Popayán downtown in Colombia

Top Reasons To Visit Popayan

Lovers of history and architecture will find many top reasons to visit Popayan, capital of Cauca and a city located in southwest Colombia. These reasons range from the practical to sights you can expect from the city.

Popayán downtown in Colombia

Popayán downtown in Colombia

Reason #1: Popayan dates back to the colonial era.

The old colonial city was founded by Sebastian de Belalcazar on 1537 in behalf of Spain. As of this writing, Popayan is around 470 years old. Spanish occupation helped shape most of the city’s architecture, therefore earning its title as “the white city”. Spanish colonials are also responsible for much of Popayan’s historical attractions.

Reason #2: Ease of travel.

Buses and taxis are commonly used in Colombia, not just for traveling within a city but also between cities. This makes getting to Popayan cheap and easy. A more convenieent way of traveling would be to take a plane. Scheduled flights to the city are available from Bogota. Buses and taxis may also be used to get around Popayan but not always necessary. One of the top reasons to visit Popayan is that because of its small land, you can pretty much explore most of its attractions by foot.

Reason #3: It’s one of the most picturesque cities in South America.

As expected of any colonial era city, Popayan has a wealth of historical and architectural landmarks. They are among the top reasons to visit Popayan. These structures make it one of the most scenic cities throughout Latin America.

The most impressive sights are normally churches such as Iglesia de San Francisco and Iglesia La Ermita. Government buildings like Gobernacion follow suit as interesting attractions. The school grounds of Universidad del Cauca have colonial buildings as well. Puente del Humilladero is yet another noteworthy landmark that contributes to the city’s colonial charm. It is a Roman-style walking bridge that goes over a city river.

Last but not least is Parque de Caldas, the central square of the city. It was named after Francisco Jose de Caldas who designed Torre del Reloj, a clock tower located on one side of the square. The clock tower was constructed in Croydon, England and was shipped to Colombia as a gift.

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