10 Reasons to Visit Colombia in 2021

10 Reasons to Visit Colombia in 2021 | Destinations presents Travel 2021
10 Reasons to Visit Colombia in 2021 | Destinations presents Travel 2021
Colombia is a country of contrasts, unexplored landscapes, vast biodiversity, rich cultures and ancient histories, with welcoming people full of energy and passion.
Colombia is a country of contrasts, unexplored landscapes, vast biodiversity, rich cultures and ancient histories, with welcoming people full of energy and passion. Its emergence from the travel wilderness offers lush landscapes and unique experiences to explore, making it utterly enticing for 2021 travellers.
 
1. Its abundance of wildlife
From Colombian safaris with jaguars and anacondas, sea life expeditions with humpback whales and sea turtles, to jungle treks with pink dolphins and monkeys, as well as forest reserves with sloths and toucans, Colombia offers some of the best wildlife watching in the world and this is a responsibility that it doesn’t take lightly. Colombia is one of the first countries in the world to participate in the Future of Tourism Coalition that shares a global mission to ensure a more sustainable and responsible future for travel including wildlife conservation as world tourism recovers from Covid-19.
 
2. It has one of the world’s biggest Carnivals
The Barranquilla Carnival gives Rio a run for its money with a spectacular display of Colombia’s multifarious cultures; African, Indigenous, European and Middle-Eastern. Barranquilla Carnival reflects a cultural and musical melting-pot, expect exuberant dancing, vibrant music and colourful costumes all inspired by the myriad styles and cultures of the city. The four-day celebration (which was declared a Masterpiece of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity by UNESCO) runs in early February, but the Colombians also host a pre-carnival in January.
 
3. Hotbed of Global Street Art Talent
With the 2011 legalisation of graffiti in Bogota, the Colombian capital has become a hotbed of global talent, with homegrown and world-renowned artists showcasing their art throughout the city. A shining example of the transformative power of Colombia’s street art can also be seen in Medellin – once regarded the world’s most dangerous city. Through successful community-driven, revitalisation programmes, residents now use the city walls as canvases to share stories of the city’s past and tell their personal tales. Remarkably, in the space of one generation, Medellin has been transformed into one of Colombia’s most innovative and coolest cities with a thriving art scene.
 
4. It has Caribbean Beaches… (with views of snow-capped mountains!)
There aren’t many places in the world where you can sun yourself on a Caribbean beach and see snow-capped mountains at the same time! On clear days, bathers can spot the glacial heights of Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta from Palomino Beach (regarded as one of Colombia’s most beautiful beaches). Colombia’s Caribbean coast is one of the country’s most colourful regions with picture perfect beaches, authentic cuisine, famous festivals, vibrant music and welcoming locals. Two other jewels of the coast include the old, romantic city of Cartagena and the palm-shaded coves and coastal lagoons of Tayrona National Park.
 
5. But it also has a Pacific Coast…
Colombia is the only country in South America with coasts on both the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans. Unfairly overlooked in favour of the Caribbean coast, Colombia’s Pacific coast offers pristine beaches surrounded by jungle, national parks and a few indigenous communities. As an added bonus, these waters also host hundreds of humpback whales from July through to October.  

6. Cartagena’s treasure trove
Cartagena is undisputedly Colombia’s queen of the Caribbean coast. Once favoured for its gold and fortune, Cartagena remains a 16th century treasure of cobbled streets, pastel-coloured walls and bougainvillea covered buildings. The city’s beautiful Old Town - a UNESCO World Heritage Site - is a place to drop all sightseeing routines and leisurely meander through the maze of quaint alleyways, past churches barnacled with gold and street vendors with carts full of fresh juice, cigars and hats and stroll along the beautiful city walls.

 

7. There is a ‘River of Five Colours’
Unique to Colombia, the extraordinary Caño Cristales or ‘River of Five Colours’ is a naturalist’s (and instagrammers!) heaven. Located between the Andes, Amazon and Orinoco, Serrania de la Macarena is where 3 ecosystems come together as a single biological corridor creating a landscape of vibrant colours, unique flora, a variety of wildlife and of course the rainbow river. During June and November the river, waterfalls and natural pools become a kaleidoscope of colour with yellows, blues, reds, blacks and greens emanating from algae unique to this water.
 
8. Discover the ‘Lost City’
Hidden deep in the jungle of the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta mountains sits Ciudad Perdida, the ‘Lost City’. Built by the Tayrona people more than 1,000 years ago, this lost city was built around 700AD, making it more than 600 years older than its Peruvian counterpart, Machu Picchu. There are no trains or buses here to provide easy access to these ruins, but rather it is reached by crossing forests full of exotic fauna and flora, hanging bridges, mountains and waterfalls.
 
9. Freshest coffee around
Colombia produces some of the world’s best coffee and has a budding coffee tourism industry. Colombia's Coffee region (aka the Coffee Triangle) spans three traditional regions; Caldas, Risaralda and Quindío, as well as the newer departments of Norte del Valle del Cauca and Antioquia. You can visit coffee plantations as you would wineries, touring the fields and sampling the finished product.

 

 
10. Its booming cycle-tourism
Colombia is at the heart of South American cycling tourism because of its diverse topography and climate. Cyclists experience a variety of beautiful landscapes and altitudes; from mountainous climbs at high altitude, to humid rainforest routes and cool coastal circuits. Cycling is the perfect sport for escapism (and social distancing) and what better place to cycle than a country that offers over 38 key training trails that meander through national parks and heritage villages?

ProColombia, Colombia Tourism Board is the Regional Sponsor for Central & South America at our next online event, Destinations presents Travel 2021, 7-9 May 2021 (accessible 'til 16 May). Register for free here, so you can contact them directly to find out more information about travelling in Colombia in 2021 and beyond.