Which Jabs and Immunisations for Colombia Do I Need?
Despite its tropical location, Colombia's varied geography means that you don't necessarily need a whole host of immunisations for Colombia holidays. Although we always recommend that you take professional medical advice before any holiday in Colombia, this guide will hopefully help you make some informed decisions.
Standard Jabs and Immunisations for Colombia
There are no compulsory jabs or immunisations for Colombia, but it is almost always recommended that you have had boosters for the following in the past ten years:
- Hepatitis A
We know that sometimes travellers are advised to have a rabies jab when taking a holiday in Colombia. Please do take professional advice on this matter but we would suggest that rabies is not widespread in Colombia and you will never be further than 24 hours from a rabies jab on any of our holidays in Colombia, so if necessary we can get you the jab within Colombia.
Yellow Fever and Malaria
Malaria and Yellow Fever are both present in many areas of Colombia, and most doctors will advise a short course of anti-malarials and a yellow fever jab for most holidays in Colombia. Both diseases are especially prevalent in jungle areas below 1600mm where mosquitoes are more likely to be present.
However, there are areas of Colombia where there is little or no risk of either malaria or yellow fever, and so depending on the itinerary of your Colombia holiday, you may be able to dispense with medications for both of them. Specifically, the central mountains in and around Bogota are high enough to avoid both diseases, and there is also no malaria risk in the Cartagena area.
No matter where you are in Colombia, however, we always advise taking appropriate measures to avoid being bitten by any insects. These include wearing long trousers and long-sleeved tops where appropriate, and using insect repellent when possible - in jungle areas of Colombia a DEET-based repellent with a DEET level of 50% is preferable.
These measures will also help protect you against another mosquito-borne disease which is prevalent in urban areas in Colombia - dengue fever. Also known as 'breakbone fever' because of the joint pains it produces, dengue fever is present throughout Colombia and there is no immunisation for it, so preventative measures are the only defence.