11 Day Kaleidoscope of Colombia

11 Day Kaleidoscope of Colombia


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Please Note: Land Price does not include airfare, departure or arrival transfers, airline taxes and fuel surcharges.

Overview

Dates & Prices

*Please Note: This vacation includes an internal air component which will not be discounted from the listed price below.
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Itinerary

Countries Visited

Colombia

Tour Itinerary

DAY 1, Friday - Depart for Colombia
Depart for Colombia, a country of great diversity, culture, and natural beauty. Arrive in the cosmopolitan capital city of Bogotá; transfer to the hotel. The rest of the day is at leisure to explore the city independently, with its more than 60 galleries and museums
Overnight: Bogota

DAY 2, Saturday - Bogota City Tour
After breakfast, visit the colorful Paloquemao market. Your knowledgeable Tour Manager will provide insight into the delicious and often overlooked Colombian cuisine. Hot tamales are a favorite staple here, stuffed with chicken and corn in a banana leaf. You may have a chance to sip freshly pressed tropical fruit juice or try other Colombian specialties. Continue to the colonial section of La Candelaria, stopping at Plaza de Bolivar, the city's main square surrounded by the Cathedral, Palace of Congress, the Cardinal's Palace and the colonial church of El Sagrario. On to the astonishing Gold Museum with its impressive collection of pre-Hispanic native gold crafts and to the Fernando Botero Museum, housing some of the major paintings and sculptures of this contemporary Colombian artist. The afternoon is at leisure to further explore the city or, join the optional Funicular Train Ride* that takes you up to Monserrate Mountain. At more than 10,000 feet above sea level, see outstanding views of downtown Bogota and visit the 17th-century church and its El Señor Caído Shrine. Tonight, enjoy a light dinner with your fellow travelers and an orientation meeting with your Tour Manager on the delightful journey of Colombia that awaits you*Funicular train may be substituted with a cable car ride without notice
Optional: Monserrate Funicular Train Ride (PM)
Overnight: Bogota
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner

DAY 3, Sunday - Zipaquira Salt Cathedral
Depart this morning for Zipaquira. Upon arrival, visit the amazing Salt Cathedral, “The First Wonder of Colombia”, built within the chambers of a salt mine. Afterward, enjoy lunch at a local restaurant. Later, stop to play an energetic local game of Tejo*, the national sport of Colombia. Originally, gameplay consisted of hurling golden discs into a hole, at a distance of about 65 feet. However, the Conquistadors did make their own subtle improvement to the game - they added explosives. Today, the game is played with metal disks in fields across the country. Learn how to play and try your hand at throwing the disk. The afternoon is at leisure. Tonight, perhaps dine at one of the restaurants offering delectable Colombian cuisine or walk through the trendy Zona Rosa district, known for its lively pub scene or Parque 93, a commercial and recreational hub of the city*Colombian laws prohibit all people under 18 from entering places where tejo is played
Overnight: Bogota
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

DAY 4, Monday - Flight to Pereira, Tour the Cocora Valley and Salento Tour
Depart Bogota on a flight to Pereira in the center of Colombia's Zona Cafetera (Coffee Zone), a region of great natural beauty, charming colonial towns and welcoming people. Upon arrival, drive to the lush Cocora Valley, one of the most striking landscapes in Colombia, part of Los Nevados National Park. Here you may see hummingbirds and endemic yellow-eared parrots that made the park their home. Time for a walk in the valley before heading into the cloud forest to discover the biodiversity of the flora and fauna. Walk along an ecological pathway through the tallest wax palms in the world, the national tree of Colombia, reaching up to 200 feet tall. Enjoy lunch at a traditional restaurant and sample grilled trout - a local favorite before heading towards Salento with its beautiful traditional architecture. At Bolivar Square, see the colorful balconies and rows of handicraft shops. Before continuing to an approximate 3 hours drive to Manizales, linger at the Cocora Viewpoint to see the breathtaking panoramic views of the valleys below
Overnight: Manizales
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 5, Tuesday - Tour a Coffee Plantation
This morning, explore the lovely city of Manizales with its beautiful parks, mountain views, and streams. Walk to the Plaza Bolivar in the city center, highlighted by the massive Cathedral of Manizales, famous for its elaborate gold canopy and beautiful, large stained-glass windows. Be sure to stop at a local café or shop to try some of the regional favorites. Afterward, visit the Hacienda Venecia coffee plantation to understand the complicated process of producing the world's finest coffee. The highlight of the tour is a genuine coffee experience - you'll analyze the aroma, flavor, and body of a great cup of coffee. After all, coffee is Colombia's main agricultural export!
Overnight: Manizales
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner

DAY 6, Wednesday - Medellin
Early wake up for a long drive* today but extremely rewarding. Depart Manizales for Medellin and admire the stunning scenery as you journey through coffee plantations, running rivers, and majestic mountain ranges. Discover Medellin located in the beautiful Aburra Valley, surrounded on four sides by lush green mountains and rugged peaks. Named the "City of Eternal Spring" because of its year-round mild temperatures, the city bustles with non-stop activity. Head first to Botero Plaza accented by the artist's huge metal sculptures and home to the Museo de Antioquia with its outstanding collection of Botero's paintings as well as other famous international artists. Continue to Barefoot Park, a delightful zen-inspired public area that encompasses a small bamboo forest and sandy areas. Return to your hotel in the late afternoon. The rest of the day is free to enjoy this lovely city on your own. In the evening, try a typical Antioquian dinner or, visit the upscale and very chic El Poblado neighborhood known for its trendy restaurants and clubs*Due to road construction, the drive will take longer than expected, therefore, an early morning departure is necessary to make up for the delay
Overnight: Medellin
Meals: Breakfast

DAY 7, Thursday - Medellin City & Santa Elena
Today, see a different side of Medellin with a visit to the barrios. Witness the transformation of the city once known for its drug violence, to a safe venue to soak up culture and everyday life. Begin with a Metrocable cable-car ride that takes you high over the barrios offering a bird's eye view of the city. Visit the barrio of Santo Domingo and the Biblioteca España,* an integral project to the city’s urban infrastructure improvement. This ultra modern library complex, on a hillside above the city consists of three buildings, covered in black stone tiles. Next, visit the Santa Elena area, near Medellin and one of the most typical “Antioqueño” towns, where the “Silleteros” tradition, linked to the flower production of the area, was born. Enjoy a traditional lunch with a local family and experience a unique opportunity to learn about the values and traditions of the Antioqueños. Afterward, continue with a visit to the town, including a flower production garden, where you'll learn more about the “Silltero” tradition*Biblioteca España is closed for an indefinite period of time, due to construction
Overnight: Medellin
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

DAY 8, Friday - Magical Cartagena on the Sea
A flight takes you to Cartagena (Cartagena de Indias), a magical city nestled on the Caribbean Sea with magnificent architecture, massive fortifications and fabulous sea breezes. Listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, it is considered one of the continent's cultural treasures with its remarkably intact historic walled city. Upon arrival, time permitting, meet children at a local school before continuing to your hotel. The afternoon is yours to start your exploration of Cartagena either in the Old City with its maze of cobbled alleys, or at one of the volcanic beaches. Restaurants and open-air cafes abound on the lively coastline with superb cuisine and fish fresh from the sea
Overnight: Cartagena
Meals: Breakfast

DAY 9, Saturday - Cartagena City Tour
This morning, see expansive views of the city, sea and the port zone as you make your way to the San Felipe castle-fortress built on San Lazaro Hill, the largest in South America, to defend the city from pirate attacks. At the walled city, walk through the multicolored houses and buildings of the Old City of Cartagena. Visit San Pedro Claver Sanctuary and Church built in the mid-17th century. Proceed to the city's colonial district beginning at Bolivar Park shaded by large trees and a statue of the great Liberator in the middle. Surrounding the square is the Gold Museum, which exhibits its fine collection of archaeological objects dating back to the pre-Colombian period. The visit continues to Santo Domingo church, the Cathedral and ends at the Terraces. Pass by the house of the famous Nobel Prize Laureate novelist, Gabriel Garcia Marquez. Then, on to ‘the Vaults', archways built within the walled city that were used to store armaments and later as a prison. Today, this entire area is a thriving artisans' center with beautiful local handicrafts. The afternoon is at leisure to discover this charming city on your own or, participate in the optional Emerald Jewelry Workshop. Learn the art of jewelry making from trained craftsmen at FEJOCAR, a private non-profit jewelry school. Using .925 sterling silver and raw emeralds you will create jewelry. Upon completion of the class, you will receive a diploma and one piece of jewelry that you designed
Optional: Emerald Jewelry Workshop (PM)
Overnight: Cartagena
Meals: Breakfast

DAY 10, Sunday - Full Day in Cartagena
Spend a full day at leisure in Cartagena to further explore the city on your own or, join the optional half day La Boquilla Mangrove. Embark on a tour of the mangroves of La Boquilla, a fishing village located twenty minutes north of Cartagena. Glide through the dense growth of mangroves, on an original wooden canoe and view up-close this rich and diverse ecosystem. In the afternoon perhaps, participate in the optional half day Bird-watching at the Colombian National Aviary. Visit the second biggest aviary in Latin America, and sixth in the world, that houses more than 1,750 birds, representing 135 species. During the tour, enjoy a refreshing drink or ice cream before returning to Cartagena. Tonight, a festive Farewell Dinner with your fellow travelers marks the end of a truly wonderful adventure in Colombia
Optional: Half Day La Boquilla Mangrove (AM)
Optional: Half Day Bird-watching at the Colombian National Aviary (PM)
Overnight: Cartagena
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner

DAY 11, Monday - Depart Colombia
Transfer to the airport for your departure flight
Meals: Breakfast

Due to the high elevation, travel in the Colombian highlands may cause some passengers to experience the temporary effects of altitude sickness. If you have any concerns about traveling to higher than your accustomed elevation, please consult your healthcare provider.

Please Note: Land Price does not include airfare, departure or arrival transfers, airline taxes and fuel surcharges.

OR Call Us For a Free Quote 1-800-935-2620

Inclusions

Please Note: Land Price does not include airfare, departure or arrival transfers, airline taxes and fuel surcharges.

Escorted Package Includes

  • Flights Miami-Bogota, Cartagena-Miami
    Some departure dates may be offered from an alternate nearby airport. Check flight itinerary options when booking.
    Other departure cities available.
  • Airline taxes & fuel surcharges
  • All intra-flights: Bogota-Pereira & Medellin-Cartagena
  • 10 nights accommodations
  • 3 nights Bogota
  • 2 nights Manizales
  • 2 nights Medellin
  • 3 nights Cartagena
  • Hotel taxes, fees & service charges
  • Hotel porterage
  • All transfers included only with airfare purchase on package arrival & departure dates†
  • 17 meals: 10 breakfasts, 3 lunches, 4 dinners
  • Sightseeing per itinerary in modern air-conditioned motor coach
  • Services of an English-speaking tour manager throughout
  • Services of English-speaking local guides
  • Entrance fees per itinerary
  • Special Features

  • Visit La Candelaria District renowned for its perfectly preserved Colonial architecture
  • Stand before the impressive collection of pre-Hispanic Indian gold pieces at the Gold Museum
  • View the paintings and sculptures of Fernando Botero, the famed Colombian artist
  • Visit the amazing Salt Cathedral of Zipaquira built within the tunnels of a salt mine
  • Tour a working coffee plantation in Manizales, center of Colombia's Zona Cafetera
  • Walk on an ecological path through the world’s tallest wax-palms at the Los Nevados National Park
  • Discover Medellin in the beautiful Aburra Valley, named the "City of Eternal Spring"
  • Visit Santa Elena birthplace of the ornate flower arrangements called "Silletas"
  • Stay in magical Cartagena, named a UNESCO World Heritage Site - a true cultural treasure!
  • Tour Cartagena's Colonial District, view Bolivar Park, Santo Domingo Church and the Gold Museum
  • †Transfers are available for purchase for land only or on alternative flight dates

    *Not Included:
    Optional tours and gratuities.


    Additional Information:
    Land only price does not include arrival/departure transfers, but does include flights Bogota-Pereira & Medellin-Cartagena.

    The route and program may vary according to weather conditions, seasonal changes, and local events.


    Accommodation Details:
    Triple Rooms at the Hyatt Regency Cartagena will be accommodated in a Single Room & a Twin Room

    OR Call Us For a Free Quote 1-800-935-2620

    Accommodations

    Hotel El Dorado
    This first class hotel is a five minute walk from Parque 93.

    Hotel Estelar El Cable
    This superior tourist class hotel is located in a residential area close to the Torre Del Cable.

    Hotel Estelar Recinto Del Pensamiento
    This tourist class hotel is a 25 minute drive away from the city center of Manizales.

    Hotel Estelar Recinto Del Pensamiento
    This tourist class hotel is a 25 minute drive away from the city center of Manizales.

    Hotel Poblado Plaza
    This superior tourist class hotel is situated in the Poblado neighborhood of Medellin.

    Hyatt Regency Cartagena
    This superior first class hotel overlooks the Caribbean Sea.

    OR Call Us For a Free Quote 1-800-935-2620

    Questions & Answers

    Question: How many suitcases can I take with me on my trip?

    Each person is allowed one "check-in," and one "carry-on." Remember to take all valuables with you as "carry-on", because electronic equipment, cameras, laptops, jewelry, business documents and money are not covered by the airlines' liability, so always carry them aboard with you.

    Question: Is Airfare Included in the Price?

    Airfare from your point of origin to and from the trip is not included in the land price.

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    By Patricia F on Oct 09, 2019

    This is the first group tour we have taken but will not be our last. Our Affordable Tours agent John was just great. The tour manager Giuliana and all of the local guides were amazing. This trip far exceeded our expectations. The hotels and transportation were top notch. After talking with people from other competing tour companies this far exceeded theirs. We couldn't be happier and are looking forward to our next tour with Gate1 through Affordable Tours.

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    This is my sixth trip with Gate 1 and I am never disappointed. The good thing is your only requirement is to be ready to go when instructed. All the planning is done for you.

    By Nancy C on Sep 26, 2019

    Everything went very smoothly. Food was excellent and the lodging ranged from good to outstanding.

    By Anthony P on Sep 21, 2019

    This was a great trip, everything went as planned and was truly enjoyable. Our tour guide Michela was exceptional and a great friend. She goes above and beyond her duties. 

    By Virginia M on Sep 18, 2019

    Gate 1 consistently provides quality tour guides and hotels in prime locations. The service they provide throughout the tour makes for a trouble free traveling experience (e.g. airport transfers and baggage handling service)

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    By Deborah T on Sep 12, 2019

    The trip was wonderful and the price was great.Our tour guide Vera was fantastic. She was so devoted to the group and helpful with suggestions, etc. and going above and beyond with buying us little gifts, etc. The hotels were in great locations with wonderful breakfasts and each city's tour guide was knowledgeable and helpful.

    By Kikkeri S on Sep 10, 2019

    Overall our trip was enjoyable and services were excellent.

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    Great trip,and a excellent tour guide. Highly recommend

    By Josephine A on Sep 08, 2019

    We had a great time, First time with Gate 1 Tour, very impressed with the organized trip , food is superb , nice hotel and excellent tour director.

    By Regina G on Sep 08, 2019

    Our trip was wonderful and we feel that Gate 1 is the best way to take a vacation. We have another trip planned with Gate 1 in December 2019!

    By Mary Anne P on Sep 08, 2019

    Gate 1 provided a Tour Manager that went above and beyond my expectations. This was a great trip! We have booked with them before with Affordable Tours and also it was great.

    By Mary Jo B on Sep 08, 2019

    Best guide. Wonderful thanks


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