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The old city, La Candelaria, 
in downtown Bogota.

Colombia Travel Fast Facts

Getting there: International flights from major world cities to the capital Bogota, as well as to Medellín, Cali, Barranquilla, Bucaramanga, Cartagena, Pereira and San Andres Islands.
What to see: Bogota, Cartagena, Santa Marta and Tayrona National Park, and Montenegro and the Colombian National Cofee Park
Currency: Colombian peso
Official language(s):

"Colombia - the only risk is wanting to stay longer" is the country's official tourism slogan.

Indeed, one of the most beautiful, but least appreciated countries on the continent, Colombia is often thought of as the cocaine cartel center of the world. And if you read the headlines, it's often for good reason.

However, with a little street savvy (and staying close to the major tourist centers) it's still possible to enjoy all that Colombia has to offer in terms of stunning natural beauty, deep cultural roots ...and lots of delicious coffee!

As the land of light and shadow, Colombia's dynamics are best exemplified by its capital in Bogota - in how its modern architecture, stately museums and churches contrast sharply with its slums and utter poverty that exist in its shantytowns.

Do visit the cultural offerings, but also don't miss the hustle and bustle of Bogota daily life with a visit to Plaza de Santander, or a Sunday afternoon stroll through the colorful flea market at Mercado de las Pulgas.

For nature lovers, Colombia's eco-tourism industry booms with stunning tours of national parks such as the Colombian National Coffee Park in Montenegro, and the spectacular Tayrona National Park near Santa Marta.

sunset over Cartegena
Sunset over Cartagena, Colombia

Of course, no visit to Colombia would be complete without a stop at Cartagena and the legendary Caribbean coast. The colonial port city and surroundings not only offer beautiful beaches and colorful coral reefs for snorkeling or diving, but an eyeful of amazing colonial architecture seen in its historic mansions, palaces and monasteries.

DID YOU KNOW? Colombia Travel Fun Facts

Colombia is for the birds.

• More bird species can be found in Colombia than any other country in the world, more than Europe and North America combined.

• You can't visit Colombia without trying the country's most popular snack, arepa, a flatbread made from corn flour and various fillings.

• Native son Fernando Botero is famous for his paintings and sculptures of massively obese people and animals, with many of his works on public display in Plaza Botero in Medellin.

• If you live in the US, chances are the cut flowers you bought came from Colombia. About 70% of the flowers, grown on farms outside Bogota, are exported to the United States.

Medical tourism for dental care and cosmetic surgery is popular in Colombia, due to the high quality of treatment and relatively low cost.

More about Colombia tourist attractions around the Web:

Colombia travel guide
- Check out this comprehensive guide from Wikitravel with insider tips on major attractions, overview of Colombia foods and cuisine, getting around by plane, train, metro, bus or taxi, safety tips and an extensive discussion on cultural mannerisms and travel etiquette.

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