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Medellin is Colombia's second largest city with around 2.5 million inhabitants in the city and a million or so more in the metropolitan area. It's located in the Aburra Valley at an elevation of almost 1,500 metres above sea level.
Botero Plaza is the place that many visitors head to when visiting Medellin. It is in this square that many of Botero's famous bronze statues are placed. Across from the plaza is located the Museo de Antioquia, which houses many more statues and paintings by Botero. The museum also shows many 19th and 20th century national and international artists.
Medellin is possibly the best place in South America to either try paragliding, or to get certified in it. The mountains surrounding the city are often filled with paragliders. A week-long intensive course usually costs around US$400, including all the materials. It is worth checking that your teacher speaks fluent English!
This is the biggest and most prized festival of the local "Paisas". Consisting of a whole week of events, concerts, parades and parties it cumulates in the beautiful parade of the "silleteros" who design inspiring flower displays which they carry on their backs from the nearby municpality of Sana Elena to the centre of Medellín to cheers of the huge crowds. Not to be missed.
Average high and low temperatures are very constant throughout the year: 27 °C or 28 °C during the day and 16 °C or 17 °C at night. Records are only 33 °C and 10 °C respectively, giving the city an almost spring-ish climate year round. Almost, because precipitation is relatively high as well, with 1,600-1,700 mm a year. December to February is the driest and and April-June and August-November the wettest months.
|Avg Max||27.6 °C||27.9 °C||28 °C||27.6 °C||27.5 °C||27.9 °C||28.3 °C||28.3 °C||27.7 °C||26.9 °C||27 °C||27.1 °C|
|Avg Min||16.8 °C||17.1 °C||17.3 °C||17.5 °C||17.4 °C||17.1 °C||16.7 °C||16.8 °C||16.7 °C||16.8 °C||17 °C||16.8 °C|
|Rainfall||65 mm||80 mm||126 mm||161 mm||199 mm||158 mm||119 mm||148 mm||178 mm||212 mm||147 mm||94 mm|
José María Córdova International Airport (MDE) is about half an hour from the city. Destinations include Bogota, Miami, New York City, Panama City, Caracas, Lima, Quito, San José, Fort Lauderdale, San Andrés Island, Cali, Barranquilla, Cartagena and Santa Marta.
Taxis are plentiful and cheap.
A very well organised (the pride of the local "Paisas") metro system has two lines that cover the elongated city well. Travelling above ground it gives great views of this andean urbanisation. Due to the poorer communities being forced to build up into the mountains, the first and only cable car used for public transport has been built to allow better access to the city's more humble residents. The cable cars offer great views and are often frequented by tourists.
Many buses also sprawl the city but the system is somewhat disorganised and should be avoided by passers-by as to not get lost.
The Bandeja Paisa, is the local dish that is famous throughout the whole country.
|Lleras Park Hostal||Carrera 39 #8-72, El Poblado Zona Rosa||Hostel||-|
|Casa Kiwi Hostel Medellin||Carrera 36 # 7 - 10||Hostel||85|
|Global Hostal Colombia||Carrera 35 #7-58 Zona Rosa||Guesthouse||-|
|Hostal Tamarindo||Calle 7 #35-36 El Poblado||Hostel||-|
|Hotel Conquistadores||Cra 54 # 49-31 Medellin||Hotel||57|
|Samán Hostel||Cl 10 N° 36-24||Hostel||81|
|Sunshine Hostel Medellin||Calle 9 43c - 36||Hostel||77|
|The Pit Stop Hostel||Cra 43e, No 5 -110, Patio Bonito Poblado||Hostel||82|
|Tiger Paw Hostel||Car. 36 No. 10-49||Hostel||-|
|Yellow HouseHostel||Carrera 81a 47a - 48 La Floresta||Hostel||88|
|Black Sheep Hostel Medellin||Transversal 5A #45-133 Patio Bonito||Hostel||85|
|Sophia's House||Calle 37 D #82A-27 Laureles||Hostel||-|
|Palm Tree Hostel Medellin||Carrera 67 N° 48 D-63, Barrio Suramericana||Hostel||83|
|El Arupo Hostel-Medellin||Carrera 33N7-135 Barrio El Poblado||Guesthouse||-|
|Ram Hostal||Calle 11A 42 05||Guesthouse||-|
|Casa Blanca||Transversal 5A No 45-256||Hostel||73|
|61Prado Guesthouse||Calle 61 #50a-60||Guesthouse||80|
|Club Vip Medellin||Carrera 41, Sur 21 161||Hotel||-|
|Waypoint Hostel||Carrera 48 B # 10 Sur - 08||Hostel||-|
|Chillhouse||Transversal 34 Sur #31E59||Guesthouse||-|
|Geo Hostel||Carrera 35 No 8A-58||Hostel||88|
|La Campana Hotel Boutique||Calle 11A # 31A - 70||Hotel||-|
|Casa Mayde||Calle 10 37-39||Guesthouse||-|
|Hotel Florida Medellin||Carrera 70 No44B - 38||HOTEL||-|
|Secret Buddha Hostel||Calle 94B Sur No 51-121, Inmaculada 2, La Estrella||Hostel||86|
|Lake View Hostel||Guatape, Antioquia||GUESTHOUSE||80|
|The Wandering Paisa Backpackers Hostel||Calle 44 A No. 68 A 76 Laureles.||Hostel||83|
|Arcadia Hostel||Calle 11A, No. 31A-188 Las Lomas 1, Poblado||Hostel||79|
|La Casa Colombiana||via el arenal, San Rafael de Antioquia. 30 minutes from Guatape||HOSTEL||-|
|Hostel Lucana||Transv 39B 70 91 Avenida Nutibara||Hostel||-|
|Hotel Porton Medellin||Carerra 43 A # 9 sur 51. Avenida el Poblado.||Hotel||-|
|Hotel Cyan Suites||Carrera 29C #10c - 100||HOTEL||-|
|Art Hotel||Carrera 41 # 9 -31||Hotel||-|
|Paraworld Adventure Hostel||calle 8 #43A 89||HOSTEL||-|
|Calle 10 Hostel||Calle 10 43D-D5 El Poplado||HOSTEL||-|
|Urban Buddha Hostel||Circular 73 A 38-55 Laureles||Hostel||82|
|Hostal Antiguo||CL 52 A CR 55 45||Hostel||83|
|Studio Apartment Poblado||Avenida El Poblado, Apt. 210||APARTMENT||-|
|Hostel Poblado Park||Calle 8, 43A-89||HOSTEL||-|
|La Casa Colombiana||Medellin Santa Elena, Vereda el Plan||Guesthouse||-|
|Tamarindo Inn||Carrera 43A # 7D-58 Ave. El Poblado||Guesthouse||-|
|Casa RAM||Calle 11 A Number 42 -05, El Poblado||HOSTEL||80|
|Gran Casa de Laureles||Circular 73b 77-35 Laurels, Medellin||GUESTHOUSE||-|
|Pixelhouse Residencias||Carrera 48B # 10 Sur 89||GUESTHOUSE||-|
|Upcycle Hostel||Calle 25 Sur 45-12||HOSTEL||-|
|Laureles Guesthouse||Diagonal 75C 32E - 19||GUESTHOUSE||-|
|Casa Bachue||Cra 82a 28-52||GUESTHOUSE||-|
|Happy Buddha Boutique Hostal||Carrera 35 7 - 108 Parque Lleras, El Poblado||HOSTEL||87|
|The Coffee House Hostel||Calle 34 # 66A -93||HOSTEL||-|
|Hostal La Finca Culturas Unidas||Vereda Los Cedros, San Jerónimo||HOSTEL||-|
|Grand Hostel Medellin||Transversal 6 #4570 Patio Bonito Poblado||HOSTEL||-|
|Eco Hostel Medellin Permaculture||Vereda La Guali Amaga||HOSTEL||-|
|Lemon Hostel||Calle 32F Numero 74B -92||HOSTEL||-|
|International House and Hostel Medellin||Calle 32B No. 66C-06 Belen Malibu||HOSTEL||-|
|Casa de Campo||Santa Elena||GUESTHOUSE||-|
|Moral Spring||Carrera 67 A, Number 48 D- 86||HOSTEL||-|
Internet cafes are easy to find in any city or town. Expect rates to run about $1,250-2,500 (around $US 0.50-1.00) per hour, depending on how much competition there is (i.e., cheap in Bogotá, expensive in the middle of nowhere). Quality of connections varies enormous and tends to better in populated places and tourist areas. Wifi is getting more and more popular in some hotels, restaurants and bars, but don't count on it and be careful regarding your privacy.
See also International Telephone Calls
The country calling code to Colombia is: 57. To make an international call from Colombia, the code is: 005.
Using your own phone and SIM card is expensive so if you are planning to do quite a few calls, buy a phone or just a SIM card. It's simple enough to get a SIM card and even an unlocked phone at the international airport in Bogotá, although there is, of course, a price hike. They're not hard to find in any city either, just ask your hotel or hostel staff where to go. Topping up is also easy, and can be done pretty much on any street corner. The carriers you'll most likely see are Claro, Tigo, and Movistar. Claro is the most expensive (by a little bit), but has the widest coverage in the country, if you expect to get off the beaten path.
4-72 is the unusual name of Colombia's postal service. They have post offices throughout the country, which are open usually from 9:00am to 5:00pm Monday to Friday and sometimes on Saturday mornings as well. That doesn't apply to all offices though, only the larger ones in the big cities. But for example along the Caribbean coast, offices tend to close between noon and 2:00pm. But even at the ones that are officially open all day long, it might be difficult to get anything done during those hours. For domestic services, sending letters and postcards is mostly reliable but takes days, for international services don't hold your breath. Eventually, a postcard or letter might arrive in the country of destination but it's almost not worth it. For parcels, you are better off using companies like FedEx, TNT, DHL or UPS.
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