Coffee region, Colombia: Coffee Cultural Landscape!
The coffee axis is a region of central Colombia that mainly occupies the departments of Caldas, Risaralda, and Quindío, which are respectively represented by the capital cities of Manizales, Pereira, and Armenia. These three departments make up the "Coffee Triangle" that runs along a line from north to south following the central mountain range and the snow-capped peaks of the Nevados Natural Park, on the eastern flank of the three. Colombia is concentrated in the fertile valleys of this region, for what is called the "coffee zone". Traveling through these generous and prosperous valleys, one can observe endless coffee plantations and their colorful wooden houses with balconies of wood and flowers, which make it a very picturesque landscape.
The wealth of tourism in Colombia is patented in the Coffee Region, countless parks, botanical gardens, hot springs and even snowy parks are the attractions that cannot be missed. It is a territory with a special natural charm, with impressive green landscapes and with a model of agricultural exploitation that coexists and takes care of the environment, which has led it to be a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2011 as "Coffee Cultural Landscape".
Where to go in the Coffee Region of Colombia?
Parque Del Café: Theme Park with mechanical attractions, full of all the splendour of the Quindian landscape where you will find all the magic and history of the coffee culture and that seeks to promote the conservation of the coffee culture.
Valle Del Cocora: The Cocora Valley is the most important nature reserve in the department of Quindío. It is the entrance to the National Park of Los Nevados and the cradle of the Palm of Wax, Colombian patriotic symbol. Of spectacular beauty, it extends along the head of the Quindío River and is ideal for outdoor activities such as camping, hiking, hiking, horseback riding, natural baths and more.
Parque de los Nevados: Its extension covers part of the departments of Caldas, Risaralda, Quindío and Tolima. Among its main attractions are the volcanic system, the varied ecosystems, landscapes, lagoons and the perpetual snow of the different snowy peaks.
Parque de los Arrieros: Los Arrieros Park is a place that offers tourist services for recreation, amusement and learning; around the culture of the archery; through artistic, cultural and entertainment areas that make up a range of options for visitors to enjoy a pleasant experience in our facilities.
Termales de Santa Rosa: Located in a privileged place for recreation and relaxation, with a unique ecological environment. The Thermal Spa Santa Rosa de Cabal, offers its visitors waterfalls of cold water, pools of thermal water, ecological routes to better know our nature, source of beauty and natural peace.
Ecoparque los Yarumos: The Ecoparque los Yarumos is a place where you can spend an unforgettable day. Enjoying all its attractions such as 3 canopy lines, canyoning, Tibetan bridge, climbing wall, ecological trail, and more. It's also a place where you can also see 180 species of birds such as the carriqui, partridges and guans.
Alejandro Humboldt Botanical Garden in Marsella: The Botanical Garden was founded in 1979 by motivated environmental leaders who promoted the creation of a space dedicated to the conservation of flora and environmental education. In its route through six (6) stations, it has a total extension of 4.6 hectares in which there is a mixture of Nature, Science and Fun.
Top Things to do in Colombia’s Coffee Region
Coffee Farm Tour: Visit a traditional coffee farm and learn the whole coffee production process – from plant to a steaming cup of fresh coffee. Many coffee farms will facilitate coffee tastings and teach participants how to distinguish between flavors, notes, and origins. Check out our Coffee Farm Tour here!
Valle de Cocora Tour: Dotted with towering wax palm trees, Cocora Valley is located about 13km from a small town called Salento. The whole loop takes 5-6 hours to hike, but people can turn back if the trail gets too challenging. Some of the trail is accessible on horseback and is a truly stunning experience.
Visit Traditional Towns: The small colorful towns in the Coffee Region, such as Salento, Filandia and Salamina, are a treat for anyone who appreciates quaint, colorful pueblos bursting with tradition and culture. Visitors can stay overnight or visit various towns in one day. Be sure to see the main squares in each of the towns.
Trek Through Los Nevados National Park – Spanning across several departments, Los Nevados Park is a 582 square kilometer conservation center in the Coffee Region. It has glaciers, páramos, lakes, and forests. It is also home to several volcanoes, including the 5,300-metre-high Nevado del Ruiz. Note that it’s prohibited to climb Nevado del Ruiz because it is an active volcano.
Colombia’s Coffee Region
Salento: It is perhaps the most important municipality for tourism in Quindío because of the beautiful and preserved legacy architecture of the Antioquia colonization, the imposing Cocora Valley, and for a contagious atmosphere of peace and well-being that is impregnated immediately, it arrives.
Filandia: A place that offers a wide range of cultural and natural plans, you will also find an excellent gastronomic offer and you will be dazzled by its preserved architecture.
Los Nevados National Natural Park: The heart of Colombia's coffee region and the source of water for hundreds of residents. The rivers, which are born here, irrigate agricultural land and nourish the aqueducts of cities, towns and villages.
Colombia’s Coffee Region Travel Information
When to visit Colombia’s Coffee Region: In the coffee territory a great number of events are held throughout the year, which are characterized by publicizing the identity, folklore, music and dance that characterize it.
- Festivities of La Cosecha (Pereira): They take place in Pereira during August, a great month of fun, concerts, typical food ... and again, a lot, but a lot of parties in the squares, parks, main streets and other famous places.
- Fiestas del Progreso (Dosquebradas): You will find a lot of color in these dates, either for the upcoming Christmas holidays or for the preparation of the festivities. Waiting for you reigns, sports events, comparsas, artistic and gastronomic exhibitions and concerts with distinguished guests.
- Festival of the Araucarias (Santa Rosa de Cabal): There will be fireworks, contests of "jeepaos", colorful comparsas, dance competitions, plays, outdoor films, lots of music and partying and a great commitment to exhibit an Amazing variety of succulent dishes.
- Carnival of the Devil (Riosucio): it is every two years and the lovers of the party wait with evident anxiety. The truth is that it is one of the most acclaimed, popular and fun events on the coffee agenda.
- National Festival of the Hall (Aguadas): In August there takes place one of the most native dances of the Coffee Axis. There are still contests, dances, songs, and laughter; the one who comes for good food also finds, goes 'happy and full', as the grandparents say. It only lasts three days.
- Fiestas Cuyabras (Armenia): The anniversary of the founding of the city is celebrated with the most typical events, among which the dance contests, peasant music duets, the unmissable Reign of the Chapolera and the picturesque contest of "yipaos" stand out. ", which turns out to be a singular contest where the famous Willys jeeps do acrobatics with people or products of the field loaded up in the hood.
- Celebrations of the Palm of Wax (Salento): one of the most beautiful towns of the Coffee Axis carries out its anniversary celebrations as soon as the year begins. What you can find, yes or yes, is incredible attention from the locals, delicious trouts in unimaginable variants, craft fairs and a lot of people from every corner of the world.
- National Candle and Lantern Competition (Quimbaya): The Night of the Candles is simply unforgettable in Quimbaya, the lights go out and the reflections of hundreds of thousands of lanterns give color to this family party. No house, street, or business is left without being well "lit", starts every December 7 and ends on the 8th of the same month.
As you can see, whatever your decision, the events and parties of the Coffee Region will always guarantee you a lot of fun and, in passing, a great review of the most deeply rooted cultural traits in the community. These are other parties that you should not miss: National Encounter of Writers Luis Vidales, Manizales Cries Rock, Luna de Locos, Festival del Canasta and more.
Weather: This area has a wealth of biodiversity, a variety of climates from the temperate in the Cauca River Valley, to the paramo climate in the Nevado del Ruiz. From Calarcá, most of its municipalities have a stable climate of approximately 22 to 28 degrees, during the day. During the night the temperature decreases a few degrees. From 8 ° C to 24 ° C.
Getting there: To visit the Coffee Region you will have to reach one of the three department capitals: Manizales (capital of Caldas, La Nubia MZL airport), Pereira (capital of Risaralda, Matecaña PEI international airport), or Armenia (capital of Quindío) , El Edén International Airport AXM). By plane, there are direct flights to the airports of Manizales and Armenia both from Bogota and from Medellin. In addition to these two destinations, Pereira also has connection with Cartagena and Santa Marta.
Moving around: The routes through the Coffee Triangle offer different alternatives to travel the region, either starting from the capital cities or from nearby towns. Trips in which distances are consumed very quickly, in addition to the pleasantness that is filtered in the landscapes of coffee plantations and dense mountains of glaucous and fresh vegetation, which by their shapes and colors, seem assisted by the permanent care of skillful gardeners. The best thing without a doubt to move is to rent a car, the roads are in good condition, it is a safe area and traffic is not a big impediment. But if you do not decide to drive, there is also the option of public transport. There are bus lines that connect the main towns of the Eje Cafetero, and to get to places of interest, such as the coffee farm, the Cocora Valley, etc, there are the so-called Willys, old Jeeps that act as urban buses.
The delicious typical food of the Coffee Axis is nothing else than the peasant food of centuries ago that decided to stay at home forever. The Paisa gastronomic menu, in turn debtor to the Spanish colony inherited centuries ago and transmitted from family to family, leads the daily preparations.
Let's look at the most representative dishes of the coffee region, which clearly denote a strong Antioqueña influence!
Trout: The rainbow trout, grilled or garlic, is a culinary institution in Quindío, this fish is consumed in incredible quantities. A thin layer of patacón under the crispy trout is a vision that pays any cost.
Sancocho: It is a broth well loaded with carbohydrates and is the extraordinary combination of potatoes, yucca, banana and meats of all kinds. And all in generous portions. Now, the plate is completed by a portion of rice, salad and avocado.
Sudados: Its composition is the best of the local market: potatoes, yucca, plantain, 'hogado' to taste and some dams of beef, chicken and even fish. Always accompanied by a rich salad and a slice of avocado.
Tamal: Meat, egg, and an exquisite stew covered with corn dough ... it is tasty and leaves you wanting to repeat it, it is cooked in a bijao leaf and that's where it should be devoured.
Santarrosano chorizo: One of the tastiest chorizos in Colombia. It is a small work of art, and people, locals as visitors, know it very well.
The parva: Is a collection of small bakery delicacies. We have the buñuelos, the pandebonos, the pandeyucas, the pandequesos, the toasts, the classic breads, etc.
The Coffee Triangle is composed of the departments of Risaralda, Quindío and Caldas, which with their attractions, landscapes and coffee plantations, form a sector in progress and characterized by agricultural wealth, the development of industry, trade and tourism.
This region was created as a reference, for those who wish to visit the territory where one of the best Colombian export coffee is grown and produced. It is considered a rural tourist destination, thanks to the adaptation of haciendas, farms and traditional mansions to convert them into accommodations for visitors.
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