Experience Colombia (Explorations)
10 days with Collette Vacations Rating:
Day 1 Bogotá, Colombia - Tour Begins
The allure of a red-hot culture steeped in history, art, and tradition sweeps across stunning Caribbean landscapes drawing you to Colombia – South America’s Andean oasis. In the cradle of the Andean peaks, discover a Technicolor amalgam of culture, history, and romance in Bogotá – Colombia’s elevated capital city.
Day 2 Bogotá
Colombia’s heart beats in Bogotá. Discover why on a walking tour along the calles, the plazas, past painted brick and around emerald parks. Get lost in a mélange of color and spice with a visit to Paloquemao Market. In here it’s a sensory feast – a happy overload of exotic fruit, vegetables, meat, fish, herbs, and flowers. Embark on a tasting journey through the market’s rainbow displays while your guide dishes out some favorite samples. All that glitters is indeed gold at the Museo del Oro, where 55,000 pieces of gold from pre-Hispanic cultures are exhibited across the rooms. Tonight, Colombian fare and friendship are on the menu for a welcome dinner at one of Bogotá’s local restaurants. (B,D)
Day 3 Bogotá - Coffee Region
Fly over mystical valleys and rolling jade hills, over terracotta-roofed farm houses, spindly wax palm trees and verdant coffee plantations. In this section of Colombia’s coffee zone, learn about the coffee-making process and sample the perks of the region, bean to cup. Retreat tonight to your lodge overlooking the incredible countryside, an oasis in and of itself. (B,D)
Day 4 Coffee Region - Cocora Valley
At the foot of the Andes, under clouds that swim between vivid green mountains and towering wax palms, experience the majesty of the Cocora Valley aboard equipped 4x4 jeeps known as “Willys.” Then, it’s your choice! Set out to hike the valley and look up at the slender poles of wax palms -OR- travel on horseback* to see the valley through the eyes of a Colombian farmer. In the magical surround of the Andes, enjoy a locally-sourced picnic** lunch before hitting the road to colorful Salento. In this small town, along quaint streets and paisa architecture, encounter local artisans and their unique crafts as you explore independently. (B,L)
Day 5 Coffee Region - Medellín
Marvel at the natural wonders of the vast Aburra Valley on a scenic drive to Medellín, the “City of Eternal Spring.” Dine with the locals and indulge in a specially cultivated tasting menu that highlights traditional ingredients with modern flare. (B,D)
Day 6 Medellín
Medellín is a cosmopolitan hub deeply rooted in tradition, yet decidedly modern. In Comuna 13, a walking tour of this neighborhood that clings to the mountainside is a journey that looks into Colombia’s past with a focus on the future. Walk wide-eyed with a neighborhood resident and curiously pass the chromatic murals and stunning graffiti art. (B)
Day 7 Medellín - Cartagena
Spend this morning in the village of Santa Elena, nestled inside the Andes Mountains. The pastoral idyll of this traditional flower farm enchants upon the very moment of approach. Lush arrangements that serve as Medellín’s cultural symbol are painstakingly crafted here for the Feria de Flores, Colombia’s national flower festival. Meet with a true silletero and learn of the rich tradition and history of flower farming in Medellín as you discover firsthand what a “day in the life” of a flower farmer is like. Afterward, board a flight across a short strait to the tropical port city of Cartagena. (B)
Day 8 Cartagena
Today, see the city’s colorful streets. In Bolivar Plaza, downtown’s historic nucleus, see traditional musicians and dancers perform and women in dresses the colors of the Colombian flag selling fruit from the tops of turbaned heads. Enjoy the rest of the day on your own and dive head-first into the local culture. (B)
Day 9 Cartagena
Today, take in more of Cartagena’s special energy independently. Stroll the city, explore the iconic fortress of Castillo San Felipe de Barajas, or just have a seat at the bar, order a mojito, some ceviche, and do some serious people-watching. Perhaps you’ll choose to take a day trip to the unspoiled Rosario Islands. This evening we toast to the end of a fantastic journey in Colombia. (B,D)
Day 10 Cartagena - Tour Ends
Your Colombian experience comes to an end this morning in Cartagena. (B)
All This Included
Embark on an incredible journey through the Andean oasis of Colombia and begin a love affair with the vibrancy, spirit, and passion of this emerald of the Caribbean coast. Visit Bogotá – Colombia’s beating heart. Fly over mystic valleys and stand at the foot of the Andes in Colombia’s verdant coffee region, where wax palms tower overhead and the secrets to perfect Colombian coffee are revealed. On a journey of discovery, tour the murals of Medellín’s Comuna 13 with a neighborhood resident. Adventure to the Cocora Valley with 4x4 “Willys” to hike or explore on horseback. Line the aisles of a sensory buffet at Paloquemao market, and indulge in the romance and history of sultry Cartagena. When you experience Colombia, you discover earthly treasures swept across stunning Caribbean landscapes that enliven the spirit – and sense of adventure – around every turn.
Bogota: Movich Chico 97
Pereira: San Carlos Lodge
Medellin: Hotel Park 10
Cartagena: Hyatt Regency
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* The prices shown are U.S. dollars per person, based on double occupancy, and subject to availability. Prices quoted for land/cruise arrangements are subject to increase without notice. Once we have received your deposit, land/cruise prices are guaranteed. Air prices quoted via phone or email are subject to increase and are guaranteed only from the time that full payment is received. Also, air prices or air promotions mentioned on this site or on the phone do not include baggage fees imposed by airlines.