Columbia Luxury Travel and Vacation Guide

 

 Colombia is the only country in South America with both Caribbean and Pacific coastlines. This country has dramatic beaches, majestic mountains and rainforests, friendly people and beautiful cities. Although the dry season is the best time to travel to this country, you won't encounter many difficulties getting around during the rainy season. The traditional vacation time for the people of Colombia is from late December to the middle of January, so you may encounter getting hotel reservations during this period. Events take place here all through the year, such as the Carnaval de Blancos y Negroes, which is the largest festival and takes place in January. You can take part in a six-day trek to the ruins of La Ciudad Perdida, take a trip into the mountains, enjoy snorkelling and diving on the coast or take an adventurous jungle tour.

Columbia Attractions

Enjoy duty-free shopping in San Andres as well as the charm and beauty of the island of the archipelago. Join the pilgrims that travel to the Santuario de Nuestra Señora de las Lajas Church, just 4 miles from Ipiales or spend time at the holiday resorts of either Bahai Solano or El Valle.

City of Bogota

The capital of Colombia is an eclectic mix of all things Colombian. Here you will find magnificent churches that have stood for centuries, modern buildings and small markets. The Musee del Oro contains many relics dating back to the time before the Spaniards came and the Musee Nacional contains a wealth of artifacts detailing the history of the country. La Candelaria is the oldest part of the city where many of the buildings are still as they were in colonial times. See the frescoes of Iglesia de Santa Clara and the most richly decorated church in the country at the Iglesia de San Ignacio. You can see the varied plant life of the country at the Jardin Botánico José Celestino Mutis,

Cartagena and the Caribbean Coast

Cartagena is a legendary city on the Caribbean coast of Colombia that has been painted and photographed many time throughout its history. This Spanish colonial town still has the walls around it as it did centuries ago and contains many monasteries, palaces and museums for you to visit. Nearby there are Spanish forts for you to visit and the Islas del Rosario have spectacular coral reefs, which entice many snorkellers and divers. Visit exquisite beaches, mud volcanoes and villages deep within the jungle.

Travel to and within Colombia

Fly into the international airport at Bogota from many cities in North America and Europe. There are also road connections, but you should be very careful if you take this route because of the drug cartels and guerrillas. You can also travel by sea to many ports on the Pacific and the Caribbean with ferries to the US and Mexico.

With its well developed airline system, you will not have any difficulty using the domestic flights to get from one destination in Colombia to another. The main roads are fine for bus or car travel, but the side roads are in a deplorable state. Even within the cities, buses are slow and taxis are the preferred method of travel.

Columbia Language

Spanish is the official language, but English is taught in the schools of the country. There are many people in this country who have lived and worked in the US, so you won?t have any difficulty finding someone that can speak English.

Columbia Food and Drink

It is very common to eat buneulos, deep fried balls with cheese dough, and arepas, thick corn tortillas made with cheese. In Bogota, you can taste various types of tamales and the empanadas here are entirely different from those of Mexico. Sancocho is a thick chicken soup that contains part of the chicken and Bandeja paisa, which includes rice, beans, fried plantain, arepa, fried egg, chorizo, chicharron (pork skin) and some sort of meat, is also quite popular. There are many varieties of fruit juices and you haven?t tasted coffee until you?ve had Colombian coffee. The national alcoholic beverage is Aguardiente, which has a strong taste of anise. You should drink this in short sips with ice or as shots.

Columbia Luxury Shopping and Safety

The larger cities have shopping malls where you can shop for designer labels. Every village and town has a market where you can buy unique handicrafts. The clothes and leather goods are very cheap by North American standards and are of high quality. The Colombian style of jewellery resembles that of pre-Columbian times and is something that most tourists want to buy.

 If you stay in the large cities and towns or are part of a tour group, you should not have any safety concerns about travelling in Columbia. However, in the lesser populated and rural areas there are many guerrillas because of the booming drug trade. You do have to be very careful about your documents and valuables in the cities because there are many beggars and shantytowns.

Columbia Food and Drink

It is very common to eat buneulos, deep fried balls with cheese dough, and arepas, thick corn tortillas made with cheese. In Bogota, you can taste various types of tamales and the empanadas here are entirely different from those of Mexico. Sancocho is a thick chicken soup that contains part of the chicken and Bandeja paisa, which includes rice, beans, fried plantain, arepa, fried egg, chorizo, chicharron (pork skin) and some sort of meat, is also quite popular. There are many varieties of fruit juices and you haven?t tasted coffee until you?ve had Colombian coffee. The national alcoholic beverage is Aguardiente, which has a strong taste of anise. You should drink this in short sips with ice or as shots.

 Columbia Entertainment

There are many nightclubs and discos in the cities and towns of Colombia. For something to soothe your soul, the Colon Theatre in Bogota regularly presents opera, ballet and many concerts featuring local and international entertainers.

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