown in the 16th century. Same as in Ecuador and Peru, the Spaniards had a deep impact on the development of architecture such as Haciendas (that still remain today), the religious landscape, culture, traditions, and ethnic evolution. Would you like to learn more about the history of Spanish colonization and how Colombia became independent? Watch the Netflix series about Simon Bolivar.
Traditions in Colombia
Thanks to its unique traditions, Colombia is a great tourist destination. Colombians have learned to blend the traditions of their European, African, and indigenous roots. At the same time, they have created new customs, making it a fascinating country.
Did you know that Colombia has 18 long weekends every year? The many holidays, parties, and celebrations make Colombia a tourist-friendly destination. For instance, you can enjoy music festivals, city fairs, carnivals, literary festivals, and more. In the Colombian party culture, there is always something to celebrate.
Have you ever danced to a vallenato? Vallenato is a popular folk music genre from Colombia, traditionally from the Caribbean region. The word means “born in the valley” because it has influences from the northeastern part of the country. Moreover, vallenato music is an Intangible Cultural Heritage in Need of Urgent Safeguarding, according to UNESCO.
Even so, Colombians are famous for their amazing way of expressing emotions through music and dance. There’s a rhythm for every occasion. Moreover, Colombians enjoy different traditional genres and styles such as:
The Population of Colombia
More than 50 million people live in Colombia, as of October 2022, according to United Nations data. It’s equivalent to 0.65% of the world’s total population. Even so, 84% of the population lives in the urban region, and the median age is 31.3 years.
Moreover, the majority of Colombians are defined as mestizos or a mixture of European and Latin American cultures. Around 10% of the population recognized themselves as Afro-Colombian, and 3.4% as indigenous.
How is the Weather in Colombia?
If you’re planning a tour of Colombia, you should check the weather. The country has five natural regions: the Andes, the Pacific, the Caribbean, Amazon, and the Llanos (plains). Therefore, the climate varies depending on its geography.
Officially, Colombia has two seasons: dry (December to February, and July to August) and rainy (April, May, and September through November). However, the climate varies according to the altitude: warm, temperate, cold, and snow.
In general, Colombia is a warm country, with almost 80% of its territory below 1,000 m above sea level. The sultry climate can be found in the Colombian Caribbean, Pacific, and some Andean cities.
The Pacific region has the highest humidity (around 90%), as well as the Amazon, and the Llanos (plains).
The ‘Eternal Spring’ in the coffee region
The coffee region of Colombia has dry winters and wet summers, making it an optimal growing condition for coffee bean production. This region has temperatures that vary throughout the year.
In Colombia, cold climates can be found between 2,000 and 3,000 meters (6,562 and 9,843 ft) above sea level. For instance, Bogota, Colombia’s capital city, has an average temperature of 14°C (57,2 °F), with cool days and brisk nights. Also, the paramos (moorlands) of the Andes mountains are snow-covered areas.
Colombia Travel Tips
When you visit Colombia, you should consider that even though it’s a beautiful country with mind-blowing landscapes and very friendly people, it did have a troubling history.
1. Is Colombia safe to visit?
In contrast to popular belief, Colombia is so much more than drug trafficking, violence, and corruption. Cities such as Medellin and Bogota have cosmopolitan, sophisticated cultural sceneries like any other city in the world.
Over the last few years, the government has developed multiple strategies to boost tourism. Therefore, is it dangerous to travel to Colombia? No, not at all! Tourists just need to follow 5 basic safety rules, just like in any other Latin American country:
- Choose a tour company like Rebecca Adventure Travel with experience in selecting authentic and adventurous tours in Colombia.
- Don’t use unlicensed street taxis. Use an app like Uber to order taxis.
- Don’t walk around alone at night.
- Pay attention to your belongings.
- Don’t put yourself at unnecessary risk.
2. Who can travel to Colombia?
Colombia is an open-borders country. Depending on where you’re from, you should still check if you need a tourist visa to enter Colombia. For instance, if you have a passport from the United States, European Union, or Canada, you don’t require a visa to enter.
Also, holders of United States visas or Schengen visas from China, India, Thailand, and Vietnam have visa-free access. For more information, you can check the Colombia Migration Department’s official webpage.
3. What are Colombia’s travel requirements?
Colombia allows visitors to stay within a 90-day period. Therefore, all tourists are required to show an onward or return ticket valid within that time. Also, the Colombian Migration Department requests travelers to fill out the ‘Check-Mig’ form between 24 hours and 1 hour before departure.
For more information, make sure to check the Ministry of Health recommendations for travelers.
Health and Vaccines
Nowadays, no vaccines are required to enter Colombia. However, if you want to visit the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta National Park, the Tayrona National Park, or other Amazon reserves, Colombian authorities require the yellow fever vaccination. You should be administered the vaccine at least 10 days prior to your travel.
The government also recommends you get vaccinated against Hepatitis A and Typhoid fever. Moreover, it’s advised to have Malaria pills if you’re visiting the rainforest region.
Medication and Healthcare
In Colombia, you need a prescription in order to buy medication at a pharmacy or drugstore. Also, it’s recommended to have international medical insurance before traveling.
The country has intense sun, so you should use sunscreen and stay hydrated at all times. Finally, it’s advised to drink from bottled water and ask about the ingredients used in the meals you order.
Where should you go in Colombia?
Colombia is one of the most biodiverse nations in the world. It has a rich Amazon jungle, coral-white beaches, and coffee plantations, among others. Moreover, it hosts close to 10% of the planet’s biodiversity. Also, it ranks first in the amount of bird and orchid species, as well as second in plants, butterflies, fishes, and amphibians.
Colombia is a Biodiverse Country!
Even so, the country has vast biodiversity in the Andean ecosystems, with a variety of endemic species in the Amazon rainforest and the Choco area. Moreover, the Choco Andean Corridor is a biodiversity hotspot that starts in Colombia, goes through Ecuador, and runs into Peru. It’s a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve.
Same as in Ecuador, it’s between the mountains and the sea. In both countries, the Choco is most famous for bird-watching. There are more than 400 species of wild birds in the wet cloud forest and humid lowland forest.
Colombian orchids are known all over the world
Did you know that Colombia has more than 4,000 species of orchids? Actually, the country is one of the largest flower producers in the world. As a matter of fact, 70% of the flowers are imported to the United States. The most popular shades of orchids are purple, magenta, and pink.
Orchids thrive in Colombia thanks to their warm climate. Due to the fact that Colombia is located on the equator, the country has the largest number of orchids in the world. For instance, 1.543 are endemic species, which means they are only found on its territory.
What are Colombia’s tourist attractions?
Located on the northwest side of South America, Colombia is a great place for a family vacation. It’s considered one of the world’s 17 megadiverse countries. And, of these, the most biodiverse country per square kilometer.
Moreover, Colombia’s richest biological diversity is represented in its vast geography, which is composed of two seas, three mountain ranges, lush jungles, and beautiful rivers.
Being in the equatorial zone, coupled with the geological conditions of the country allows tourists to enjoy a variety of ecosystems and landscapes.
Colombia is the perfect destination for a family vacation
Colombia is the perfect destination for your family and friends. From the beautiful beaches of Cartagena to the city of the Eternal Spring, Medellin, there are a lot of attractions for your loved ones to explore.
Even so, Colombia is ideal for couples who want to travel to an exotic destination for a romantic getaway. Then, where should you go to Colombia?
Located in central Colombia, the Andean region is the most populated natural region of Colombia, containing many of the country’s urban centers. The Andes are divided into three mountain range branches, also known as cordilleras:
- The West Andes run adjacent to the Pacific Coast.
- The Central Andes run up the center of the country.
- The East Andes extend northeast.
The climate throughout the Andes varies according to altitude. It has been divided into 4 zones:
- Tierra caliente (hot land) with river valleys and basins below 1.000 m.
- Tierra templada (temperate land) at 1.000 m to 2.000 m.
- Tierra fría (cold land) at 2.000 to 3.200 m.
- Tierra helada (frozen land) at 4.600 m and above.
The tropical forests from the Amazon are the Earth’s lungs. The South American Amazon is the largest, most diverse tropical forest in the world. It covers more than 5 million square kilometers (2.1 million sq mi). The forest is so important because it draws carbon dioxide and breathes oxygen.
Even so, the rainforest is home to more than half of the world’s species of animals and plants. Also, the Colombian Amazon is crisscrossed by 5 rivers: Putumayo, Caqueta, Orinoco, Apaporis, and Amazon.
Indigenous communities inhabit the area. They have maintained their ancient wisdom and traditions. For instance, the Amazon region is one of the most pristine nature destinations in the country. You can choose tours that include bird-watching, waterfall hikes, rafting trips, swimming, watching inquisitive pink river dolphins, and much more.
Certainly, one of the best Colombia travel destinations is on the Caribbean Coast. This area is very diverse, with amazing beaches, stunning mountain landscapes, and a wild desert in the north. The two main Atlantic port cities of the Caribbean are Barranquilla and Cartagena.
The Caribbean is world famous for its beaches, but also for the local music like cumbia, vallenato, salsa, reggaeton, and other Afro-Caribbean rhythms. The area also has a rich tradition of myths and legends, as well as artistic traditions.
Cartagena is one of the most popular cities in Colombia. Is a sultry, magical city with cobblestone streets. It has a Caribbean-unique energy thanks to its location by the Caribbean Sea, in the northwestern part of South America.
The colonial architecture of Cartagena de Indias is one of its most known attractions. Tourists love to indulge in a rooftop terrace and be seduced by the nightlife of the Caribbean. Also, you can visit the walled city and its balconies.
Other Colombia Tour Highlights
Colombia is a major tourist destination thanks to its amazing landscapes. Also, you can find multiple ecosystems not far from each other. The country is so megadiverse that tourists can even find two desert areas, two coastlines (one in the Caribbean and the other in the Pacific), the rainforest, and much more.
Apart from the scenic natural habitats, Colombia has stunning metropolitan cities that have made the country a very touristic destination.
Bogota is a business hub in Latin America. The capital of Colombia is a mixture of people from around the world and a very traditional city. Bogotanos (people from Bogota) have had the impressive ability to recreate a city that merges the past with the present.
Medellin is a reborn city. Once, it was the stronghold of Colombia’s famous drug lord, Pablo Escobar. However, nowadays it is a tourist-friendly city with a spring-like climate of around 24°C, perfect for Colombia tourism. If you visit Medellin, you’ll be wrapped up in the music, the delicious food, and its colorful neighborhoods.
Moreover, Medellin is the gateway to the Colombian coffee region (also known as Zona Cafetera). Also, it is a vibrant city for art lovers, foodies, and sustainable tourism initiatives.
Even so, in 2013, it was named the most innovative city in the world by the Wall Street Journal’s City of the Year Contest. According to the judges, Medellin is a transformed city that promotes social equity and environmental sustainability.
Coffee tours should be on your Colombia bucket list
Colombia has the best coffee tours in South America. The country is one of the major coffee producers in the world. After Brazil and Vietnam, Colombia comes 3rd place in production. The industry has been developing since the 1700s.
Coffee is so unique in Colombia because the country is mountainous. Mountains create an ideal environment for Arabica coffee. It’s a simple equation: mountains + latitude = great coffee.
The country is a great exporter, having over 50.000 coffee bean farms and plantations. The coffee is so delicious that for the past years the coffee tourism industry has grown making coffee tours a must.
Build your own tour
Rebecca Adventure Travel offers multiple-day tours from 3 to 21 days around Colombia, so you can discover the beauty of the country! You can also contact us to create your own customized trip. If you have any special requests, like a private tour, a honeymoon, a family trip, or a very short tour, our destination experts will be happy to help you!