What Colombia Is Famous For
For decades –– thanks to the drug cartels, the guerrillas, and some questionable politicians –– Colombia was famous for its violence and danger. Still today, after more than ten year of being a country open to tourism, the first question travelers ask remains: Is Colombia really safe? Luckily, the situation has changed. There are now tens of reasons to visit the South American country. From the Caribbean paradise up north, to the wild Pacific shore, passing by the majestic Andean mountains, and the jungle of the Amazonas, visitors have so many options that one trip won’t be enough.
In order to make it easier for you to choose where to go on you next visit to Colombia, here are some tips on what is Colombia famous for today:
Colombia is the third largest producer of coffee in the world. Our coffee is famous for its mild flavor, the high to medium acidity, and the perfect aroma. The secret for such popular flavor is mostly the geography where our Arabica bean grows. Factors like the altitude of the growing zones, the soil, the climate and rain patterns, and some cultural practices, have given our product an original outcome for more than two centuries. If you want to see how coffee grows, and how it is processed to become the cup you drink in the morning, you should go to Colombia’s coffee belt in the Andean Region. In the coffee triangle, formed by Quindio, Caldas, and Risaralda, the visitor can tour the farms, taste the bean, stopover by the Coffee Park, and be astonished by the Cocora Valley, one of the most beautiful views in Colombia.
Around 80% of the emeralds that are sold in the global market come from Colombia. Collectors and connoisseurs from all over the world come to the country in search for the perfect stone. Colombian emeralds are known for their purity, which is reflect in the warm and intense green color they have. The range of prices could go from 40 to hundreds of thousands of dollars. If you visit Colombia to find the route of the emeralds, you could start with a tour in Chivor or Muzo, two miner towns in Boyacá (a couple of hours away from Bogota). If you want to shop some good quality stones, find a certified dealer.
Considered one of the five most biodiverse countries in the world, Colombia is home to the largest quantity of bird and orchids species, and the second largest of butterflies, and amphibians. One of the favorite plans for visitors coming to the country is the birdwatching tour. The best places for such plan are Minca, at the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta; El Valle, at Chocó (a Pacific Region department); the National Aviary in Cartagena; the 559 kilometers Yotoco National Reserve in Valle del Cauca (also Pacific Region); and the Acayacu National Park in Amazonas.
The largest collection in the world of pre-historic pieces made in gold is in the Gold Museum (Museo del Oro) of Bogota and its national network. Almost five thousand pieces of art craft that tell the story of a large range of indigenous cultures. Pieces that, still today, are one of the features Colombia is famous for.
- Natural parks and reserved areas
Because of its biodiversity is one of the things Colombia is famous for, the country has large protected territories. Sixty-eight in total between protected areas and national parks, which means more than 23 million hectares of deserts, coral reefs, rainforest, paramos, indigenous lands. Five of the most visited parks are the Tayrona National Park, near Santa Marta; Rosario and San Bernardo Islands in Cartagena; La Macarena National and Ecological Reserve Park in Meta (famous for Caño Cristales, the seven-color river); Amacayacu National Park in Amazonas; and Chiribiquete National Park, between Caquetá and Guaviare, where (according to some researchers) there are still uncontacted indigenous communities.