Colombia Eco-Adventure

Travel to the Edge of the World

Colombia Eco-Adventure

from

$3,695.00

Cartagena, Medellín & the Pacific Coast

Ready to be blown away by a country that brims with diversity in all its facets? Let’s go ahead and discover Colombia, the eco-adventure jewel. Whether we are talking about its history, culture, climate, landscape, languages or people, diversity is what describes it best. Colombia is El Dorado. Colombia is Gabriel García Márquez. Colombia is salsa. Colombia is paradise.

Going back in time, it was the El Dorado legend that brought Spanish conquerors to the country. They were pursuing the goal to find the so called Land of Gold. The arrival of the Europeans marks the beginning of a fairly dark era for native people. Since then, the continent has never been the same. Today, when looking at it from another perspective, we can state that Colombia has turned into a beautiful melting pot formed by indigenous people and people from Africa and Europe; all of them contributing to the country’s rich culture.

Colombia is where people not only dance to salsa music, but live it. Colombia is the world’s most renowned coffee, the tropical Caribbean beaches, the dense jungle, the snowcapped Andes, and vibrant metropolises; but above all Colombia is home to the happiest people in Latin America. The days when drug trafficking and the internal armed conflict turned the country into an unpredictable source of violence are over. Today, people travelling to Colombia are received with open arms and a warm smile.

Despite that, Colombia is still not widely recognized as a travel destination. Therefore, the numbers of visitors are still limited. Many regions are slowly opening up to tourism. Hence, there are still really exciting and new destinations to be discovered and myriads of breathtaking places to visit in Colombia.

Description

Highlights Include:
  • Exploring Medellin – the City of Eternal Spring
  • Learning about the coffee process from seed to cup
  • Interacting with local communities living in the wild Pacific Coast
  • Searching for flora & fauna inthe dense jungle
  • Wandering the beautiful colonial streets of Cartagena
  • Enjoying the stunning scenery and diversity of Colombia
Day 1: Welcome to Colombia – Medellin

Arrival at Medellín’s International Airport „José María Córdoba“ (JMC) and individual transfers to your accommodation in Medellín. Our hotel is located in the popular Poblado district that offers plenty of charming coffee-shops, bars and restaurants. Tonight we will have the first group dinner at one oft he most famous restaurants of Medellín – El Carmen, at walking distance of your hotel.

Meals: -/-/D
Overnight: Hotel Park 10 Medellin

Day 2: Medellin – Coffee Farm Workshop

Today we experience the traditional coffee culture on a typical Colombian farm. On less than three hectares Don Octavio Acevedo and his family produce their own coffee brand and give us the unique opportunity to observe the whole coffee processing from the plant to the cup. Before lunch you stroll through the coffee fields learning more about growing and collecting the coffee beans. After a traditional countryside lunch you get an insight of the roasting process and furthermore about the best way to prepare the coffee. Get to know the typical day-to-day life of Colombian coffee farmers and support actively small-scale-farmers.

Meals: B/L/-
Overnight: Hotel Park 10 Medellin
Day 3: Medellin to the Wild Pacific Coast

Start the day with a flight in small Chesna Aeroplane from the domestic airport Enrique Olaya Herrera (EOH). After a short flight (40 min.) admiring the endless green tropical forests of the Pacific lowlands of Colombia you arrive in Nuquí, where your guide from the Community Tourism Alliance will meet you and bring you by boat to your accommodation. The eco-lodge is located at Guachalito beach, half an hour down the coast from Nuquí. On the way, enjoy the incredible landscapes where the mountains descent to the sea. After a fresh lunch, enjoy a free afternoon on the beaches of Guachalito, where you can snorkel, swim or just relax in a hammock in front of your eco-hotel.

Meals: B/L/D
Overnight: Eco-Lodge Cabañas La Joviseña

Day 4: Community Visits – Jungle & Mangrove

After breakfast, you will go by boat to the Joví community. From there, a local guide will provide information about the place and the community tourism organization of the locals, before boarding a chingo, an artisanal canoe. Travel by chingo up the Joví River, a shallow, slow moving river where you can see birds and other animals. After an hour, you arrive at a waterfall in the rainforest, where you can take a dip in the crystal-clear water in the middle of the jungle. Return by chingo to Joví.

Afterwards travel by boat to the neighbouring community of Coquí, where you will enjoy a traditional lunch of the Pacific Coast prepared by some of the best cooks in the Choco region. Coquí is located on a small island surrounded by mangrove forest. Accompanied by a guide from the village ecotourism association explore the nearby mangrove forests, which is considered to be one of the best-preserved mangroves in Colombia. Here, you can spot rare birds and tropical plants. After the tour we return by boat to our eco-hotel.

Meals: B/L/D

Overnight: Eco-Lodge Cabañas La Joviseña

Day 5: Community Visits – Jungle, Frogs & Hot Springs

In the morning you travel by boat to Termales, a small community in the south of Guachalito. Upon arriving in Termales the guides from the local community tourism association will lead you on a jungle path where you can observe different species of colourful tropical frogs as well as other animals like birds and monkeys. As you make your way through the jungle, your guide will point out medicinal plants and explain their traditional practices. At the end of the trail, you arrive at a four picturesque waterfalls, which form wide, deep pools where you can swim. After relaxing in the waterfall for a bit, you return to the community of Termales. At the end of the trail you will find a natural hot spring, for which the town is named. Here, we can relax in the hot springs before returning by boat to Guachalito Beach.

Meals: B/L/D

Overnight: Eco-Lodge Cabañas La Joviseña

Day 6: Medellin – The City of Eternal Spring

This morning after breakfast you return to the village of Nuquí by boat, where your flight will take you back to the city of Medellin. After the check-in at your hotel and lunch at the traditional restaurant Hacienda for those with some energy left we offer a city-tour (half-day) in the afternoon that takes you to the most emblematic sights of the Medellín.

Stroll through the hustle and bustle of downtown Medellin to the famous Botero Plaza with an exhibition of the Colombian artist Fernando Botero, whose sculptures have become a landmark of the city. Take the Metro Cable up to Santo Domingo, which has once been a notorious area of gang violence in Medellin. The cable car allows visitors a glimpse into the lives of the marginalized population. While enjoying the spectacular view you learn more about the transformation of Medellin from one of the most dangerous cities in the world into a fascinating melting pot of cultures with the friendliest and warmest people in the world.

Meals: B/L/-
Overnight: Hotel Park 10 Medellin

Day 7: Colonial Cartagena – Walking Tour

This morning we fly from Medellín to Colombia´s Caribbean Coast. Cartagena de Indias is one of the most beautiful cities in America. Its fascinating history as one of the pearls of the time and largest slave port in the colonies, make it a place of big importance and colonial highlights. In Cartagena experience the typical street food on a walking tour through the city.

Explore the historic centre, where you can visit the plazas, churches and the most beautiful and important streets and buildings of the city. Get closer to Colombia´s Caribbean heart tasting a decent selection of different street snacks while strolling through the narrow streets. Try exotic fruits, fried snacks, fresh juices, homemade cheese or the traditional Caribbean sweets made of coconut and sugarcane.

Meals: B/-/-
Overnight: Hotel Boutique Alfiz

Day 8: Mud Volcano & Rum Tasting

This morning you explore the surroundings of Cartagena. 45 minutes from Cartagena, driving on the coastal road between Barranquilla and Santa Marta, you will enter one of the most unique volcanoes. The mud volcano Totumo is a 60 feet high exotic and natural wonder. With its warm and dense mud flowing permanently, it´s impossible to sink into its 800 meters deep crater. Access to the crater is made through a rustic wooden ladder. When you are inside the crater you can enjoy the healing mud, which is said to give efectos milagrosos” and a healthy skin. It also causes the body to relax and feel peaceful, and will release any anxiety or stress. The volcano is surrounded by numerous lakes that provides a beautiful view of the place. After spending some time in the mud, take a bath in the lagoon Piojó, and then return to Cartagena. Later this afternoon we experience a workshop tasting Caribbean Rum – the most popular alcoholic beverage in Latin America and made of sugarcane. Learn more about the history of Rum and the different methods to produce it. We will try different types and brands and try some delicious tapas in the Colonial heart of Cartagena.

Meals: B/L/-
Overnight: Hotel Boutique Alfiz

Day 9: Community Project & Party Chiva

This morning we experience another community project in the outskirts of Cartagena. Due to the lack of work opportunities a group of women – most of them single mothers – found a community association focussed on traditional handicrafts made of coconut. Since 2008 they produce a decent selection of typical Caribbean handicrafts such as bracelets, rings, necklaces. Together with the local women we make our own pieces of coconut-art. Experience the life these women and support this positive project at Colombia´s Caribbean.

This afternoon stroll around the colonial centre of Cartagena and enjoy some leisure time. At night we have a group dinner at a decent restaurant in the colonial heart of the city. After dinner at the traditional restaurant Maria´s we will celebrate the last night of this trip with a very Colombian experience – a party chiva (traditional bus with sound-system and dance-floor) will take us around Cartagena providing an unforgettable night in Colombia.

 Meals: B/-/D
Overnight: Hotel Boutique Alfiz

Day 10: Departure Day or Extend to Elsewhere in Colombia

Today we bid farewell to beautiful Cartegena and transfer to the airport for departure. Option to extend your visit to the Rosario Islands, Bogota or elsewhere in Colombia. Contact info@finisterra.ca for more details. 

**Please note that this itinerary is subject to change. 

Medellin: Hotel Park 10*

Pacific Coast – Choco: Eco-Lodge Cabañas La Joviseña*

Cartagena: Hotel Boutique Alfiz*

*Hotels are subject to change

Tour Inclusions:

    • Services of local guides
    • 9 nights accommodation (based on double occupancy)
    • All transportation per itinerary (bus, boat, private vehicles, etc)
    • Domestic flights (charter & schedule)
    • Meals as per itinerary
    • All sightseeing, activities, and entrances as per itinerary
    • All applicable taxes

Tour Exclusions:

    • International flights (can be arranged through nicola@finisterra.ca)
    • Mandatory travel medical insurance and optional cancellation insurance (can be arranged through nicola@finisterra.ca)
    • Activities and services not mentioned in itinerary
    • Meals and beverages not mentioned in itinerary
    • Items of a personal nature
    • Tips for included meals, guides, drivers, porters, etc.

Date: November 12th, 2016

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