2 Weeks in Colombia: Bogota-Medellin-Cartagena. Suggested itineraries?
Replies: 5 - Last Post: Sep 4, 2012 10:31 PM Last Post By: myrestlessfeet
Aug 10, 2012 8:10 PM
I will be spending two weeks in Colombia, from August 24 to September 8. I fly into Bogota, and fly out of Cartagena. I plan to stop in Medellin for a few days, but on the route (by bus) between Bogota and Cartagena what are some interesting towns worth visiting? My interests include:
• Colonial charm and beauty
• Not overly touristy; perhaps underrated or off the typical tourist radar
• Good markets and food
• Local arts and crafts
• Relatively inexpensive (like $25-$35 US per night for a single room w/ private bath)
• Natural beauty
These interests apply to any place city or town I may visit on my trip. I also like good coffee, artsy/bohemian atmospheres, live music, mellow bars (not really into "partying"), friendly, interesting people and almost anything culturally relevant.
I speak enough Spanish to get by just fine, and I'm a pretty experienced traveler. I'm single guy in my thirties, and this is my first visit to Colombia. For insights into my tastes, my favorite cities include San Miguel de Allende, Queretaro, Oaxaca, Merida, Chiang Mai, Bangkok, Sevilla, Portland (OR) and NYC.
Any tips on where to stay (specific neighborhoods and/or hotels) in any town or city, must-see places, what things or places to avoid or any general info would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!
Aug 11, 2012 11:18 PM
1Cartagena and Medellin are both great cities! I just got back from a 5 week trip to Colombia. I am a single female in my thirties.
I recommend Mompox for somewhere to go along the way... it is not AT ALL hard to get to and is a lovely SAFE and interesting town with few tourists. I don't know why.. when I went from Cartagena, there is a direct bus.. and on my way out I took some collectivos to Turbo ...very easy, quick and efficient(was headed on to Capurgana) stayed at La Casa Amarilla... great guesthouse!
If you are headed over only for a short time... look at flying between the cities...there were some great deals recently where flying was cheaper ( and obviously) much faster than taking a bus.
I also went to Salento... a nice town... and then flew from Armenia( about 1 hr away from Salento) back to Bogota.
I often stayed in dorm rooms, but also booked single rooms and they were much cheaper than the $25 to $35 you are after.
With this time from you could do something like..
Medellin-take a day trip to Guatape or other nearby town
Depends on how quick you want to travel.
Have fun! Colombia is fabulous and very easy to travel in!
Aug 13, 2012 11:28 AM
2You could also consider doing the trip via Bucaramanga with stops in San Gil - Barichara - while in the later, try the walk - Guanes. then proceed - Medellin.
If you still fancy Bogota - Medellin you could graze coffee country via Manizales - 60k - Santa Rosa de Cabal,that & stop in Jardin enroute - Medellin - Tolu/Covenas - Cartagena... This will result in some serious window time,however it will afford you a good look of the country.
Aug 14, 2012 3:02 AM
3In Bogota, things that you cannot miss are,
The Gold Museum (downtown Bogota),
The Fernando Botero art gallery
Monserrate (church on top of a hill with great city views)
and if you drive a little (30 minutes north) the salt cathedral in Zipaquira its amazing and it holds the largest underground cross in the world. And Villa de Leiva is a little bohemian town north of bogota that is beautiful.
Aug 21, 2012 2:42 PM
Sep 4, 2012 10:31 PM
5So many places to see and not enough time. It is too bad you don't have at least 1 month. I once lived in Bogota for a year. I liked it but I like a place called Sabaneta better. You won't see this on any travel guides. I lived there for over a year. There a beautiful rapid transit system that will take you there in about 15 minutes from Medellin.
Between Sabaneta and Medellin is a place called Envigada. That is where Pablo Escobar ruled all of Colombia from! These towns are seeped in history. They are very safe also. Just don't start ranting on Pablo in these places.
If you are with friends you could rent an entire 3brm furnished apartment at http://welovebogota.com.
Have a great trip!
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