Apr 12, 2011|
The lush and fertile coffee-crop region of Colombia draws over 32,000 tourists a year, and Colombia’s tourism department is looking to increase that number. The “Coffee Triangle,” located in the Andes mountains of Colombia halfway between Bogota and the Pacific, is home to several coffee haciendas — sprawling plantations where coffee is planted, harvested and prepared for exports across the globe. On a 5 day Colombia Coffee tour, you can experience the pleasant sights, tastes, and aromas that the coffee region of Colombia has to offer. Starting your Colombia tour in the capital of Bogota, take a short flight due west to the Coffee Triangle. Stay in Armenia, Pereira, or Manizales, each renowned for its quaint towns and large swaths of green plantations. Bed down in a coffee hacienda with full board, and settled into the relaxing, slow pace of farm life. Many of these haciendas have been run by the same families for centuries, and are steeped in colonial history as well as a deep appreciation for the coffee-making process. On your first morning of your Colombia Coffee Region Tour, wake early and enjoy a cup or two of delicious joe, and then head out for a tour of the farm. You’ll learn about the technical process of coffee cultivation and production. In the afternoon, you’ll take a tour of the picturesque villages of Circasia, Salento and Filandia. Backed by the snow-covered volcanoes of the Parque Natural de los Nevados, this region is one of Colombia’s most well-traveled. Circasia is famous for its “Free Cemetery,” the first in Latin America to bury people regardless of their creed or religious affiliation. In Salento, you’ll see the impressive “Palma de Cera,” or Wax Palm, the Colombian national tree, and one of the tallest varieties of palm in the world. In the evening, return to your hacienda for another relaxing night. If you have time, you may want to hit up some nearby hot springs and indulge in a mud bath or just relaxing in the soothing and cleansing mineral waters. The next day, take a full-day excursion through Barcelona, Pijao, Buenavista, and Génova, coffee-growing villages that are tucked away amongst verdant foothills and valleys. Later, visit the Guadua and Bamboo Experimental Centre, which was built in 1986 to promote bamboo crafts and architecture. Not only is bamboo a fully sustainable resource, but it is well-suited against earthquakes. In the late afternoon, you can relax at your hacienda or go on a hike or tour nearby. There are plenty of excellent birdwatching opportunities in the Colombia coffee region – don’t be surprised to catch sight of a Yellow-eared parrot squawking away in the cloud forests! On the following day, enjoy a full-day tour of the rest of the coffee-growing region, stopping at Calarcá’s botanical gardens, La Tebaida, Montenegro, and the Parque del Café. Next, tour through Quimbaya, the third-largest town in the Quindío department. In the afternoon, return to your coffee hacienda and enjoy the rest of the day at your leisure. If you are feeling up to the adventure, consider a white water rafting tour in Calarcá or Montenegro, or go on a zip lining adventure through the canopy treetops. There’s something for everyone in the Colombia Coffee Triangle. Wake early on your final day in Colombia’s coffee region, and enjoy a cup of coffee, knowing exactly what tastes and aromas signify an excellent cup of caffeine. Return to the airport for your flight back to Bogotá or the next destination on your Colombia tour.