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Curious About Colombia?

Travel Forums Central/South America & The Caribbean Curious About Colombia?

1. Posted by rastapaul (Budding Member 9 posts) 11y

Hi everyone!

My name is Paul. I live in Bogota, Colombia and my only purpose is to give you all real information about this country, so you can start getting interested in coming over and having a good time here!

for Starters:

A little bit about the cultural activities in bogota:

"At the Park" during 2005 in Bogotá

Integration, fusion and extreme convivence characterize the Festivals at the Park that are promoted by the Cultur and Tourism Institute, that will sound to the beat of colombian music, jazz, salsa, opera and powerful rock and roll discharges in 2005!

Boy and girls will also have a festival and those who like Hip Hop will be able to return to stage at the Simon Bolivar Park.

Salsa will add the magic note during Bogota's birthday during the 8th Salsa at the park festival, while the Mariachis and the Trios will bring happiness with their "Corridos" in the Media Torta Theater at the closing event for this year's Show.

Programming

Opera and Zarzuela at the Park Festival
June 14 - 19

Old music for our time
July 24 - August 4

Salsa at the park Festival
August 5 - 6

Diversity Carnival – Big parade
August 6

Jazz at the Park Festival
September 17 - 18

Rock at the park Festival
October 15 - 17

Boy and girls at the parkl festival - boys and girls carnival
October 29 - 30

Hip Hop at the park Festival
November 19 - 20

Ranchera and Trios at the Park Festival
December 10 - 11

2. Posted by rastapaul (Budding Member 9 posts) 11y

Here's a little bit more about Colombia:


Posted 16 May 2005 12:59
US Tourism Operators visit Colombia

Bogotá.- During May 12-16 24 Us Tourism operators will be in Colombia to know about the main tourism destinations the Country offers and to exchange business opportunities with different opperators and Bsuinessmen from Colombia.

These businessmen will be in Colombia for five days traveling to Medellin, Pereira, Armenia, y Bogota, in order to find out the exporting tourism products fromthese main Capitals.

According to Proexport, the main obejctive of this visit is to allow these US Operators to promote the diveristy, the rich culture, the ecotourism options and the specialized offers that can be found in Colombia currently.

This project is part of an idea from American Airlines to promote Colombia as a tourism Destination, along with the Commerce Office, the Idustry and Turism Office and Proexport. The Offices of the Majors of Antioqui, Quindio, Risarlda, Bogota, Medellin, Armenia and Pereira are also included.

The offers:

According to Proexport, the offers presented to the Us Operators is varied and offers a wide variety of options to different market segments:

Medellin for example, will show its infrastructure for international events and conventions, as well as the variety of subregions found in this State allowing tourism agencies to promote eco trourism, agro tourism, adventure tourism and religious tourism.

In the Coffee area different Coffe Haciendas will be avaiable for visiting, Rural accomaodation fit to International standards, a place where you can enjoy Different hotels, Theme parks, and a wonderful mountain landscape that will allouw you to interact with nature.

Bogota, with the Support of the District's Culture and Tourism Institute, the religios tourism will be promoted, as well as visiting historical places, Its museums and its modern ifnrastructure built for international events.

Another very important aspect is the capacity of offering Health tourism since this city is specialized in Hospital and Medical services.

Another reason to consider visiting Colombia!

3. Posted by rastapaul (Budding Member 9 posts) 11y

And what about Violence?

Yeap, sure we do have violence around here. Unfortunately this is a place where violence lives. but it is ot happening the way you see it in CNN or BBC. Or the way the History Channel relates it on the Story of Killing Pablo.

We have had our share of terrorism, much like other latin american countries in the past. But things are changing around here, and I can assure you that today major cities like Bogota, Cali, Medellin, Barranquilla Cartagena or Santa Marta are safe and are worth visiting.

Not to mention the Caribbean islands in which you will be able to step away from all that's mundane (specially Old Providence).

Currently the violence has been diminished by the efforts made by the Government (I am not a politician), and by the attitude that people has towards this violent conflict. Many Pramilitary groups have asked for pardon and returned to society in a slow but safe path that will allow us a better future.

FARC, one of the most important terrorist groups has also been diminished by the direct action of our Army that has received a lot of good training during the last few years.
Kidnapping has decreased and today we face a bigger problem in these cities with robbers and pickpocketers, but that is something that happens everywere, or you thing Rio is a safe place (including those wonderful beaches).

If you ask me, the most important thing when coming to Colombia is to plan ahead, ask all you can, come with a mind set on having fun and opening to a new and different culture and that is it.

Please direct all your questions about anything, and they will be answered.

4. Posted by rastapaul (Budding Member 9 posts) 11y

Beautiful City to visit:

Cali

Wonderful city located towards the southern Colombian Terirtory. Its a hot city (about 28 C degrees) People are very warm. There's a lot to do in Cali. Check out these places:

La Ermita: Gothic-style church located in the downtown area and a well-known tourist destination.

La Tertulia: Museum of modern art.

Museo Arqueológico La Merced: Colonial-type church, converted into an archaeological museum displaying items from ancient cultures which inhabited the region in pre-Columbian times.

Museo del Oro del Banco de la República: Museum containing archaeological exhibits of pre-columbian cultures which existed in the region.

Cerro de las tres cruces: A hill embellished with three big crosses from which the whole city is visible.

Iglesia de San Antonio: Colonial-type church at the top of a hill.

Cerro de Cristo Rey: Another hill embellished with a large statue of Jesus Christ.

Canchas Panamericanas: Sports Complex that includes the Pascual Guerrero stadium, Evangelista Mora Gym, many sporting fields, pools and so forth. Is also widely known for a common iced drink (Cholado) sold here.

Pance: Extended rural zone at the south of the city frequently visited for leisure purposes, surrounded by plentiful vegetation and irrigated by the Pance river.

La Novena: This is a main street where you can find a lot of restaurants and fast-food places. It is located at the south and it's the caleño's preferred street to be after the big parties in Juanchito or the pink zone, at 3 A.M. Here you can buy big ass burgers, hot-dogs, chorizos, etc.

The Zoo: it has amazing animals, checkout the Butterlfies Section, and the Bird's section. Really impressive. The Iguanas are walking about while you move out of their way. Monkeys are a blast too.

These places can be visited during the DAY. Remembere just common sense.

You have to go to a couple of places that are amazing: the first one is the "empanaditas el Obelisco" where you will get some of the best empanadas Colombian Style. and the second one is a place called "el rincon de la abuela" or "grandma's Corner" Try all the cakes (specially the orange cake" and all the Emapanadas pastry style.

The Shopping malls are also wonderful: Unicentro is a classic one. You will be in a shopping mall, but what is really amazing is the amount of people. when you are there go to a little cafe called CAFE CAFE. the Coffee Milkshake is the best one!

CHIPI CHAPE is another shopping mall located in the northern side of the city. If you go there, try a place called Simon Parrilla, Great meat! or Chicken, or whatever you order.

You can also go to another spot just a bit outside Cali that is called Kilometro 38. or KM38. To get some hot chocolate with cheese and Arepa (colombian tortillas).

well thats today's information!

Hope this moves you to come here!

5. Posted by rastapaul (Budding Member 9 posts) 11y

Money information, kinda useful!

MONEY!

The Colombian currency is the PESO $... The denominations are 1.000, 2.000, 5.000, 10.000, 20.000 y 50.000 pesos. All bills are the same size. The coins in circulation are 50, 100, 200, 500 y 1000 pesos, and their size vaires. Credit cards are widely accepted in most of the places.

Banks y Corporations work from Monday - Thursday: 9:00 a.m to 3:00 p.m, Fridays: 9:00 a.m to 3:30 p.m; some of them have exteded schedules (later in the afternoon, at night or during the weekend). The last day of the month the service will be until 12:00pm. There are certain restrictions to this schedule during holidays and the end of the year.
The money exchange offices work from Monday - Friday: 9: 00 a.m. a 4:00 p.m., and Saturdays: 9:00 a.m. a 12:00 m.

ATM: Most of them work 24/7. Most of them give you the possibility of choosing between Spanish and English. The transactions offered are Balance Check, Withdrawals, Transferences and Withdrawals from Credit Card Accounts. The are everywhere, particularly around the main streets and close to the shopping malls and Party places!

Debit cards: are widely accepted in major stores and supermarkets. Hotels and restaurants also offer this pay mode.

Credit cards: Most hotels, Restaurants and stores will accept international credit cards. The most recognized here are Visa and MasterCard. Only certain exclusive places accept Amercian Express and Diners Club.

Traveler Checks: before acquiering them in your country of origin it is wise to ask about the existance of legal representatives in Colombia. The most common Traveler Checks are American Express and Citicorp.In the most exclusive hotels it is posible to pay with them.
Usually the exchange rate for the Traveler checks is better than the one for regular currency.

US Dollar exchange: Not every bank will offer this service, and normally when they do, it is only during the morning. The wisest thing to do is to go to legit Money Exchange Houses that will be very proficient with offering this service. It is wise to do the exchange in the major cities since the smaller ones will give you a lower rate. Do NOT do it out in the street!

Well this is some valuable information about how plan coming to colombia in Money Terms. It sure solves some of the questions we normally have about money issues when we are traveling to foreign countries.

6. Posted by rastapaul (Budding Member 9 posts) 11y

As you can all see, I will most certainly answer all the questions you want on visiting Colombia, since I'm an insider. I love traveling and I know the info I posted her is quite useful to all of you!. any questions, feel free to ask!

Chao