Colombia: South America’s best-kept secret
Travel to Colombia where there is land of incredible beauty, excitement, charm and diversity waiting to be discovered. The country borders the Caribbean Sea and the Pacific Ocean and is located on the North-Western corner of South America. Its territory is the fourth largest in the continent with an area of 1.141.748 km2 (709,450 mi2) rich in diversity from its people, cultures, regions and flora and fauna.
Colombia is distributed into five main natural regions that present its own unique characteristics. These regions are exemplified by its palm-fringed beaches lapping up the warm Caribbean Sea, its fertile green highlands of the Andes region where the famous smooth aromatic coffee is harvested under the rolling foothills of the mountains. Go west to the rugged yet tranquil coastline of the Pacific Ocean or South East to glide on vast and silent rivers of the lush and tropical rainforest of Amazonia.
With all this to offer and the assurance that Colombia is safer than ever, with the civil conflict all but eradicated, and blissfully un-crowded, it is a dream for discerning travellers who yearn to discover one of South America’s best kept secrets. Let us highlight the magnificence of a country waiting to be explored. From the vibrant and cosmopolitan cities of Bogotá and Medellin; the wonder and beauty of colonial Cartagena on the coast of the Caribbean, a UNESCO World Heritage site; to the hotbed of Colombian salsa in Cali, this is only just a flavour and experience that this captivating country and its friendly and proud people have to offer.
Colombia is the only country in the region with coasts on both the Caribbean and Pacific Ocean, with a continental area of 1.141.748 km2 (440 829 square miles) and 928.660 km2 (358 555 square miles) of maritime dominions.
Colombia is located in the northwestern region of South America bordering to the east with Venezuela and Brazil; to the south with Ecuador and Peru; to the North with the Atlantic Ocean, through the Caribbean Sea; and to the west with Panama and the Pacific Ocean. This amazing country is the 26th largest nation in the world and the fourth largest country in South America after Brazil, Argentina, and Peru.
It is estimated that Colombia has 45.446.247 people; 60% Mestizo, 20% of European descent, 5% Afro-Colombian, 14% mixed African and Indian blood and 1% pure Indian.
Created by General Francisco de Miranda in March 12 from 1806 at La Vela harbor, and was officially adopted on November 26 from 1861.
The primary colors are yellow, blue and red. Yellow stands for our country's richness. Blue, for our coasts on the Atlantic and Pacific oceans and red evokes the blood of our Independence heroes.
The cattleya trianae orchid, also known as "May flower" or "May lily", is Colombia's national flower since 1936.
Bogotá D.C., Cali, Medellin, Cartagena and Barranquilla.
Spanish is the main language and the currency is "el peso". One peso equals 100 centavos.
The topography characteristics from Colombia are the mountainous chain of the Andes, which crosses most of the country from the central and west part in north and south direction. The Andes is divided in three chains that move parallel. To the East of the Oriental mountain chain are extensive tropical chains. At the South of the country abound the Virgin jungles, where moves the Caquetá river ending at the Amazon river.
In spite of the fact that most part of the Colombian territory is located in the "Torrid Zone", the climate changes in agreement to the altitude. The plains of the coast and the deep valleys of the Magdalena river have in all the year high temperatures with an average between 24ºC and 27ºC. Above the 3000 m begin the climatic moderate and cold zones, with a temperature between 18ºC and 13ºC. The season of rain and the dry season are alternated every three months, being the very rainy coast, the Pacific Region.
On the coast of the Caribbean Sea grow Swamps and coconut palms. In the sylvan regions, we can find a diversity of trees such as Mahogany, guayacán, oak, walnut, cedar, pine and different types of Balsam trees. In the Colombian animal world we can find the biggest mammals from Southamerica such as jaguars, Pumas, tapirs, pecaríes, lazy bears, zarigüeyas, as well as different species of monkeys and deer.
In the Tropical regions we can find different types of serpents. Between the local birds we can find the condor, the vulture, the toucan, the parrot, the cockatoo, the crane, the stork, and the colibrí.
Colombian coffee zones are located in the departments of Antioquia, Boyacá, Caldas, Cauca, Cesar, Caquetá, Casanare, Cundinamarca, Guajira, Huila, Magdalena, Meta, Nariño, Norte de Santander, Quindío, Risaralda, Santander, Tolima, and Valle del Cauca. These regions possess optimal climate and atmospheric conditions for the growth of coffee.
The most amazing places in Colombia considered natural heritage are; Maloka; Bogotá, Gold Museum; Bogotá, La Casa Natal del General Francisco de Paula Santander Museum, Natural Colombia Museum; Bogotá and Natural science Museum.
These are considered by the world heritage Committee UNESCO. Cartagena de Indias (1984), Parque Nacional de los Katíos, Antioquia-Chocó (1994), los parques arqueológicos de San Agustín; Huila, Tierradentro; Cauca, y el Centro Histórico de Santa Cruz de Mompox; Bolívar (1995).
In cooler areas like Bogotá, wear a light woolen suit or dress.Pullovers are recommended for evenings. In the warm zone, light and casual. A rain coat is always useful.
Colombia has five important regions. This regions are; The Pacific region, the Andina region, Orinoquía region, Amazon region and Caribbean region and Insular region (this regions contains all the Colombian islands).
Commerce, Agriculture (consumes about the 63% of the sweet water in Colombia), Mining industry, the Coffee and the Ranching.
Most of the Hotels we can find are 4* and 5*.
Our amazing airport is called "Aeropuerto El Dorado". At this moment it's having a big transformation.
The cumbia is the traditional Colombian musical genre. Cumbia combines their contributions. It is performed in groups by couples who dance in a circle to the beat of the drums and gaita music and hold a lit candle in their hands.
In this moment, vallenato and national pop music are the stars of the world's musical scene. Colombian music is an always-reinventing melting pot of tendencies and rhythms.
Colombia has 55 Natural Parks where we can find an amazing variety fauna and flora, and a variety of gorgeous landscapes. Some of the most important parks are; Amacayacú, Chingaza, Cocuy, San Bernardo, Gorgona, Los Nevados del Ruiz, Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta, Tayrona, Ciénaga Grande de Santa Marta and El Nevado del Huila.
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