Explore today’s Colombia, discovering its incredible culture, gastronomy and biodiversity on a journey that reveals how a commitment to social transformation made it a must-see destination. Marvel at the vibrant street art of once-troubled Medellin and bask in the many splendors of beautiful Cartagena.
- Experience the lively and colorful Paloquemao market in Bogotá and sample the fruits, vegetables and herbs on display while also learning about the Peace Agreement.
- Descend into the inspiring Salt Cathedral and learn the history of this amazing underground church built by miners.
- Try the indigenous sport of Tejo and taste viche, a traditional sugar cane liquor originated by colonial-era slaves.
- Discover the parks and graffiti art of Medellin and learn how it overcame its troubled past.
- Visit Cartagena to immerse yourself in the rich local culture, gastronomy and music.
- Explore an organic flower farm in Santa Elena and meet with a flower vendor in the mountains of Antioquia.
DIA 1 ARRIVE BOGOTÁ, COLOMBIA
Arrive in Bogotá, the capital of Colombia, where you are met and privately transferred to your hotel. Tonight, gather for a festive welcome dinner
DIA 2 BOGOTÁ | A MARKET VISIT & THE PEACE AGREEMENT
Explore Paloquemao market with a guide, sampling local delicacies as you go. Peruse the flower market before heading to Monserrate, a 10,000-foot peak you ascend by funicular railway or cable car. Explore La Candelaria, the oldest part of Bogotá, distinguished by its many colonial-era buildings. Visit the Plaza de Bolivar and the Gold Museum, viewing its vast collection of pre-Hispanic artifacts. Throughout your day, listen as your Resident Tour Director explains crucial aspects of Colombia’s history, including the build up to the Peace Agreement (signed in September 2016) that ended more than 50 years of conflict. In turn, gain insight into the current moment, which is setting the foundation for a bright future. Tonight, savor dinner at Criterion, one of the country’s finest restaurants.
DIA 3 BOGOTÁ | SALT CATHEDRAL & VICHE TASTING
Venture to the Salt Cathedral near Zipaquira. Descend into this amazing underground church built in a salt mine, passing naves depicting the life, death and resurrection of Jesus, and enter the 82-foot-high main cathedral. Afterward, enjoy lunch at a local restaurant before trying the indigenous sport of Tejo. Then, taste viche, a liquor originated by colonial-era slaves that’s become a symbol of modern Afro-Colombian culture
DIA 4 MEDELLÍN | A TRIUMPH OF SOCIAL TRANSFORMATION
Fly to Medellín, to visit the Parque San Antonio and view sculptures by Fernando Botero, and continue to the Museum of Antioquia to marvel at its pre-Columbian treasures. Next, ride on the Metrocable gondola lift system for views over the once-notorious neighborhood of Santo Domingo Savio, and now an example of the social transformation the city has undergone. Stop in the Comuna 13 neighborhood to learn more about public renovation projects undertaken here and visit a business they positively impacted. Then, Ride Like a Local by tram and cable car, which have greatly improved community accessibility. Tonight, dine at renowned El Cielo Restaurant.
DIA 5 MEDELLIN | GUATAPE, EL PENOL ROCK & SANTA ELENA
Journey to picturesque Guatape, admiring breathtaking Antioquia along the way. Stroll Guatape’s cobblestoned streets past colorful pastel-painted buildings and view massive Peñol rock. Meet with a local silletero (flower vendor) to learn about life at their organic flower farm.
DIA 6 CARTAGENA | PRIVATE RUM & CHOCOLATE TASTINGS
Fly to Cartagena to indulge in a private tasting of a variety of rums paired with chocolate and local bites, as you listen to colorful tales of pirates. Dine this evening at the hotel.
DIA 7 CARTAGENA | WONDERS OF THE CITY
Discover the best of this exuberant city. Start at La Popa hill, taking in surrounding vistas. Continue to Cartagena’s colonial walled city and walk its picturesque streets and plazas. Then, visit the Castle San Felipe Barajas, built to defend the city from pirates. Proceed to the church of San Pedro Claver with its fine collection of stained-glass windows as well as the Naval Museum. Stop at the Inquisition Palace to view its Baroque entrance hall and finish at the city’s 16th-century cathedral. Dine in the enchanting Getsemaní district.
DIA 8 CARTAGENA | CULINARY EXPERIENCE & SUNSET CRUISE
Explore the peaceful waters of La Virgen swamp, a coastal lagoon separated from the Caribbean Sea by a narrow bank of sand and inhabited by dense mangrove forests as well as over one hundred species of birds. Board a boat to navigate tunnels of overhanging vegetation that lead to a paradise of native crustaceans. There, in the midst of a shallow mirror of water, cast a fishing net or pull up traps to access some of the abundant seafood, such as blue crab, dwelling here. Back on shore, gather at a kitchen to watch how a traditional fishermen and local food concierge prepare what you’ve caught during a cooking class that highlights local ingredients and the catch of the day. Savor the results for lunch to culminate a richly authentic Chef ’s Table experience. This evening, transfer to a private catamaran for a harbor cruise and enjoy a Scenic Sundowner while taking in the views of the city. Once back on shore, celebrate your extraordinary Colombian adventure with a farewell dinner.
DIA 9 DEPART CARTAGENA
After breakfast, transfer to the airport for your departing flight.