Don't Miss an Inch of Colombia
Our biggest and best Colombia holidays from £2650pp
If you're serious about your Colombia holidays then take a look at this itinerary: 18 full days on holiday in Colombia, taking in everything from the fabulous prehistoric ruins of San Agustin and the laid-back Andean charm of Villa de Leyva, right up to the exquisite colonial architecture of Cartagena and the fabulous Caribbean beaches of the Rosario Islands.
As always, we can customise this itinerary to meet your exact requirements, but if you're looking to make sure you make the most of your Colombia holidays, then we think this itinerary is a perfect starting-point.
- Day One: Arrival in Bogota
- Day Two: City Tour & Gold Museum
- Day Three: Guatavita Crater Lagoon
- Day Four: Travel to Villa de Leyva
- Day Five: Free Day
- Day Six: Ecce Homo Tour
- Day Seven: Travel to San Agustin
- Day Eight: Tour of San Agustin Archaeological Park
- Day Nine: Altos de los Idolos
- Day Ten: Overnight in Neiva
- Day Eleven: Fly to Cartagena
- Day Twelve: City Tour
- Day Thirteen: Free Day in Cartagena
- Day Fourteen: Travel to the Rosario Islands
- Days Fifteen and Sixteen: Relaxing in the Caribbean
- Day Seventeen: Back to Cartagena
- Day Eighteen: Overnight flight back to the UK
Day One – Start of your Colombia Holidays
We will meet you at the airport in Colombia's vibrant capital of Bogota and take you to your hotel in the city's metropolitan north side. After you’ve checked in why not take a stroll to one of the area's many restaurants and bars where you can enjoy your first taste of Colombian food... or maybe just the rum!
Day Two - Tour of Bogota
We’ve kept this morning free to give you chance for a leisurely breakfast and some time to introduce yourself to the city. In the afternoon we will pick you up from your hotel and give you a guided tour of Bogota's historic centre, known as La Candelaria. On the tour we will visit the grand Plaza de Bolivar, as well as the city's astonishing Gold Museum. After an afternoon exploring Bogota's culture and history we will take you back to your hotel, so you can head out for dinner. (Breakfast included)
Day Three - Guatavita Crater Lagoon
This morning we will pick you up and take a short drive to the legendary Guatavita Crater Lake. Believed to be the site behind the legend of El Dorado, the Lake is located in the high altitude woodland reserve of Cacique and it's a great place to see hummingbirds, hawks and more of Colombia's vast array of flora and fauna. After spending the afternoon by the lake discovering how it has played its part in the El Dorado legend, we'll drive on to the market town of Guatavita, whose striking white houses and beautiful square make it a perfect place to take a relaxing stroll. In the late afternoon we will head back to Bogota where we will drop you back at your hotel in time to get some dinner. (B)
Day Four - Travel to Villa de Leyva
This morning we will head north from Bogota towards the charming colonial town of Villa de Leyva, travelling through the lush floral scenery of the Bogota savannah. On the way we will stop at the strange Zipaquira Salt Cathedral, built in the underground tunnels of a former salt mine. We will explore the tunnels and chapels that are carved out of the salt rock, before emerging into the cavern under its central dome. It really is like nowhere else on earth. After our tour we will head back up into the sunlight and continue our journey to Villa de Leyva, one of the area’s most beautiful towns. On arrival we’ll take you to your hotel just off the main plaza, where you can head out and explore this colonial jewel. (B)
Day Five - Free Day in Villa de Leyva
Today you’ll have a free day to explore everything that this gorgeous town has to offer. The town has many attractions including the colonial art museum, the fossil museum or the desert garden of Fibas. This evening why not relax into the Colombian pace of life and enjoy the area's traditional hot toddy - the ‘canelazo’ - in the town’s main square. (B)
Day Six - Ecce Homo and Back to Bogota
After breakfast today we'll hit the road again and return to Bogota, but on the way we’ll stop for a tour of the Convento del Santo Ecce Homo. Founded by the Dominicans in 1620, this is an important place in the country’s religious history and was home to a number of indigenous communities. Once we arrive back in Bogota we'll take you back to your hotel where you’ll have the rest of the evening free. (B)
Day Seven – Travel to San Agustin
This morning we will pick you up and take you to the airport for your flight south to Neiva. Upon arrival at Neiva airport we will head south along a paved road until we reach the small town of San Agustin, enjoying terrific views of the stunning Rio Magdalena Valley. You will have the rest of the day free to relax and enjoy the scenery. (B)
Day Eight - San Agustin Archaeological Park
After breakfast this morning we'll set off to visit the San Agustin Archaeological Park, declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1995. The site is home to enormous pre-historic stone statues which are reminiscent of both Aztec sculpture and the Easter Island Moai, and today we'll learn how they were made and find out more about their cultural significance to the indigenous communities of the area. We will also enjoy a short walk up to the ceremonial Fuente de Lavapatas site, where a labyrinth of carved water channels and pools shows the sophisticated engineering skills of the prehistoric inhabitants, before heading up the hill to the Lavapatas terrace from where you can enjoy some beautiful views over the surrounding countryside.
In the afternoon, we will travel further into the hills of the Colombian Massif, and the higher reaches of the Rio Magadalena, where we'll see a spectacular rocky gorge which forces the river to pass through a tiny gap in the rocks. From here we will drive back through the Archaeological Park to San Agustin and our hotel. (B)
Day Nine - Isnos Archaeological Park
This morning we'll set off for the small town of Isnos to visit this area's Archaeological Parks, the Alto de los Idolos and the Alto de las Piedras. Today we'll see some the world’s most well-preserved prehistoric tombs and some of the largest stone figures found in South America. Moving between these sights gives us breath-taking views of the Macizo Colombiano and the beautiful waterfalls of Salto del Mortiño and Salto de Bordones . After having lunch in Isnos we will return to San Agustin where you'll have the rest of the evening free. (B)
- Why not extend your time here with an extra day to visit the enigmatic rock tombs of the Tierradentro Archaeological Park?
Day Ten - Back to Neiva
After some free time this morning to explore the trails around we head back through the mountains to Neiva. We will arrive late in the afternoon, so now’s a great time to relax and get a good night’s sleep before setting off to the Caribbean coast the following day. (B)
Day Eleven - On to Cartagena
After breakfast today we will pick you up and take you the airport for a flight north to Cartagena, on the Caribbean coast. Cartagena is often referred to as Colombia's most beautiful city and it’s easy to see why! From its amazing colonial architecture to its coral reef-lined shores, Cartagena truly is the pearl of the Caribbean. Upon your arrival we’ll take you to your hotel, just inside the walls of the old city. After checking in, why not take a stroll through the city's many alleyways and side streets, before heading to the Plaza Santo Domingo in El Centro to enjoy a traditional Caribbean dinner of fresh fish, coconut rice and plantain? (B)
Day Twelve - Cartagena City Tour
You will have a free morning to relax and then we will pick you up to begin a tour of this fascinating city. We will climb to the top of the Iglesia de la Popa, constructed in 1606. The church and monastery is located 140 meters above sea level and gives you fantastic 360-degree views of the city. After this we will head to the San Filipe fortress where we’ll walk through the tunnels and passageways to discover how the fortress defended the city through years of (largely English) piracy... Lastly we’ll make a visit to the handicrafts zone of the Bovedas: once the city’s prison; nowadays it’s a great artisanal centre and handicraft market. (B)
Day Thirteen - Free Day in Cartagena
A full free day to enjoy the sights and sounds of Cartagena, take a horse and carriage ride through the cobbled streets of the old city or venture down to the beach to enjoy some Caribbean sunshine. In the evening why not relax at the famous Café del Mar and enjoy some rum whilst watching the sunset? (B)
- If you'd prefer something more organised, why not spend today visiting the jungle and beaches of the fabulous Tayrona National Park, just to the east of Cartagena?
Day Fourteen - On to the Rosario Islands
After breakfast we will take you to the pier for your boat ride to the lovely Rosario islands. Located around 45 minutes away from Cartagena, the islands are surrounded by white sand beaches and coral reefs. Upon arrival you’ll be taken to your hotel where you’ll have the rest of the day to soak up the sun in this island paradise. (B)
Days Fifteen and Sixteen - Relaxing in the Rosario Islands
You’ll have the whole of today and tomorrow free to enjoy the Rosario Islands. You could visit the reef that surrounds the archipelago of Nuestra Señora del Rosario as well as the islands of Tesoro, Mucura and Maravilla. Enjoy scuba diving, snorkelling, water sports or just wander round the island taking in the beauty of the local flora and fauna. (B)
Day Seventeen - Back to Cartagena
After breakfast you’ll have a free morning to squeeze in a last bit of sunbathing before we take you to catch the boat back to Cartagena. We will be at the pier to meet you and take you to your hotel so you can get ready to head out and thoroughly enjoy the last night of your Colombia holidays. (B)
Day Eighteen - Last day of your Colombia Holidays
After a final free morning here in Cartagena, we will pick you up and take you to the airport for a short flight back to Bogota. Most flights to the UK leave in the evening, so you’ll arrive with plenty of time to check-in for your international flight home. (B)
The standard price for our Gran Colombia holidays is £2650 per person, which is based on two sharing a double or twin room in our standard hotels.
That price includes all your accommodation, internal transport, transfers, tours, guides and entrance fees, plus breakfast every day.
We don't have any "local payments" or sneaky charges: everything you have read about on this itinerary is included in that price. And because everything we do is tailor-made, we don't have fixed departure dates or minimum numbers for our trips. Outside of national holidays or other special events, this price is valid for the whole of 2020.
So with the exception of a few meals, everything on your holiday is included. What we don't include as standard is your international flights, because with these you have a huge range of options depending on the date you want to travel, the route you want to fly, and your preferred departure airport in the UK.
We aren't tied to any particular airline, and we will be delighted to discuss all options with you, or you can even book the flights yourself if you prefer: it's totally up to you.
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