Colombia is a country full of surprises. From its unique geography to its rich cultural heritage and colorful history, it’s no wonder that the country has been attracting travelers from all over the world for decades.
Colombia has a lot to offer for nature-lovers, culture-lovers, foodies, adrenaline seekers and digital nomads. It’s a country where you can find everything you need: mountains, beaches, jungles, ruins and cities.
Colombia is a large country with many natural attractions, but it is also a country with many problems. For this reason, tourism in Colombia has not yet reached its full potential and there are still many places that are not known by the general public.
This article will give you some tips on how to discover the hidden gems of Colombia and enjoy a trip where you can connect with nature while being responsible towards the environment.
The following are some of the best hidden gems in Colombia we discovered on our recent trip:
1- HIDDEN GEM IN COLOMBIA 🇨🇴 : Caño Cristales
WORLD’S MOST INTERESTING RIVER ! 😍 JOIN US ON A 3 DAYS 2 NIGHTS TRIP AT LA MANIGUA LODGE TO VISIT !
Rivers around the world aren’t just blue, clear or muddy!
Cañons Cristales in Colombia 🇨🇴 is known as the « River of 5 colors » or the « Liquid Rainbow 🌈 ». It has waters that flow with bright blue, red, black, yellow and green !
AND GUESS WHAT ? The river has little to no water creatures, which makes it safe to float or swim in the natural swimming pools and waterfalls, practically undistributed😍.
2- HIDDEN GEM IN COLOMBIA 🇨🇴 : Tayrona National Park, Palomino
WELCOME TO PARADISE, WELCOME TO COLOMBIA 🇨🇴
Tayrona National Park, located along Colombia’s north, Caribbean coast is one of the countries gems😍
It’s where pristine white sand beaches and turquoise, warm water meet lush, tropical jungle 🌿🪵🌳
It’s a playground for those who love trekking, nature and wildlife and beaches 🤩.
The Sierra Nevada mountains and Tayrona National Park are also home to a handful of indigenous tribes who still have a very traditional way of life which can be observed in some places 🙏🏻
- Due to the park being a protected area you are not allowed to fly drones in the park 🚫
- DO buy from the indigenous locals. Many rely on tourists to make a decent living 👐🏻
- It’s difficult to visit Tayrona without doing any walking so be prepared for walking, even if for the most part it’s flat 🥾
3- HIDDEN GEM IN COLOMBIA 🇨🇴 : Guatape
HAVE YOU SEEN THE BIG GUATAPE ROCK 😱 ? SWIP TO SEE ‼️
650 stairs lead you through a narrow crack on the edge of the impressive La Piedra Del Penol.
At the top of the Guatape rock, the view is quite simply breathtaking and has to be one of the most amazing lookouts in all of Colombia 🇨🇴.
At 2,135 meters above sea-level, this rock is a natural wonder and the perfect spot to enjoy panoramic views of Guatape Lake and this beautiful region 😍
Fun facts 🤩:
- According to archaeologists, it was created around 65 million years ago😮
- It is also called the airport of witches by some. There are people that say that after 9 pm witches land at the top of it to gather 🧙🏻♀️☠️
- There is also a story that an elf goes up and down the huge ladder searching for the gold that is said to be inside the rock 🤫
4- HIDDEN GEM IN COLOMBIA 🇨🇴 : San José del Guaviare
San José del Guaviare 💚
Guaviare department is basically brand new to tourism: an epicentre of the conflict and the drug trade, the jungle covered region was a no-go zone for many years.
The Guaviare is the entrance to the Amazon and is full of wild magic and mysticism. Apart from lush landscapes, jungles, colorful rivers, waterfalls, dazzling fauna and flora, it is also a cultural journey back in time.
One of the places to visit is Cerro Azul, where you can find these spectacular murals with super well preserved cave paintings, some of the best in the world.
Do you know how old they are? 😱Mmm well, neither do I. Nobody knows for sure but it is believed that between 10 thousand and 12 thousand years...how much history these rocks have seen pass by 😲😲💚
5- HIDDEN GEM IN COLOMBIA 🇨🇴 : Lost City - Sierra Nevada Jungle, Colombia
Did you know that the tourism community save the Lost City from drug traffic and wars ? 🕊️
In the 1970s, farmers began to inhabit the lower parts of the mountains, escaping other types of violence: Colombia’s civil war and gang conflicts caused by drug trafficking. ⚔️
Fortunately, nowadays residents of the region work with tourism - a profitable, safe and legal alternative to marihuana and coca production. Local farmers are heavily involved in the industry, building some of the campsites, leading travellers along the trail and using their mules to carry food for groups visiting the Lost City.
Tourism became an economic alternative for the good of everyone ! 🌎💚 What an example of sustainable development! 😍
To know, to make this trek, you must be accompanied by a local guide, if you are interested here is the program that we offer to our customers. 🙌
6- HIDDEN GEM IN COLOMBIA 🇨🇴 : Salento
A SUSTAINABLE COFFEE TOUR IN SALENTO, COLOMBIA ! 🇨🇴
Want to escape busy city life ? Salento is a small Colombian town surrounded by rolling green hills, and it’s the perfect place for it ! 🙂
While being in town, we visited a local coffee plantation because we are all huge coffee lovers, aren’t we ? 😉 but we have never witnessed the process in person so we were eager to learn more about how coffee is harvested and turned into the delicious brown liquid we drink every morning.
As soon as we arrived at the coffee plantation, our guide took us around the plantation while explaining about different coffee plant origins and growing process 🌱.
We got to pick our own coffee beans to taste, grind fresh coffee beans and ended the tour with a cup of coffee taste ☕️ !
7- HIDDEN GEM IN COLOMBIA 🇨🇴 : Jericó
GOOD NEWS : There are still hidden gems in Colombia 🇨🇴👇
For such a well-placed location, Jericó remains a small city less-traveled. It is located a mere 113 km southwest of Medellin, so be sure to visit soon before everyone gets in on the secret! 🤫 Known in Colombia as the Athens of the Southwest, its colonial heritage is alive and well in the city’s architecture.
Colorful 🌈 façades line the streets at every turn, no matter whether is a shop or a private residence 😍
We recommend to brush up on basic Spanish 🇪🇸 your visit. You will have a more satisfying experience, and be able to converse a bit with the friendly locals, who are eager to tell you about their home town 🏡
8- HIDDEN GEM IN COLOMBIA 🇨🇴 : Cocora Valley
Beautiful Salento 🇨🇴, a town of many colors and stories, backed by one of the most mesmerizing landscapes we’ve ever seen: the Cocora Valley and the world’s TALLEST palm trees (60 meters high) ! 🌴
Join our local tour operator to spend a few days in Salento, soaking up the warm village culture, admiring the rainbow-colored streets 🌈, and drinking freshly brewed coffee ☕️ in a town that sits at the very heart of Colombia’s coffee region.
IT'S TIME TO DISCOVER ECOTOURISM IN COLOMBIA !
Colombia has many hidden gems that are worth exploring. These places are off the beaten track and offer a unique experience for those who want to get away from it all. They are ideal for responsible travelers who want to live authentic experiences off the beaten track.
If you travel Colombia with this mindset you will definitely discover some hidden gems that are not yet famous but deserve to be known.