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Amazon Basin

Amazon. The very word evokes images of pristine jungle, incredible wildlife and, of course, one world-famous river. The region known to Colombians as Amazonia is a vast 285,000 sq-miles (643,000-sq-km) slice of rainforest accounting for a third of Colombia's total area – about the size of California – and spread over some eight of the country's departments. There are no roads here, just fast-flowing waterways and vast tracts of wilderness where, for now at least, humans have had relatively little impact on nature, and indigenous groups deep in the jungle have managed to keep their cultures intact.

Tourism is still relatively undeveloped here, and what little there is can be found in and around the towns of Leticia and Puerto Nariño. Yet precisely because of the lack of development, a visit here remains a transcendent experience, from thrilling rainforest treks to simple hammock siestas alongside the sounds of the jungle.

Top attractions

These are our favorite local haunts, touristy spots, and hidden gems throughout Amazon Basin.