Colombia holiday with wildlife, daywalks & hiking 19 days | Latinamerica Journeys | Travel Design

Itinerary subtitle: 

NP Cocuy, Hato La Aurora, NP Tayrona

Itinerary description: 

Day 1: Arrival at Bogota airport and transport to colonial Candelaria quarter, hotel Abadia Colonial for the night.

Day 2: City tour Bogota visiting la Candelaria, the most important monuments and squares, Gold Museum, Botero Museum and Monserrate by cable car. Second night in hotel Abadia Colonial

Day 3: Tour to the Paramo de Chingaza, hike of 4-5 hrs at an altitude of 3000 - 3500m. Paramo ecosystems occur only in the Andes (mainly in Colombia) and are high mountain biomes with lakes and a vegetation characterized by huge rosette plants (frailejones). Tour includes a typical lunch at a local farm house. Third night in Bogota.

Day 4: Transfer to airport Bogota and domestic flight to Yopal. Transfer to Hato la Aurora ecolodge in los Llanos, some stops at local villages. Night at the ecolodge in private nature reserve of a typical Colombian family of the Llanos region with local music & ambiance.

Day 5 and 6: We have 2 days to make safaris on foot, by horse and by safari truck according to preferences and options. We travel to the mother hacienda in the middle of the reserve and have lunch there.  Stay at Hato la Aurora ecolodge, all meals and excursions are included. The climate change of the Llanos is extreme. During the rainy season from May to October, parts of the Llanos are flooded. This turns the woodlands and grassland into a temporary wetland, comparable to the Pantanal of Central South America. This flooding makes the area unique for its wildlife. Both the BBC and Animal Planet have been filming at this reserve of Hato la Aurora.

Day 7: Free morning at ecolodge for walking excursion and wildlife observation nearby the lodge, in midday return to Yopal at 350 m altitude with some stops along the way. Night just outside city center of Yopal.

Day 8: Travel to Monqui and night in colonial village. Along the way time to visit Laguna la Tota, the Temple of the Sun in Sogamoso, which was a religious center of the Muiscas Indians and have a local wine tasting. Monqui is situated at 2900 m altitude and gives us a good start for acclimatization for the high mountains to come. It features well preserved colonial architecture and has been declared the cutest town of Boyacá.

Day 9: Travel through the beautiful Andes to Cocuy village at 2750 m altitude, overnight in cosy village at the main square.

Day 10: Transfer up to Cocuy National Park, breakfast at cabins overlooking snow peaks, and hike to Valle de Lagunillas at 4300 m altitude in 2-3 hrs. Luggage will be transported by horses or porters and a cook will accompany us for the preparation of the meals in the Sisuma cabins. This day will be an easy day to acclimatize to the high altitude, the walk is mainly flat. All meals and luggage transport are included. Cabins are 1-2 shared rooms for the group.

Dag 11: The strongest day, a beautiful climb up to Pulpito del Diablo (4900m) and the glacier at the feet of the Pan de Azucar (5250m). If the weather conditions are good we can walk a little on the glacier. An ascent to the top of Pan de Azucar is possible when the weather allows but will have to be requested specially, a mountain guide and climbing gear are not yet included. Return to Valle de Lagunillas, second night in Sisuma cabins.

Day 12: Short hike back to entrance of the park Cocuy and long transfer to the famous colonial village Villa de Leyva, stay in beautiful hotel with spa.

Day 13: Hike through the surroundings of Villa de Leyva visiting the Candelaria desert. Time to visit the village. Second night Villa de Leyva.

Day 14: Travel back to Bogota airport for domestic flight to Santa Marta at the Caribbean coast. Overnight on the beach of Taganga village, time to visit Santa Marta in afternoon.

Day 15: Transfer to the tropical forest of NP Tayrona, start hike from Calabazo through the tropical forest, visiting Pueblito along the way, which is a small archaeological site of the Kogui culture, to the Caribbean beaches of Arrecifes. Night in cabins sector Arrecifes. Beach cabins are shared by 3-4 persons.

Day 16: Free day at the beaches of NP Tayrona for beachtime, snorkeling or more walking through the rainforest. Second night Cabañas Arrecifes.

Day 17: Hike to entrance of the NP Tayrona and transport to Cartagena. Visit on the way to project that support street children in suburb Cartagena. We may visit the Totumo mudvolcano along the way as well or have a canoe trip through the mangroves near Cartagena. Night in historical center Cartagena.

Day 18: City tour in the morning and free afternoon in Cartagena. We make a walk through the colonial center visiting the neighborhoods of Calamarí, San Diego and Getsemaní. In the afternoon time free to explore the city on your own. Second night Cartagena.

Day 19: Transfer to airport for international flight and end of the trip. Or holiday extension for more days at Cartagena, la Guajira, beach, snorkeling or diving holiday.