Real Colombia

Colombia
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There’s no doubt about it – Colombia is one of the world’s friendliest countries in South America. Mix the smiling locals with gorgeous beaches, mountains, coffee plantations, grand Spanish buildings, salsa clubs, exotic fruits, flower bouquets, hummingbirds and jungle treks and you’ve got a pretty cool adventure. On this 12-day journey through real Columbia, you’ll start in Bogota, explore Salento’s market, and stay on a coffee estancia to learn why this is one of the best places in the world for the mighty coffee bean. Discover the transformation of Medellin and soak up loads of free time in Palomino and Cartagena with heaps of opportunities for active hikes, beach days lazing in the sun and all the fresh seafood you could eat!

Availability

From 04/04/2024 to 05/01/2026

Departure dates & prices

Dates Availability Price
  • Apr Thu 04 2024 to Apr Mon 15 2024
    Available
    From
    $1,848*
  • Jul Thu 18 2024 to Jul Mon 29 2024
    Available
    From
    $2,109*
  • Aug Thu 15 2024 to Aug Mon 26 2024
    Available
    From
    $2,310*
  • Nov Thu 21 2024 to Dec Mon 02 2024
    Available
    From
    $2,395*
  • Dec Thu 26 2024 to Jan Mon 06 2025
    Available
    From
    $2,395*
  • Feb Thu 20 2025 to Mar Mon 03 2025
    Available
    From
    $2,330*

What's included

Go behind the scenes of the beans during a unique stay on a traditional coffee estancia located deep in Colombia's coffee country – caffeine addicts rejoice!.
Take part in a game of Tejo – Colombia's national sport and a popular pastime in Salento (think bocce with gunpowder) – with the locals in the Tejo hall.
Hike through the lush Cocora Valley – home to cute little hummingbirds and the world's tallest palm trees!.
Explore Colombia’s Caribbean coast with two free days in Palomino.
Chill out on the beach, hike through the jungle in nearby Tayrona National Natural Park or dine on delicious seafood – the choice is yours!.
Lose yourself in the colours of Cartagena as you wander through the cobbled streets packed with beautiful churches, monasteries, and mansions.
Then, enjoy two full days of free time to choose your own adventure.
By travelling on this trip, you’ll directly support our Intrepid Foundation partner, PAC.
Donations help them bring life-changing healthcare to rural communities in Colombia.
Breakfasts Included: 11.
Lunches Included: 1.
Dinners Included: 2.
Hotel (7 nights),Hostel (2 nights),Coffee Estancia (2 nights).
Plane,Local bus,Private vehicle,MetroCable Acevedo.
Age: min 18, max 29.
Group Size: 1 - 16.
Bogota - La Candelaria Walking Tour.
Salento - Traditional Tejo Game.
Bogota - Visit to Paloquemao market.
Coffee Region - Cocora Valley visit & Hike.
Leader-led Informal Spanish Lesson.
Manizales - Coffee plantation tour, coffee tasting and coffee making.
Medellin - Barrio Transformation Tour.
.

Itinerary

  • 1 - Bogota Bienvenidos! Welcome to Colombia. Your adventure begins in the capital city Bogota with a welcome meeting at 6 pm. If you arrive early, you can join your leader and fellow travellers early for an orientation walk around this gorgeous town at 1 pm this afternoon. Check out the colonial-era buildings framed by mountains and the cobblestoned centre of La Candelaria. Later, why not head out for dinner with the group at one of the local restaurants? Your leader will have all the best recommendations!
  • 2 - Salento Today, arise nice and early and explore the colourful Paloquemao Market with your trip leader. Get to know the locals and try new flavours at this bustling whirlwind of colours and scents. From the market, hop on a short flight to Colombia's famous coffee region and then transfer to the beautiful village of Salento. When you arrive, take your time strolling through the quaint streets and admiring the paisa architecture. For dinner tonight, maybe tuck into the local favourite of trout - there are many different ways to enjoy it here, but mostly, it's served with a rich, garlicky cheese sauce. Colombia's national sport, Tejo, is a popular pastime in Salento - think bocce with gunpowder! If you're game, visit the local tejo hall and give it a go.
  • 3 - Cocora Valley Today, hop in a jeep and head out to the Cocora Valley - home of the tall wax palm (Colombia's national tree). You could spend the morning checking out the region's awesome scenery on foot with a hike to Finca la Montana. At 2860 m, there are some pretty incredible views of Morrogacho Mountain (if cloud and fog permit) and the valley below during the hike to the top. If you'd rather take it easy, you can explore the valley on your own and then cruise back to town in a jeep. Later, travel deep into Colombia's coffee region for a two-night stay at Guayabal - an old-school coffee estancia, owned and run by a local family in Chinchina. Guayabal has been in the family since 1950, survived an earthquake in 1979 and with lots of dedication and hard work, became the humble estancia it is today, surrounded by lush greenery and mountain peaks.
  • 4 - Coffee Estancia Thanks to the tropical altitude and fertile volcanic soil, Colombia is one of the world's biggest coffee producers. You'll get to know this addictive little bean much better on a guided tour of the coffee plantation and processing centre today. Dig into the history of the plant, learning the inside story of the industry that's long buoyed the country's economy. See how the beans are grown and harvested, processed, dried, roasted and ground, and then sample first-hand what all the fuss is about. You'll try different types of coffee grains and get a lesson on preparing them, finishing it all off with a steaming cup of freshly brewed joe. Later, relax amid the estancia's beautiful surroundings of sloping green hills and valleys.
  • 5 - Medellin Jump aboard a comfortable public bus this morning and head to Medellin. This is a bit of a long drive, so grab a good book or your favourite playlist or play some road trip games and get to know your group a little better. When you arrive, your leader will take you on an orientation walk so you can get your bearings. Learn about how Medellin spent the 1980s and 90s with an international reputation as one of the world's most dangerous cities (no thanks to Pablo Escobar's notorious drug cartel). Medellin has now turned itself around to become one of the most exciting cities in South America. With some of the country's finest museums, parks and architecture (and a much safer and more comfortable atmosphere), it's easy to see why it's getting more popular. Tonight, you're free to relax or ask your leader for the best local hang outs where you can try some arepas (crispy white corn cakes usually stuffed with meat and vegetables.
  • 6 - Medellin Today, you'll take part in a Barrio transformation tour. Take a metro cable Acevedo to meet your local guide and discover more about how Medellin has transformed its most populated neighbourhoods. You'll explore its history, the struggle of its people, the outstanding achievements and the different faces of the city's recent transformation. Later, return to Medellin, where you'll have free time to search out one of the city's pumping salsa bars (Medellin's nightlife may well be the best in Colombia!).
  • 7 - Medellin Get out and about in Medellin with a free day today. You might want to visit the Museo de Antioquia to see some of Botero's famous works or get more modern at the beautiful Museo de Arte Moderno. Or you can go further afield on an optional day trip to Santa Fe de Antioquia. This 16th-century township has kept a lot of its colonial-era pizazz. The Bridge of the West, Metropolitan Cathedral and House of Two Palms are pretty great photo ops, and the plaza is also home to a daily market where vendors sell varieties of locally grown Tamarind (you can try a few samples). One of the best things to do here is mosey through the cobblestone streets and take in the local scene at your own pace.
  • 8 - Palomino This morning, you'll fly to Santa Marta and then take a private transfer north to Palomino - a small town on the Caribbean coast of Colombia in the Guajira region. Watch the scenery go by and maybe get stuck into your book before arriving this afternoon. When you arrive, your leader will show you around Palomino town and if you fancy, you can pick up some empanadas for lunch. This is the perfect town for some quality beach time, so with your free afternoon, why not laze on the warm sands and enjoy the views (on a clear day) of the glacial peaks of the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta. If you're looking for something more active, visit the surrounding National Park for a hike. Tonight, take the chance to feast on some fresh seafood, like lionfish or prawns - with its Caribbean location, Palomino is naturally home to some excellent restaurants with some of the freshest and tastiest seafood in Colombia. The best of them can be found at the far end of the beach, where the river meets the sea.
  • 9 - Palomino Today is a free day in Palomino. Get active and maybe take a hike in the nearby Tayrona National Natural Park - a large, protected area of the foothills of the Siera Nevada de Santa Marta known for its palm-shaded coves, coastal lagoons and biodiverse rainforest. Here, you can soak up the stunning scenery of the Sierra Nevada ranges and the glittering Caribbean Sea. If you prefer, you can just spend some time chilling on the beach until it's time to hit the bar or find something delicious for dinner tonight.
  • 10-11 - Cartagena Travel to Cartagena this morning - a port city on the Caribbean coast known for its walled Old Town founded in the 16th century. When you arrive, your leader will take you on a short orientation walk around the hotel. Then, you'll have the chance to soak up all this city offers at your own pace, with two whole days free. The Old Town's inner walls are the main attraction - inside, it's packed with beautiful churches, monasteries and mansions. Maybe visit San Felipe de Barajas Castle or hit one of the nearby beaches. You could visit the Coral Islands or take a boat trip to the Rosario Islands for more coastal bliss. You could also take on a rum tasting (yum) or learn some new moves at a champeta dance class. If you fancy, maybe take a private sunset cruise on the water and watch the city transform as darkness falls. Your leader will be on hand to give you tips on making the best of your time.
  • 12 - Cartagena After breakfast today, it's time to say adios to your newfound friends as your adventure comes to an end in Cartagena this morning. If you'd like to extend your stay, just speak to your booking agent.
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