- Jonathan Chum
Medellín is a city that's full of things to see and do. Whether you're looking for the perfect place to hike, or simply want to enjoy some time on the water, there are plenty of options available that will keep you entertained for days. But if you want an introduction to what makes Medellin such a fun place, here are my top picks for things to do when visiting:
Explore the Museo de Antioquia and the Plaza Botero
While you're in Medellin, head to the Museo de Antioquia. This museum is a great place to learn more about the history of Medellin and Colombia's rich culture. It's also home to a large collection of artifacts from different ethnic groups like Chibchas and Muiscas. Make sure you visit the restrooms! They have done an amazing job with them; there are even sinks that look like gold bricks!
After you've had your fill at the museum, cross the street and check out Plaza Botero---a popular spot for locals and tourists alike. The reason it's so popular? All thanks to Fernando Botero: one of Colombia's most famous artists who left his mark on this plaza when he created several bronze sculptures depicting everyday life in Columbia here during his time living here as an artist-in-residence at Universidad del Valle (UV).
Stroll the Pueblito Paisa
The Pueblito Paisa is a cultural and historical center that allows you to get an insight into the life of Medellín's past. It's home to the Museo de Antioquia, which has exhibits on everything from natural history, archaeology and anthropology to art and architecture. The Museo Arte del Rio has a collection of paintings by Colombian artists inspired by the rivers that run through Medellín. There are also many restaurants, cafes and shops at the Pueblito Paisa, so it makes for a great day out if you want to see something different.
Take a cable car to Parque Arví
Take a cable car to Parque Arví.
Ride the cable car up to one of the highest points in Medellin and enjoy spectacular views of the city, its surrounding mountains, and even nearby towns. The ride takes about 15 minutes and costs just under $2 USD per person. It's a great way to get an overview of this beautiful city!
Have a day out in Guatape
Guatape is a small town in Antioquia, about an hour drive from Medellin. It's famous for its colorful houses and views of the lake. It's also a popular destination for day trips from Medellin; there are lots of things to do while you're there!
The lake is beautiful and one of Colombia's most photographed landmarks, so make sure you bring your camera with you. There are plenty of opportunities to capture photos like this one: http://bitly.com/1ufl7Bd
You can go hiking or biking around Guatape Lake or take a boat out on it (the boats will cost extra). If you don't want to pay extra, just walk around the shoreline instead!
Snap a selfie by the graffiti of El Escanto de la Memoria
This is one of the most popular graffiti sites in Medellin. The colorful murals decorate the side of a building on Calle 8 and Carrera 43, and it's a great place to take a selfie. Many tourists come here to snap photos of themselves standing next to or behind the artwork.
A graffiti artist has been working on this mural for years, but he still has more to do before he finishes his project.
Have a hike around Los Arcos Del Rio Cauca
If you're in the mood for a hike or two, Los Arcos Del Rio Cauca is a great place to start. The park is located just outside of Medellin and has many trails that offer views of the city and surrounding areas. To get there, take a taxi to the entrance of the park, which will be marked by large arch-like structures.
Once inside, you can choose from several different paths depending on how long you want your hike to be; each path has its own unique characteristics and views as well as entry fee (the cheapest being about $1). The visitor center at Los Arcos is also worth checking out if you need any information about what's in store for your walk through this beautiful space!
Enjoy an evening out at Zona Rosa
Zona Rosa is a popular area for nightlife in Medellin. There are lots of bars, clubs and restaurants where you can party until the sun comes up over the mountains. It's a good place to go out with friends, or if you're looking for some romance. Zona Rosa is safe at night, so you can take a taxi home if you don't want to walk (or if they'll let you into your apartment after hours).
Go bird watching in El Retiro Nature Reserve
If you are interested in birdwatching, El Retiro Nature Reserve is the place to go. The park has an extensive collection of birds and you can spend hours just watching them fly around.
The reserve also has an educational center that's worth checking out if you want to learn more about the birds and other wildlife in this area. In addition to their regular tours, they offer specialized tours for groups of up to 15 people. These include:
Bird Watching Tour - 1 hour guided tour by a professional guide who will explain everything about the park's avian residents (in Spanish or English). This includes information on how they live, what they eat, where they sleep and much more...
Specialized Tours - These special tours combine tourism with education: they last 2-3 hours and usually take place at dawn or dusk so that visitors can see all kinds of animals in their natural habitat (including many species of birds). Each tour offers different options depending on what you would like most; whether it be learning some facts about nature or just having fun while doing so!
Chillin' on the lake at Parque Norte
Parque Norte is a beautiful park in the north part of Medellin. It's a great place for a walk, run or bike ride. The lake is surrounded by restaurants and bars, so you can stop at one for dinner and drinks on your way home.
If you're looking for something active to do, Parque Norte has an outdoor gym with equipment available for use during daylight hours. There are also courts where people play soccer or volleyball as well as areas where they can play pickleball (a hybrid between tennis and racquetball).
I hope this article has given you some insight into what it's like to be a tourist in Medellin, and how you can make the most of your time there. The city is full of exciting places to visit, delicious food to eat and beautiful people with whom to connect. Don't forget to check out the list below of things that I think are essential when visiting Colombia:
Guatape Lake Day Trip from Medellin
Paragliding over Medellin City
Parque Explora Kids Museum & Aquarium for All Ages in Medellin! A Must Do!
Medellin Bike Tour: Outdoor Cycling Adventure Through Colombia's Capital City With Optional Lunch Stop At End Of Journey!