Colombia – Blooming

Colombia is back! After decades of intense conflict involving drug cartels, armed insurgents and gross human rights violations, Colombia and the Colombian people are now collectively celebrating their history, culture, natural surroundings and vibrant urban-life with great energy.

And the overt friendliness of the Colombian people tops it all.

Having just returned from an extended trip through the country’s most exciting inland and coastal regions, I believe that few other nations today can hold a candle to the speed by which travel & tourism is unfolding in Colombia.

The voting in of the country’s first left-wing president Gustavo Petro in 2022 (ex-rebel fighter and former mayor of Bogota), epitomizes the feeling of change. Local and international tourists celebrate with renewed energy the enormous diversity of this extraordinary country. From the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta Mountain Range and Tayrona National Park on the Caribbean coast, through the inland coffee regions, the mysterious Amazon, Andes and the swathes of vibrant metropolises, Colombia is truly enthralling.

As my montage of photos show, the natural beauty of the inland mountain, jungle and coffee regions act as a magical backdrop to the electric vibe of the streets in Bogota, Medellin and Cartagena. Across the land the people’s energy and sense of release is as infectious as the welcome they offer to visitors from near and far.

Even if you don’t speak Spanish, you will be swept up in the everyday feeling of bonhomie. Furthermore, you wear what you want, with tropical butt-stretching-lycra as popular as the national football shirt or digital-influencer botox.

Street-art has revolutionised urban areas which have until recently been derelict. Previously no-go zones now embrace visitors with renewed vigour. For example, the ‘peace & reconciliation’ movement in Bogota is evident across the old city region. In addition, the Medellin (City of Eternal Spring) tour of Comuna 13, and Getsemani street art scene in Cartagenia, offer an exciting array of contemporary alternatives.

All three cities also have an exciting bar, restaurant and cafe culture, and a nightlife to satisfy the hardest of partygoers.

All this energy and activity is further enhanced by the post-COVID swelling of digital nomad populations. International visitors are fast realising that Colombia is not only safe, but fun, welcoming, and very good value.

As the second most biologically diverse country on earth, Colombia is home to 10% (51,333) of the world’s animal species, with 528 types of mammals, 1,920 bird and 1,521 fish species. The birdlife feels omnipresent with hummingbirds, parrots, condors, great kiskadees and all manner of birds of prey. Larger animal species including monkeys, capybaras, sloths, deer and anteaters, along with the lesser-spotter pumas and jaguars.

So whether you want to hike, eat, party, chill, go urban or soak up mother nature… modern-day Colombia is ready and waiting. With open arms.

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