Map of Real Colombia including Colombia

Discover one of South America’s best kept secrets

No doubt about it, Colombia is one of the world’s friendliest countries. Never been there before? Let us paint the picture for you. Beaches, mountains, coffee plantations, grand old Spanish buildings, salsa clubs, exotic fruits, flower bouquets, hummingbirds, and smiles the size of your arm. Throw in a volcanic mud bath, and you've got yourself a holiday.

This trip is for 18 to 29-year-olds

Some of our under-30 travellers prefer to get around with people their own age. If that’s you, you’re in the right place!

Over 29? We’ve got over 900 other great adventures to choose from for solo travellers, friends, families, food lovers, hiking enthusiasts, and more.

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Terms & Conditions

Start
Bogota, Colombia
Finish
Cartagena, Colombia
Destination
Colombia
Style
Basix
Theme
18 to 29s
Code
GGYS
Physical rating
Ages
Min 18, Max 29
Group size
Min 1, Max 16

Travel solo, together

You're never alone when travelling solo with Intrepid

Why you'll love this trip

  • Get under the skin of what was once the most notorious neighbourhood in Colombia on a guided tour through Medellin’s Comuna 13

  • Lose yourself in the colonial gem of Cartagena, wander through the cobbled streets, packed with beautiful churches, monasteries, and mansions.

  • Take a hike through the lush Cocora Valley, home to colourful hummingbirds and the world's tallest palm trees

  • Go behind the scenes of the beans during a stay on a traditional coffee estancia located deep in Colombia's coffee country

  • Explore Colombia’s Caribbean coast with two free days in Palomino. Chill-out on the beach, hike through the jungle, or dine on delicious seafood – the choice is yours!

Is this trip right for you?

  • The Cocora Valley hike is pretty rigorous, so you'll need to be fit and have sturdy walking shoes. If you'd rather relax instead, you're free to opt out of this activity.

  • Colombia enjoys a stable climate all year round, but it can get pretty darn hot and humid in the north. Be sure to drink plenty of water and wear adequate sun protection, especially in Cartagena on the coast.

Itinerary

Bienvenidos a Colombia! Welcome to Colombia. Settle into your accommodation in Bogota, then meet your leader and fellow travellers for an orientation walk around this good-looking town at 1 pm. Check out the colonial-era buildings framed by mountains. For those arriving later there will be a second group meeting at 6 pm. Afterwards, why not head out for dinner with the group.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Bogota - Leader led Orientation walk in Candelaria neigborhood
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
Today is an early start as we leave the hotel to explore the colorful Paloquemao Market. Get to know the locals and try new flavors! From the market, our transfer will take you straight to the airport to take a take a short flight (approximately 1 hour) to Colombia's famous coffee region and transfer (up to 2 hours depending on the flight) to the beautiful village of Salento. Take the time to stroll through its quaint streets and admire the colours of the 'paisa' architecture. For some tasty local food, trout is the way to go. There are lots of different ways to enjoy it, but mostly it's served with a rich, garlicky cheese sauce. Colombia's national sport, Tejo, is a popular pastime in Salento - think bocce with gunpowder! If you're game, why not visit the local tejo hall and give it a go.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Salento - Tejo game
  • Bogota - Visit to Paloquemao market
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Travel by jeep out to the Cocora Valley, home of the tall wax palm (Colombia's national tree). Spend the morning checking out the region's awesome scenery on foot, maybe hiking up to Acaime Reserve where the hummingbirds feed. The hike to Acaime (approximately 5 hours) isn't easy, it has some steep and slippery sections, so you'll need good walking shoes, plus plenty of water and snacks. Please note lunch isn't included during the hike, so if you're someone who gets super hangry you may want to pack your own snacks too. If you'd rather take it easy, you can explore the valley on your own, then cruise back to town in a jeep. Later, travel deep into Colombia's coffee region for a two-night stay in an old-school coffee estancia.
Accommodation
  • Coffee Estancia (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Coffee Region - Cocora Valley visit
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Dinner
Thanks to its tropical altitude and fertile volcanic soil, Colombia is one of the world’s biggest coffee producers. You’ll get to know this addictive little bean a whole lot better on a guided tour of the coffee plantation and processing centre. Dig into the history of the plant, learning the inside story of the industry that's long buoyed the country's economy. See how the beans are grown and harvested, processed, dried, roasted and ground, and then sample first-hand what all the fuss is about. Try different types of coffee grains and get a lesson on preparing different types of coffees, finishing it all off with a steaming cup of freshly brewed joe. Afterwards, relax amid the estancia's beautiful surrounds of sloping green hills and valleys.
Accommodation
  • Coffee Estancia (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Manizales - Coffee plantation tour, coffee tasting and coffee making
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Jump aboard a comfortable public bus and head (approximately 8 hours) to Medellin. Your leader will take you on an orientation walk of this beautiful city. Having spent the 1980s and 90s with an international reputation as one of the world's most dangerous cities (no thanks to Pablo Escobar's notorious drug cartel), Medellin has turned itself around to become one of the most exciting cities in South America. And with some of the country's finest museums, parks and architecture (as well as a much safer and comfortable atmosphere now) it's easy to see why it's getting more popular.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Today we take part in a Barrio transformation tour. Take the metrocable Acevedo to meet your local guide and discover more about how the transformation in Medellin has happened in one of its most populated neighborhoods.We will explore its history, the struggle of its people, their outstanding achievements and the different faces of the city’s recent transformation.
Back in Medellin, you might want to search out one of the city's pumping salsa bars (Medellin's nightlife may well be the best in Colombia).
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Barrio Transformation Tour
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Get out and about in Medellin. You might want to visit the Museo de Antioquia to see some of Botero's famous works or get more modern at the beautiful Museo de Arte Moderno. Or go further afield on an optional day trip to Santa Fe de Antioquia. This 16th-century township has kept a lot of its colonial-era pizazz. The Bridge of the West, Metropolitan Cathedral and House of Two Palms are sure to provide nice photo-ops, and the plaza is also home to a daily market where vendors sell varieties of locally-grown Tamarind product (you can try a few samples). One of the best things to do here is just moseying through the cobblestone streets and taking in the local scene.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Optional Activities
  • Medellin - Museo de Antioquia entrance fee - USD6
  • Medellin - Day trip to Santa Fe de Antioquia - USD6
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Fly to Santa Marta (approximately 1 hour). Take a private transfer (approximately 5 hours) north to Palomino, a small town on the Caribbean coast of Colombia, in the Guajira region. It's about 40 minutes away from Tayrona National Park. This afternoon your leader will show you around Palomino town. For dinner, take the chance to feast on some fresh seafood like lion fish or prawns (Sua is a good place to go for dinner).
Accommodation
  • Hostel (1 night)
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Today is a free day with no scheduled activities. Maybe take the chance to hike in Tayrona National Park and enjoy the stunning view of the majestic peaks of the Sierra Nevada ranges standing right next to the beautiful Caribbean Sea. Or just spend some time chilling on the beach. It’s a tough life.

Accommodation
  • Hostel (1 night)
Optional Activities
  • Palomino – Tayrona National Park visit - USD22
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Special Information
The indigenous communities that inhabit this area request temporary closure of the National Park so that the land may rest and rejuvenate. The periods of closure in 2022 have not been officially announced, although normally it will be a period of 15 days in February, June and October respectively. Your leader will give you more info at the group meeting. One of the alternative activities to do should the park be closed is to visit the indigenous sites of Tayronaka or Katanzama.
Travel to Cartagena (approx. 5 hours). The leader will take you on a short orientation walk around the hotel in one of South America's most historic cities. Then it’s your free time for today and tomorrow to explore the city. Head out to explore the Old City as you please. The inner walled town is the main attraction – it's packed with beautiful churches, monasteries, and mansions. Maybe visit San Felipe de Barajas Castle, the biggest of the fortresses, or head out of town for a mud bath at Volcan de Lodo El Totumo. Visit Playa Blanca (White Beach) and the coral islands, or people-watch in Getsemani, Plaza de la Trinidad, where kids play football and singers strum their guitars. Your tour leader will be on hand to give you tips of how to make best use of your time to explore the walled city and beyond.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (2 nights)
Meals Included
  • Breakfast (2)
It's all over. Adios! Your trip finishes in Cartagena this morning.
Meals Included
  • Breakfast

Meals

11 breakfasts, 1 lunch, 2 dinners

Transport

Plane, local bus, Private vehicle

Accommodation

Hotel (10 nights), Coffee Estancia (2 nights)

Included activities

  • Bogota - Leader led Orientation walk in Candelaria neigborhood
  • Salento - Tejo game
  • Bogota - Visit to Paloquemao market
  • Coffee Region - Cocora Valley visit
  • Manizales - Coffee plantation tour, coffee tasting and coffee making
  • Barrio Transformation Tour

Dates & availability

Trip departures are unavailable.

There are currently no scheduled departures on our Real Colombia trip. If you are interested in other trips in the region visit one of the links below.

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Important notes

Travellers on Intrepid trips are required to produce proof of full vaccination against COVID-19. Read details here.

1. A single supplement is available if you’d prefer not to share a room on this trip. The single supplement excludes Days 3,4 (Coffee Estancia) where you will be in shared accommodation and is subject to availability. Please speak to your booking agent for further information.
2. Please provide your full name exactly as per passport at the time of booking (including any middle names listed on your passport) for Entrance tickets to certain sites. Additionally on certain trips it's needed to book bus, train or flight tickets. Fees may apply for amendments to details within 45 days of departure, and in some cases you will be required to cover the cost of issuing new tickets. Delays to provide this information may result in booking fees or changes to your itinerary.

Essential trip information

Want an in-depth insight into this trip? Essential Trip Information provides a detailed itinerary, visa info, how to get to your hotel, what's included - pretty much everything you need to know about this adventure and more.

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