Declared a UNESCO World Heritage site in 2011, the Coffee Triangle is one of the unmissable highlights of Colombia. Rich in coffee culture, striking landscapes and caffeine- fuelled adventures, it offers a wealth of fascinating things to see and do and provides a real insight into authentic Colombia.
As the third largest coffee exporter in the world, Colombia is famous for its quality of coffee. It is a way of life in the Coffee Triangle and engrained in the local culture. As the core coffee-producing region of the country, the history, the process and harvest of the coffee bean is carried out entirely by hand, which locals believe to be the key success in creating what is undoubtedly some of the world’s finest coffee.
The triangle itself comprises of three distinct areas: Risaralda, Quindo and Caldas with their corresponding capital cities of Pereira, Armenia and Manizales. As the commercial hub, Pereira is the gateway to the coffee triangle and its city surroundings are blessed with traditional working coffee farms, which have opened up their doors to guests. Exploring the various plantations on a coffee tour is the perfect way to immerse yourself in the culture that surrounds it, while here you can have a go at hand-picking these Arabica beans and learn all about the processes involved. Located in the heart of the coffee-triangle is the city of Armenia, the birth place of coffee-tourism and an area packed with charming coffee farms, majestic vistas and quaint towns. The small towns of Salento and Filandia are particular highlights and both revered for their beautiful architecture and charm.
Further north you’ll find the city of Manizales, the gateway to the ‘Los Nevados’ National Park, a nature lover’s paradise brimming with snow-capped mountain peaks, fiery volcanoes, steamy cloud forest and winding rivers. It is an adventure wonderland, which offers an array of activities, including hiking, mountain biking and rock-climbing to name a few. With so many ecosystems it is a biodiversity hot-spot and is home to a wealth of flora and flora, including over 300 species of birds, vibrantly coloured orchids and a host of primate species. Extending from ‘Los Nevados’ National Park, is the enchanting Valle de Cocora, a dense green valley brimming with misty hills and peppered with Colombia’s national tree- the Quindian wax-palm, the world’s tallest wax palm, which towers over 60 feet high. From horse-back riding to challenging day-hikes and leisurely strolls, exploring these nature reserves open your eyes to the beauty of this region.
No trip to Colombia would be complete without a visit to this majestic area of the world, and with direct links to Bogota and only a short drive from Medellin, it is easy to access and hosts some of the most charming haciendas in the country.
Please read our blog to find out about our top five things to do in Colombia.