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Old 12-18-2015, 09:35 PM
 
218 posts, read 315,488 times
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Hi I'm planning a family trip for a quick 4 day weekend in February, and I've decided on Colombia. While I have been to Medellin before (and loved it), which of the top options are the best if you only have time to visit one?


Note: I chose these three as they are the only direct flights from where I live that I can redeem my reward points to book free flights. And it'll only be a two hour and fourty-five minute flight, thereby lessening my travel time and allowing me to maximize time while I am there.


I'd love to here your thoughts and your reasons why!
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Old 12-18-2015, 09:47 PM
 
Location: Tucson, AZ
2,161 posts, read 7,484,341 times
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An excellent choice in February: Barranquilla!

Carnaval de Barranquilla

Carnaval in Barranquilla is not as famous as the one in Rio de Janiero, but it is a great event. February 6 to 9, 2016. You will not regret it - hopefully you can find a place to stay if you try to reserve now.

Barranquilla is also close to the historic port city of Cartagena so you can visit both places. Have fun!
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Old 12-18-2015, 09:47 PM
 
Location: Los Angeles
2,422 posts, read 1,326,154 times
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Not much to do in Barranquilla but you could take a 90 minute van/car ride to Cartagena. Lots to do in Cartagena for 3 or 4 days.

I love Cali. Spent a week there but I was there as a single guy. Can't really comment much on family activities there.
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Old 12-18-2015, 09:49 PM
 
Location: Los Angeles
2,422 posts, read 1,326,154 times
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Forgot about the Carnaval in Barranquilla. That will make it crowded and hotel rooms harder to come by. Again. Cartagena is not too difficult to get to by ground from Barranquilla.
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Old 12-19-2015, 05:45 AM
 
Location: London, UK
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The great thing about Cali is that you're only a 3 hour bus ride away from Armenia in the coffee region. Perhaps the most family friendly region in all of Colombia. A bus ticket to Armenia is only $7 dollars per person on Expreso Palmira, the better bus company on that route.

You have the colonial towns/villages of Buenavista, Filandia and Salento the latter the most popular with the spectacular Cocora valley. Wonderful coffee haciendas you can stay at where humming birds fly to your window. There's the butterfly park, 'mariposario', the farm animal theme park of 'Panaca', hot springs and waterfalls in Santa Rosa de Cabal nearer to the sister city of Pereira. Snow at the nevados national park where you can reach the top of the Ruiz volcano by car from the other sister city of Manizales - amazing scenery! The roads between Cali-Armenia-Pereira-Manizales are in pretty good shape as it all sits on the same range so less climbing over mountains to do. Armenia is about 45 mins from Pereira and Manizales is about 1 hour from Pereira. All cities are safe, Pereira being the bigger slightly dodgier one but still manageable. Safer than Cali that's for sure, but even Cali has become quite manageable with a significant drop in crime in the past 2 years.

In Cali you can probably take a trip to the zoo, a walk along the 'Avenida Colombia' Bulevard and a trip to the river Pance where you can bathe. Usually gets packed on the weekends with families. However, seeing as you only have 4 days for the family I would give Cali half a day max, perhaps on your return and head straight for Armenia with stay in Salento.

Barranquilla doesn't have anything touristy really, it's an industrial city and not pedestrian friendly however you're 2 hours away from Cartagena (west) and Santa Marta (east) if you're looking for more of a coastal destination. I still think the coffee region wins out though for sure, especially with the family.

Last edited by Pueblofuerte; 12-19-2015 at 06:05 AM..
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Old 12-19-2015, 09:41 AM
 
218 posts, read 315,488 times
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Let me clarify, by family trip I mean I'll be bringing my mom who is in her 60's and probably wont be able to do to much extended walking.

Quote:
Originally Posted by recycled View Post
An excellent choice in February: Barranquilla!

Carnaval de Barranquilla

Carnaval in Barranquilla is not as famous as the one in Rio de Janiero, but it is a great event. February 6 to 9, 2016. You will not regret it - hopefully you can find a place to stay if you try to reserve now.

Barranquilla is also close to the historic port city of Cartagena so you can visit both places. Have fun!
I'll be travelling over Presidents Day weekend 2/12 - 2/15 so I'll have just missed that.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Astral_Weeks View Post
Not much to do in Barranquilla but you could take a 90 minute van/car ride to Cartagena. Lots to do in Cartagena for 3 or 4 days.

I love Cali. Spent a week there but I was there as a single guy. Can't really comment much on family activities there.
I'll just be bringing my mom so there wont be any children. Do you still think this would be a good choice

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pueblofuerte View Post
The great thing about Cali is that you're only a 3 hour bus ride away from Armenia in the coffee region. Perhaps the most family friendly region in all of Colombia. A bus ticket to Armenia is only $7 dollars per person on Expreso Palmira, the better bus company on that route.

You have the colonial towns/villages of Buenavista, Filandia and Salento the latter the most popular with the spectacular Cocora valley. Wonderful coffee haciendas you can stay at where humming birds fly to your window. There's the butterfly park, 'mariposario', the farm animal theme park of 'Panaca', hot springs and waterfalls in Santa Rosa de Cabal nearer to the sister city of Pereira. Snow at the nevados national park where you can reach the top of the Ruiz volcano by car from the other sister city of Manizales - amazing scenery! The roads between Cali-Armenia-Pereira-Manizales are in pretty good shape as it all sits on the same range so less climbing over mountains to do. Armenia is about 45 mins from Pereira and Manizales is about 1 hour from Pereira. All cities are safe, Pereira being the bigger slightly dodgier one but still manageable. Safer than Cali that's for sure, but even Cali has become quite manageable with a significant drop in crime in the past 2 years.

In Cali you can probably take a trip to the zoo, a walk along the 'Avenida Colombia' Bulevard and a trip to the river Pance where you can bathe. Usually gets packed on the weekends with families. However, seeing as you only have 4 days for the family I would give Cali half a day max, perhaps on your return and head straight for Armenia with stay in Salento.

Barranquilla doesn't have anything touristy really, it's an industrial city and not pedestrian friendly however you're 2 hours away from Cartagena (west) and Santa Marta (east) if you're looking for more of a coastal destination. I still think the coffee region wins out though for sure, especially with the family.
Thats a lot of hopping around. As I mentioned above, I'll be travelling with my mom who is in her 60's. So Im not trying to make this a multi city hop like an early 20's back packer. Which is the best city to spend a few days?
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Old 12-19-2015, 10:34 AM
 
Location: London, UK
2,408 posts, read 1,245,050 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CityScape0322 View Post
Thats a lot of hopping around. As I mentioned above, I'll be travelling with my mom who is in her 60's. So Im not trying to make this a multi city hop like an early 20's back packer. Which is the best city to spend a few days?
I just mentioned a list of things that were possible in the region doesn't mean you have to do every single one - I thought you were talking about kids so I mentioned the theme parks. Also if you decide to hire a car it's all manageable, I mean 1 hour is what it takes to get from one area of Manhattan to another - I don't consider this unachievable for people outside their 20's but again we're all different.

The coffee region is perfect for the silver traveller, full of nature, flowers, cute towns and great scenery which that demographic seems to like. You could just as easily stay in Salento and maybe do a day trip to the hot springs and that's it before going back to Cali for the flight. The 3 hour trip is little more than a minor inconvenience in my opinion.

The second option is Cartagena, 2 hours away from Barranquilla. Grab a Taxi from the airport to the marsol or Berlinas offices and grab a mini-van to Cartagena. Nothing to see in Barranquilla. The old city of cartagena within the walls is beautiful but very hot! Also you can grab a boat from the port to the Rosary islands or Playa Blanca, Baru as the city beaches aren't that great though take care of the waves the ride in the speed boats can be bumpy.

The areas that may interest you are in the following order in this video:

1. Cocora Valley (coffee region)
2. Cartagena
3. Rosario Islands & Baru
.
.
7. Coffee hacienda example
8. Salento (Coffee region)



The next video is full of OAP's in Colombia. 60's is the new 40's!!

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