Dec 9, 2015|
If you are a coffee lover, the Colombian Coffee Region is your dream destination. If you think you have tasted good coffee, you haven’t experienced anything until you try the coffee freshly picked and roasted in the coffee region! But you may be surprised at the wider appeal this region has to offer.
Arrive in the Coffee Region
When we touched down in the coffee region, I didn’t really know what to expect. Part of me expected to be transported to an enormous coffee plantation where everyone was dedicated to the coffee process. But the ride into the hotel from the Pereira looked strangely familiar – there were a number of shops, restaurants, and businesses just like any other city. But as soon as you arrive at the Finca (a large plot of land, this one contained an old home converted into a hotel), you feel immersed in the local culture. We felt at home even though we were thousands of miles away. The first day began with an amazing treat – the best coffee I’ve ever tasted. We went to an unassuming coffee shop in Salento called “Jesus Martin”. Not only was the coffee shockingly tasty, they gave us a short lesson on what they called “arte latte” the designs that you can find in lattes in certain coffee shops.
Hike in the Cocora Valley
After buying as much coffee as we could fit in our luggage, we continued on to an even better surprise! I thought the best part of the trip would be the coffee plantations themselves, but I was wrong. The highlight for us was the Cocora Valley, which is an amazing area near Salento. Here you can find some of the tallest palm trees in the world scattered across majestic rolling hills. The moderate hike provided us with some of our favorite photo opportunities, and great views of the verdant mountains and local wildlife.
The Coffee Making Process
The next day we were excited to gain some insight into the coffee process and we weren’t disappointed! We went to a great coffee plantation called Recuca that was very fun and interactive – perfect for someone who doesn’t know much about coffee production. We learned later that the best places for people who want a more in-depth look into coffee farming would be Hacienda San Alberto, Hacienda Don Manolo or Hacienda Guayabal. That evening, we capped off our time spent in the coffee region with a cooking lesson at the Sazagua Hotel. I cannot recommend this highly enough! The hotel is the best place to stay in the coffee region and the cooking lesson was incredibly fun and the food was delicious. We really felt as if we were partaking in the culture and they made us feel so welcome.
Say Goodbye to the Coffee Region
We left the coffee region with a bittersweet feeling. Sad we were leaving, but happy we had so much good coffee to bring home with us!