Top Reasons To Visit Popayan
March 30, 2013
The top reasons to visit Popayan will surely never fail to surprise you. Popayan is situated in south-western Colombia and is the capital city of the Cauca department. The capital city is famously known as the “White City or Ciudad Blanca” due to the stunning prehistoric houses encompassing the area.
One of the highlights of the top reasons to visit Popayan is its Holy Week season or more famously known as the Semana Santa tribute. Every night until Good Friday, candles are radiantly lighted along the parades in the narrow roads followed by the kid’s procession the week after. During this time of the year, the Religious Art Museum displays the most valuable works of art of the city’s churches. Also the Universities of Popayan showcase during the commencing of October the annual Festival de Teatro, Encuentro de Cuenteros and the international conference of theater and storytelling which is also a must see. For the rest of the year, theatrical presentations and movies can be viewed at the Centro Cultural Bolivar.
Parque Natural de Purace is another inclusion in the top reasons to visit Popayan. It is best to get a professional tour guide to ensure that you get to explore the major attractions within the area such as condor watching, hot springs, waterfalls and an endless breathtaking exhibit of eye-catching vegetation and animals. Access to the park entails a drive way above the central mountain of Colombia over some craggy paths overlooking the breathtaking scenic ambience. At the top, the office of the park is situated where you can pay for your admission and take on an orchid hike or a stroll towards the hot springs. At present, the park isn’t exploited yet so it is best to take advantage of its unsullied and pristine beauty now.
Wandering through the roads of Popayan by foot is also one of the great ways to explore the area and discover some of its historical landmarks and infrastructures such as the Puente de Humilladero and Puente Chiquito prehistoric bridges which offers an enjoyable experience of the sunbeams. Drizzling afternoons can also be spent well in Ciudad Blanca’s nice anthology of museums and churches take for example Casa Negret, Museo Iberoamericano de Arte Moderno as well as Museo de Arte Religioso and Museo de Historia Natural.
Among the other top reasons to visit Popayan are its several attention-grabbing settlements like Silvia and its weekly featured local market. Along the way, a number of tour paths will let you experience visiting the municipalities through walking or horseback riding. Alongside the same route is Paletara which is famous for showcasing trout fishing tournament during October. Paragliding and kite-flying festivities in the breezy month of August are also renowned activities to look forward experiencing in Popayan every year.
Top Reasons To Visit Vaupes
March 29, 2013
And while Vaupés lies in the heart of the Amazonian jungle, there are still top reasons to visit Vaupés and have the time of your life. Located north of Guainia, Guaviare and Caqueta and east of the Brazilian border, this jewel in the center of the jungle offers a breath-taking view of lush greenery, marvelous landscapes, rivers and a wide variety of aquatic Amazonian fauna.
This place offers enough adventure for the thrill-seeker and nature lover in you.
The list of the top reasons to visit Vaupés starts off with the Yurupari rapids. The Yurupari rapids is a 7 hour boat ride away from Vaupés’ capital, Mitu. This six meter stretch of cascades is a perfect venue to enjoy the warm waters during the day. The rapids are also very rich in local aquatic fauna such as sardines subienda, catfish, cuyucuyu and pacu.
Legend has it that the Yurupari rapids is home to an underground maze which leads to a hidden treasure of gold and diamonds. However, according to local beliefs, the treasures must never, at all times, be taken away from the maze. But some foreigners have taken advantage of the native’s gullibility and have brought some of the treasures home themselves.
Whether there’s a kernel of truth to the myth or not, the Yurupari rapids in itself is a site to behold, making the long trip worthwhile.
If B-Movies like Anaconda has piqued your curiosity over these gigantic snakes, then a visit to the Raudal de Jirijirimo should be part of your list of top reasons to visit Vaupés. Also called “La Cama de la Anaconda” (The Bed of the Anacondas), the Jirijirimo rapids is home to one of the largest snakes in the world, the anaconda. In addition to these giant snakes, the rapids are also home to other exotic fauna such as tapirs and macaws.
Other highlights in Vaupés include a ride through the Tunel de Apaporis along the Apaporis river, and a getting a stunning, panoramic view of the Amazonian jungle from the peak of Serrania Morroco.
Top Reasons To Visit Saint Elena
March 27, 2013
If you want to escape the busy streets of Medellín then the top reasons to visit Saint Elena are worth a look. It’s one of the five rural districts in Medellín, Colombia located 10 miles from the city center. It has a total of 17 small villages called veredas within its territory and is bordered by Bello and Copacabana on the north, Guarne and Rionegro on the east, and Envigado on the south. Saint Elena is a charming place and that’s just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to reasons for visiting it.
Reason #1: The weather
Medellín is regarded as a “City of Eternal Spring” but if you enjoy cooler weather, Saint Elena is an even better place. Since the town is located on a higher altitude than the city, it enjoys lower temperatures.
Reason #2: Siletta Culture
One of the top reasons to visit Saint Elena is the Siletta culture. The combination of pleasant weather and rich soil enabled local farmers to cultivate the land and grow an array of tropical flowers including local varieties. The flower growing industry in Saint Elena eventually gave birth to the practice of flower arrangement called siletta. And the siletta is the heart of the most celebrated festival in Medellin called Feria de Las Flores.
During the Festival of Flowers, the villages of Saint Elena compete against each other with their flower arrangements. Silitteros or flower-growers march downhill from the town with the silettas strapped on their backs. The main event, however, is the parade that takes place in Medellín. You can watch the silettas being made at Saint Elena the night before the parade.
Reason #3: Year-round attractions
Also among the top reasons to visit Saint Elena are the availability of year-round attractions. One of which is the Avri Regional Park. The national park spans for 28,000 acres and extends to Bello, Copacabana, and Envigado; all municipalities of Medellín. The eco park, besides its greenery, is best known for its numerous viewpoints where you can watch the sunset. Birds also thrive within Parque Avri. You can also enjoy different activities in the area including biking, fishing, kayaking, hiking, and camping. Marked trails meander through the park and will take you through lakes, the forest, and spectacular scenic views.
Top Tourist Attractions In Tunja
March 26, 2013
Fundamentally, Columbia is known for its other cities such as Bogota and Cartagena but the top tourist attractions in Tunja will also never let down your expectations. It is not the first choice in anyone’s itinerary but once you get there that’s the time that you can truly cherish the great destinations it can offer you. Located in the Altiplano Cundiboyacense, Tunja is a place that is very much away from the city’s busy life.
One of the destinations that you should visit is the famous colonial mansion called Casa Del Fundador Suarez Rendon. It is one massive colonial mansion as old as the 16th century and definitely a beauty at its best. You might be fooled with its exterior but don’t lose your interest because you will find what you’re looking for inside the mansion with its magnificent interior. It’s definitely a prized place and absolutely one of the top tourist attractions in Tunja.
Aside from the tourist spots in Tunja, the city is also well-known for its festivals. One of those is the International festival of culture. Its origin is dated back in 1973 which showcases theater, film, diverse art exhibitions, tango and a lot more. Another one is the famous Aguinaldo Boyacense which is a festival celebrated annually on the month of December. It lasts a week with parades of floats, music, cultural events, arts, sports, children’s competitions and other more. The most anticipated event in the festival is the amazing fireworks display at night which is very beautiful.
Last but not the least, is the Sierra Nevada del Cocuy. Its white peaks are quite a sight to see and travelers will surely love the beautiful scenery. Spice up your vacation by hiking but do take note that climbing the top, though very tempting, should be for professionals only. Most likely tourists can go around the area and visit lakes, waterfalls and other spectacular places with the aid of a tourist guide. Although it is recommended that for you to truly appreciate the beauty of Sierra Nevada del Cocoy is for you to spend at least a week to cherish a moment of tranquility and peace, away from the busy city.
If you have set your mind to visit Columbia and tour around the country then don’t forget to visit the top tourist attractions in Tunja. Do consider it on top of your list because the place is home to a lot of vacation getaways. Added to its tourism is the security of the place for it has the lowest crime rate in the country. You may think that it may not be the best place to spend your vacation but sometimes great things come in small cities and you just have to experience it yourself and hope that it might be one of your most memorable trips ever.
Top Reasons To Visit Valledupar
March 25, 2013
Despite the atrocities and tragedies this quaint Colombian city has experienced, the top reasons to visit Valledupar still have not lost its charm on tourists around the world. From a refreshing dip in its famous dips and watering holes to an interesting indigenous history, arts and culture, every corner holds a surprise that will continue to fascinate every traveller with the hopes of finding something different.
So what does Valledupar offer that some equally charming and picturesque neighbouring Colombian cities such as Bogota do not? Here are some of the top reasons to visit Valledupar:
Reason # 1: Feel alive with the sound of Vallenato music. The alluring sound of the accordion fills every corner of the city. And it gets even better come April during the Vallenato Legend festival. The week-long festival features Vallenato music contests such as the piquera or the battle of lyrics. It is certainly a treat to world music lovers all over the world, which makes it one of the top reasons to visit Valledupar.
Reason # 2: Take a nature trip to its ecoparks. Valledupar is also known as the greenest city in Colombia. No wonder it is called the “forest city”. La Besotes Ecopark, one of the famous ecoparks in the city can treat you to a 14 km nature hike, about 250 species of birds and other local flora and fauna.
Reason #3: Take a refreshing dip on some of their famous watering holes. Aside from the breath-taking ecoparks, Valledupar is also home to some of the famous watering holes in Colombia, a refreshing alternative to the usual white sand beaches. The Guatapuri river is frequented by tourists and locals alike. But be warned, it could get more crowded during the weekends. But don’t worry, as Valledupar has a lot of watering holes to whet your whistle, such as the Badillo river and the La Mina natural watering facilities. La Mina is also a sight to behold with its ivory white boulders and crystal clear waters.
Reason #4: Immerse in their indigenous history. Aside from a breathtaking view of their famous natural watering facilities, La Mina is also home to a historic village, where you can get your fill on indigenous crafts. Off the border of Valledupar on the way to Santa Marta, pass by Pueblo Bello for a spiritual experience with the Arhuaco people in Nabusimake. However, as the Arhuaco people are not particularly fond of tourists and being photographed, being trigger-happy with your camera is pretty much discouraged.
Top Reasons To Visit Ipiales
March 24, 2013
Most tourists shrug at the thought that there are top reasons to visit Ipiales. For them, the Colombian city is nothing more than a gateway to Ecuador so they do just that. They pass the city like a bridge that will get them somewhere else but don’t treat it as the destination itself. Well it certainly deserves more credit than what it gets.
Ipiales belongs to the Nariño Department of Colombia, southwest of the country. It lies 3 km from the Colombia-Ecuador border so it’s understandable why tourists only use it to reach Ecuador. But there are other reasons why you, as a traveler, should come to Ipiales.
Reason #1: See green clouds
Ipiales is referred to by locals as “The City of Green Clouds” or in their language, “la ciudad de las nubes verdes“. Sometimes in the afternoon, green clouds may be spotted hovering over the city.
Reason #2: Exotic food
Locals are known for their odd taste for food. For instance, they eat guinea pigs when they are treated as pets in many countries. Cavy or cuy as most locals call it is also served in many restaurants throughout Ipiales. The cuy is often likened to a mouse in terms of appearance but is said to taste like rabbit. If you’re into exotic food, this should be included in the top reasons to visit Ipiales.
Reason #3: Black and White Carnival
The grand festival is a celebration of the city’s racial diversity. During this annual event, participants paint each other with make-up and careoca which is basically white soap. People from all over Colombia visit Ipiales for the Black and White Carnival.
Reason #4: Las Lajas Cathedral
The epitome of your trip to Ipiales should be the Las Lajas Cathedral. It is an impressive work of architecture and perhaps the best throughout the city. Also known as the Las Lajas Sanctuary, Santuario de Las Lajas, or Sanctuary of Our Lady of Las Lajas, it is a basilica built within a canyon of the Guáitara River. The current structure dates from 1949 and features Gothic Revival architecture.
The cathedral was built to commemorate a miracle that took place in the area, when an apparition of the Virgin Mary appeared before a deaf and mute girl while seeking refuge in the canyon with her mother from a storm. Since then, miraculous healings have been associated with the area and has become a famous pilgrimage site for devotees of the Virgin Mary.
Reason #5: Gateway to Ecuador
Let’s face it. Its status as a gateway to Ecuador will always be part of the top reasons to visit Ipiales. To reach the border you can take a bus from the terminal in Ipiales. The bus station is a little outside of the city and you would have to get there by taking a collectivo from the city center. Bus rides from the terminal to the border costs 1,500 pesos. The trip ends at the Colombian immigration control which will help you get to Ecuador.
Top Tourist Attractions In Chia
March 23, 2013
The top tourist attractions in Chía are well worth a visit if you’re staying in Bogotá. Chía is a town located right outside the Colombian capital, in the Department of Cundinamarca. Chía is just 2.7 km from Bogotá and a short daytrip away. It is often regarded as a suburb of the capital due to its location but it’s an entirely different place that has its own tourist spots.
Universidad de La Sabana
The university is one of the most prestigious schools throughout Colombia and it is tucked in Chía, approximately 7 km away from Bogotá. Founded in 1979 it doubles as a historic attraction.
Andres Carne de Res
The bar, grill, and restaurant has a lively atmosphere that will get you moving and shaking. It is an exceptional place to spend and enjoy the night in Chía. It is adorned by unique decors and the vibe is truly amazing. You can start your night at Andres Carne de Res with dinner and party until the wee hours of the morning. Make sure that you grab refreshments while you party, especially local drinks.
Families that have kids with them can visit Panama Farm, one of the top tourist attractions in Chía. Animals endemic to Colombia are cared for in the farm.
Centro Comercial Chía
The Chía Commercial Center is a shopping mall. It may not be a good place to see and experience town’s culture and history but you get to enjoy modern comforts like shopping or dining here.
Puente del Comun
This is perhaps the best among the top tourist attractions in Chía. It is a historical landmark that town tourists cannot afford to miss. It originates from the late 18th century and was the work of Viceroy José de Ezpeleta. Puente del Comun translates to “common bridge” in English but it isn’t ordinary by any means.
The bridge is 30 km from Bogotá and spans for 32 meters. Its vaults are 6 meters thick and it has a height of about 7 feet. It is notable for its five arches, each 6 feet away. Puente del Comun is built out of brick and stone and cost Colombia $100,000 to build.
Top Tourist Attractions In Santa Cruz De Mompox
March 22, 2013
Near the prominent city of Cartagena, within the Bolivar department, lie the top tourist attractions in Santa Cruz de Mompox. Santa Cruz de Mompox is believed to be an enchanting town situated on an island amidst the Magdalena River emanating with rich cultural and architectural heritage.
Among the several ancient churches nestled in the region, Iglesia de Santa Barbara is perhaps one of the top tourist attractions in Santa Cruz de Mompox since more often than not the structure is featured in majority of its postcards and photographs owing to its remarkable structure. What’s more eye-catching about the renowned church is its uniquely-styled tower with a veranda which is ideal for picture-taking. Be sure though to pay a visit in the morning to guarantee that you get a more vivid capture of the place.
If you have the fad for shopping gold jewelleries then Mompox is just the perfect place to be. Being famed for its precious offerings of gold gems, you’ll surely fall in love with its wide array of jewelleries that you’ll find here. Moreover, among the top tourist attractions in Santa Cruz de Mompox are its great showcase of furnishings like that of the conventional sets of chairs and tables as well as its luscious delicacies such as Doña Ada’s lemon sweets and capa cheese which are perfect combinations along with your tours.
Bioma Boutique Hotel situated at Calle Real del Medio is also one of the top tourist attractions in Santa Cruz de Mompox due to its conventional accommodations and facilities that have caught the eye of picky travelers. After the completion of the hotel’s refurbishment and development in 2011 and being in a strategic position in the core of the town, Bioma Boutique Hotel has gained the fame of offering an inimitable and an unforgettable getaway and experience to its guests. Among the renowned facilities that tourists can enjoy include captivating gardens, a restaurant, swimming pool and a Jacuzzi.
Top Tourist Attractions In Caqueta
March 21, 2013
Highlighted for its strategic position in the southern central portion of Colombia, the top tourist attractions in Caqueta is indeed a noteworthy vacation spot for many travelers. Caqueta department boasts for its vast area extending from the pedestal of the Andes Mountains towards the core of the Amazon forest featuring captivating views of mountain ranges and an oasis to diverse species of wildlife making it a favorable target spot for ecotourism in Colombia. Be sure though that certain precautionary measures should be taken upon traveling since some of the areas have travel safety problems.
One of the must visit top tourist attractions in Caqueta is the Picachos National Park. The park hosts and safeguards a wide array of fauna and extraordinary flora and trees and is deemed to be the perfect place to explore and experience its rich rainforests and highlands.
Another park to explore in Caqueta is Parque Nacional Serrania de Chiribiquete which is nestled in the core of the Colombian Amazon. The national park encompasses both the cities of Guaviare and Caqueta. Its striking panoramic sceneries also display valleys, enormous rocks and diverse species of wildlife.
Florencia which is the capital city of the Department of Caqueta is also one of the top tourist attractions in Caqueta. Florencia is deemed to be the most influential metropolis in the southeast region of Colombia because of its big population and abundant heritage. The capital city is positioned in close proximity with Hacha River and is primarily the heart of the Colombia’s Amazon due to its rich fauna and vegetation.
To be immersed more with the top tourist attractions in Caqueta, the Jungle Florence is a commendable place to experience the area. The park is among Colombia’s most recent park sanctuaries nestling in the core of the mountain scopes of the Andean Mountains also covering the Caldas Department. Currently, it is considered as one of the parks which became an instrument in the continued growth and improvement of the Caqueta Department.
The Cathedral of Our Lady of Lourdes is one of the most sought after cathedrals in Colombia belonging to the top tourist attractions in Caqueta. The church is a Roman Catholic adoration sector blessed for Virgin Mary in the title of Our Lady of Lourdes. It is positioned on the western area of Plaza San Francisco de Asis and is considered as the premier church in Florencia due to its Gothic-patterned Republican style which is truly awe-inspiring and eye catching to many tourists.
Top Tourist Attractions In Huila
March 20, 2013
If you haven’t fully explored Colombia yet, the top tourist attractions in Huila might actually delight you more than you expect it. Huila is positioned on the south-west portion of Colombia’s centre regarded as the department with diverse farming contribution and marvellous scenic landscapes that captivate the imagination of many tourists. Huila Department is bordered by Meta in the east, Cauca in the west, Caqueta in the southeast portion and Tolima in the north.
Travelling 38 kilometres from Neiva city which is the capital of Huila Department, the view of Tatacoa Desert will astonish you along the way. Being the second biggest desert regions in Colombia and upholding one of the most breathtaking landscapes, Tatacoa Desert merited tobe included among the top tourist attractions in Huila. Because the desert lies close to the rivers Cabrera and Magdalena, its corrosion for more than a century now has led to the natural creation of a yellow-brownish grounds in Cuzco regions and the cinder-like hues of the Los Hoyos area. Furthermore, the desert was also known as the Valley of Sadness due to the huge trails of erosion noted which led to the great loss of thousands of flora, fauna and trees that the tropical forest used to have, transforming it into a semi-parched land generating land formations resembling that of a channel of mazes which have caught the attention of tourists all through the years.
The Bambuco Festival in Neiva is among the most sought after events in Huila. Primarily, Bambuco Festival was a celebration to pay tribute to St. John the Baptist. Around the 18th century, the Bambuco festivities were officially created to give praise to the King of Spain. Way back then, the merry-making lasts for 10 days in the urban areas and one of the highlighted activities include the bullfights, the pageants, fireworks displays and horseback rides. Not to mention the vibrant genres of music played which adds more life to the already dynamic crowd. In the rural areas though, the festivities are only usually celebrated at the riverbanks with simple merry-making and the traditional food preparation of huilense roast which is a famous local cuisine in Huila.
San Agustin Archaeological Park is definitely a must see gem of the department belonging to the top tourist attractions in Huila. This park was acknowledged as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1995 and is considered to be among the most significant historical landmarks in Huila owing to the stunning contribution of its settlers a thousand years back and the highly developed customs that run the region way before Christ’s epoch. The park’s remarkable heritage is signified by an anthology of monoliths, paved avenues, fortresses and patios that are very much eye-catching.