See Colombia’s exciting capital Bogotá from the bike saddle, get an adrenaline rush with rafting on the Suarez River at San Gil, challenge yourself with a hike to the lost city and end with relaxation on the beautiful Caribbean coast. Learn more about Colombia on themotorcyclers.
Fasten your backpack, Colombia is waiting! This beautiful country has a lot to offer and this trip gives you a small taste of everything.
You can experience the vibrant city of Bogotá from the bicycle saddle and cycle around the historic area of La Candelaria with beautiful buildings and churches from the colonial era.
From Bogotá, the journey continues by local bus to San Gil, which offers all kinds of adventure activities. After San Gil, the Caribbean coast and a hike to the legendary lost city await. For two days in the coastal city of Taganga, you can do whatever you want before the challenging four-day hike through the lush Colombian rainforest begins. You walk on small paths, cross rivers and end the hike by climbing 1,200 steep steps to the entrance to the lost city, Ciudad Perdida.
Enjoy the community of surfers and backpackers in Palomino for a few days after the hike to the lost city. The trip ends in the beautiful port city of Cartagena with its unique atmosphere and colorful buildings from the colonial era.
Day 1: Departure from Sweden and arrival in Bogotá
You travel from Sweden and arrive in the capital Bogotá in the afternoon (local time). You will be picked up at the airport and driven to your hostel.
Day 2: City tour of Bogotá by bike
On this day you will see Bogotá from the bicycle saddle. You go on an exciting tour past beautiful churches, places and buildings in the old town of La Candelaria. You visit some of the most beautiful parks in the city and can see the old bullring where brave bullfighters fought against raging bulls in the old days. You also have time to taste freshly squeezed fruit juice at one of the city’s many fruit markets. Bike rides are a nice way to see the city and at the same time you avoid the big traffic jams that are so common in big cities.
Day 3: Bogotá to San Gil
You will be picked up at your hostel and driven to the bus station where you will take a local bus to San Gil. The city is located about 300 km north of Bogotá and the journey takes approx. 8 hours. You will arrive in San Gil in the afternoon and during the rest of the day you can explore the city on your own.
Day 4-5: White water rafting in San Gil
San Gil is known as the adventure capital of Colombia and there are activities for everyone who loves a good adrenaline rush. In the coming days you can explore the city on your own. You can choose to go hiking, rafting, mountain biking, canoeing and paragliding. There are many different options to choose from.
Day 6: San Gil to Santa Marta
In the evening, take the night bus to Santa Marta on the Caribbean coast. The bus journey takes approx. 12-13 hours so just sit back, watch a movie and / or sleep in the soft chairs that can be reclined so that they almost lie down. There is a toilet on the bus. On the way you stop once or twice and then you can buy some snacks. But still remember to bring your own food for the trip.
Day 7-8: On a voyage of discovery in Santa Marta
In the morning you will arrive at the bus station in Santa Marta, where you can explore the city on your own for two days. Outside Santa Marta you will find the small town of MincA which is known for its coffee production and pleasant climate. The city is located at an altitude of about 600 meters in the Sierra Nevada mountains. Another day trip goes to Colombia’s most visited national park, Tayrona. The park offers beautiful and varied nature with lush rainforests, beautiful beaches and exciting flora and fauna. You can make day trips or choose to stay there if you choose to extend your trip.
Day 9: Hike to Ciudad Perdida
See one of Colombia’s hidden treasures: The lost city, Ciudad Perdida! Deep in the mountains of the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta are the ruins of one of the largest settlements in Colombia’s prehistory. It is believed that the area has been inhabited since the seventh century, but the ruins that are there now are from the eleventh to the fourteenth century. Here lived the so-called Tayrona people. When the Spaniards came to the country in 1499, they fought the Tayrona people and the city was destroyed when the people were expelled. It was not until the early 1970s that grave robbers found their way to the hidden city and it did not take long before the rumor spread and there was a struggle for taxes. In 1976, the government sent in forces and took over the area. The purpose was that real archaeologists could dig out the area and find the last treasures that were then sent to the country’s museums. You are picked up at the hostel and driven with a four-wheel drive car along winding and bumpy roads to the small town of Mamey. The journey there takes about three hours. After lunch, we enter the jungle in a united troop in the best Indiana Jones style. Rivers must be crossed and steep passages must be climbed, so you must be prepared to get dirty and that hiking is a real challenge. But in the end, a fantastic reward awaits. The first day we walk for three to four hours and reach an altitude of about 520 meters. Along the way, some breaks are also taken so that you can get extra energy for the challenging hike along the Tayrona people’s old paths. When you arrive at the camp, you can relax before a well-deserved candle is served. The camps used are relatively primitive and have shared toilets. There is room for approx. 50 people, so several hiking groups meet here overnight. At night you sleep in bunk beds or in hammocks with mosquito nets. At night the temperature drops to around 18–22 degrees. Hiking time: approx. 3-4 hours
Day 10: Hike to Ciudad Perdida
This day is the most demanding of the trip and you cross the Buritaca River nine times during the day’s hike. Along the way you walk past many small local communities. The lost city of Ciudad Perdida is very sacred to the locals, so it is important that you remember to respect their history, customs and traditions. Always ask before you take pictures and remember to take all the rubbish out of the jungle again. A good lunch is enjoyed along the way and during the breaks fruit is also served, but it can still be a good idea to bring some extra chocolate cakes and other energy-rich snacks. It is a fantastic experience to sleep in the jungle and completely magical to lie and listen to all the animals and insects that come to life at night. It is not difficult to fall asleep in the evening after the day’s hard hike. Hiking time: approx. 8 hours
Day 11: Hike to Ciudad Perdida
Today’s hike starts early in the morning and you climb up 660 meters. The last part of the tour takes place up 1,200 steep steps to the entrance to the lost city. You are rewarded for your efforts when you stand on top of the city and can look out over the dense jungle and the hilly terrain. It is a magical place and for three to four hours you can explore the ruins and learn more about the place’s exciting history. After lunch you start climbing down the same way you came up, through the jungle towards the camp where you spent the night. Hiking time: approx. 7-8 hours
Day 12: From Ciudad Perdida to Palomino
After breakfast we continue on foot out of the jungle towards the small town of Mamey. Here is a four-wheel drive car ready to drive us the last bit to the cozy little surf town of Palomino. You can spend the evening doing what you want, but surely you want to take a bath and get a good night’s sleep in a real bed after four days in the jungle? Hiking time: approx. 7-8 hours
Day 13: Relaxation in Palomino
This day you can do exactly what you want. For example, you can choose to surf or just enjoy a day at the beach. One thing is for sure and that is that the relaxed atmosphere of the city is contagious and that you will be able to relax without any problems.
Day 14: From Palomino to Cartagena
This day the trip goes to Cartagena. You will be picked up at your hostel by a shuttle bus with room for 15-20 people that will take you to Cartagena. The bus journey takes about five to six hours and on the way you stop at different hotels. Cartagena is another big highlight of the trip in Colombia. The city was founded in 1533 and is named after Cartagena in Spain. Cartagena played an important role both politically and economically during the colonial era when the Spaniards expanded their empire in Colombia. To protect the city from pirates, a large fort and a 13 km long city wall were built, which in 1984 became a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Take a walk in the city’s old quarters which have cobbled streets, beautiful colonial buildings and churches take you back to another time.
Day 15: On a voyage of discovery in Cartagena
During the day you can explore the city on your own. If you want to see a beautiful Caribbean beaches, you can go on an excursion to Islas del Rosario, which is a national park consisting of a total of 27 islands. In the park you can see characteristic white sandy beaches that are so often associated with the Caribbean. This is also a great opportunity to snorkel and dive.
Day 16: Departure from Cartagena
On this day, it’s time to say goodbye to Colombia. You will be picked up at your hostel and driven to the airport from where you will fly back to Scandinavia.
Day 17: Arrival in Scandinavia
When you return to Scandinavia depends on which company you fly with.
Eleven nights at a hostel
Three nights at a camp
One night on a local bus from San Gil to Santa Marta