Discover Colombia

14 days
from
£2,999
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Suitable for:
Age 16+
Activity level:
Leisurely
Activity Level: Leisurely
Trip code: 
AAK
Ways to Travel:
Guided Group, Tailor Made Adventures
Activity:
Culture
Group size:
5–16
Min age:
16

Friendly and diverse, Colombia is simply a must-visit destination

Colombia is a vast country still largely undiscovered despite its amazing variety of landscapes and culture. On this journey from the Andes to the Caribbean we experience the contrasts between cosmopolitan Bogota, colourful Cartagena, and welcoming rural towns. After soaking up the atmosphere of Villa de Leyva and walking amid giant wax-palms in the the Zona Cafetera, we'll learn what it takes to produce the finest coffee.

Highlights

  • Uncover the historical delights of Colombia's capital city
  • Explore Villa de Leyva's colonial centre
  • Learn all about coffee production on a farm tour in the lush Coffee Zone
  • Walk amid wax palm trees in Cocora Valley
  • Visit Medellin the "City of Eternal Spring" 

Key information

  • 12 nights hotels with en suite facilities
  • Some leisurely walks
  • Group normally 4 to 16, plus leader. Min age 16 yrs
  • Travel by internal flight and private minibus
  • Countries visited: Colombia

What's included

  • All breakfasts and 3 lunches
  • All accommodation
  • All transport and listed activities
  • Tour leader throughout
  • Flights from London (if booking incl. flights)

What's not included

  •  Travel insurance
  • Single accommodation (available on request)
  • Visas or vaccinations
Call for general departures:
020 8772 3936
Call for tailor made trips:
020 8772 3874
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Responsible Travel

At Exodus we believe in the power of Responsible Travel.

Every time we travel, we are part of a global movement that creates jobs, builds more sustainable societies, encourages cultural understanding and safeguards common natural and cultural heritage. To learn more about what Responsible Travel means to Exodus click here… 

Itinerary

  • Day 1

    Depart London

  • Day 2

    Free morning; afternoon tour of La Candelaria district.

    Passengers on our Avianca group flight will have flown overnight and arrived today in the early hours of the morning. The morning is free to rest (hotel rooms are available for all clients) and in the afternoon the group will meet up in the hotel lobby before setting out with the tour leader on a walking tour of La Candelaria district where the hotel is located. Today we'll have an introduction to Bogota and Colombia in general, with the walking tour including a visit to the much celebrated Gold Museum.

    Accommodation: Hotel Augusta or similar

    Standard Hotel

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 3

    Morning walking tour including Monserrate viewpoint; free afternoon.

    This morning we'll have breakfast in the hotel and then set off once more to continue exploring this fascinating capital city. We'll visit the museum exhibiting works from famous Colombian painter and sculptor Fernando Botero, and then get a cable car up to Monserrate viewpoint high above the city. Back down in the city, we learn about the diverse cultures of Colombia whilst visiting the Paloquemao market. This afternoon is free for you to do as you please - you may wish to visit one of the artisanal markets, go on a graffiti tour, or do a cookery class. Your tour leader will be on hand to give advice and assistance.

    Accommodation: Hotel Augusta or similar

    Standard Hotel

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 4

    To Villa de Leyva via the salt cathedral in Zipaquira.

    We leave Bogota this morning and drive northwards for about an hour and a half to Zipaquira, where we'll visit the unique Salt Cathedral. This subterranean cathedral was carved out of the salt bedrock in an old salt mine. We will have a guided tour, following the carved stations of the cross to reach the main part of the cathedral, which has the capacity for over 8000 worshippers. Continuing onwards by road, we should arrive at the beautiful colonial town of Villa de Leyva in the late afternoon.

    Accommodation: Hotel Meson de Los Virreyes or similar

    Standard Hotel

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 5

    Walking tour of Villa de Leyva; visit fossil museum.

    This morning we will have a walking tour of Villa de Leyva, taking in the main plaza and the most important and significant colonial buildings, and get an insight into the town's history and the local culture. We will also go to the Fossil Museum, home to an incredibly well preserved 12-metre long fossilised Kronosaurus discovered by a local farmer. The afternoon has been left free for further exploration of the town's cobbled streets and craft shops, or to simply relax in the laid-back cafes and restaurants.

    Accommodation: Hotel Meson de Los Virreyes or similar

    Standard Hotel

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 6

    Fly to the 'Coffee Zone'; travel to Salento.

    We drive back to Bogota (approx. 4hrs depending upon traffic) today to catch a short flight to Armenia, in the heart of Colombia's 'Coffee Zone'. From here it’s a fairly short drive (approx. 1 hour) to the quaint town of Salento, a municipality in the north eastern part of the department of Quindío. This colourful and picturesque mountain town boasts a number of fine houses built in the traditional architectural style from the region. Surrounded by distant snow-capped mountains, Salento has a very special feel, and this evening we recommend visiting one of the music bars around the main town plaza.

    Accommodation: Hotel Salento Real or similar

    Standard Hotel

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch
  • Day 7

    Walk amid the wax palm trees of Cocora Valley; coffee tour.

    Today we'll board 'Jeep Willys' to drive out on the scenic route to the wonderful Cocora Valley. Part of the wider Parque Nacional Los Nevados, Cocora Valley is located in the central Andean range, just outside of Salento. The valley has a unique landscape and has been regarded by Colombia as a sanctuary for its national tree; the Wax palm (Ceroxylon quindiuense). The tall Palms cover the valley, which is now protected and declared as a monument to protect both the tree itself and also the endemic species that depend on it. The spectacular valley is great for walking as well as taking photos from some of the viewpoints. We'll do a two hour walk, and if anyone prefers not to walk on the rough terrain then there are a couple of cafes' in town in which to wait and enjoy a freshly prepared coffee.

    Afterwards we will visit a coffee plantation, where we will find out about the whole production process from seedling to cup, as well as learning about the plantations themselves and the many workers who rely on coffee for their livelihoods. Naturally, we will have the chance to sample some of this glorious coffee.

    Accommodation: Hotel Salento Real or similar

    Standard Hotel

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch
  • Day 8

    Orchid farm visit; fly to Medellin.

    This morning we will visit La Romelia Orchid Farm where you will enjoy more than 6000 orchid plants, an interesting variety of carnivorous plants and around 122 species of wild birds. The farm has spectacular surrounding mountain views and you will also find many other crops like yucca, citrus and avocado. After lunch we will catch our flight to Medellin, where we will be transferred to the hotel. 

    Accommodation: Hotel Acqua Express or similar

    Standard Hotel

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch
  • Day 9

    City tour of Medellin.

    Today we take to the streets to discover Medellin, visiting the botanic garden, city centre, Botero square and Antioquia Musuem, a wonderful art museum. Medellin is a busy city situated in a narrow but very fertile valley, between two Andean mountain ridges. This region is famous for its coffee plantations, butterflies, orchids and mild climate, giving it the nickname as the 'City of Eternal Spring'.

    Accommodation: Hotel Acqua Express or similar

    Standard Hotel

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 10

    Visit flower farm in Santa Elena; fly to Cartagena.

    Today we visit a flower farm in Santa Elena to witness the wonderful variety and colour of this famous region. The flower farm we visit has rows and rows of dahlias, geraniums, pansies, petunias, orchids, anthuriums, begonias, lilies and more. Colombia is a huge exporter of cut blooms, supplying around 60% of the flowers in the USA. Afterwards, we take a flight to Cartagena where we'll spend the next few nights.

    Accommodation: Hotel Casa Mara or similar

    Standard Hotel

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch
  • Day 11

    Walking tour of Cartagena old town.

    Today we explore the beautiful colonial centre of Cartagena on foot, wandering through narrow streets and colourful plazas to discover some of the city's historical gems, including the Puerta del Reloj (clock tower gate), Plaza de los Coches, Plaza Bolivar, and the church of San Pedro Claver. After a break for lunch and an escape from the heat of the day, we resume our tour of the city this afternoon with a visit to San Felipe Fortress. San Felipe dominates the old town and is the largest Spanish fort in the Americas, and its solid construction allowed Colombian forces to successfully defend the city against frequent attacks in the 17th and 18th centuries. Tonight is the perfect opportunity to enjoy the lively nightlife of this Caribbean gem of a city.

    Accommodation: Hotel Casa Mara or similar

    Standard Hotel

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 12

    Morning mangrove canoe tour; free afternoon.

    In the morning we will transfer by vehicle to La Boquilla fishing village about 20 minutes outside of Cartagena. After an introduction from a local guide, we will board canoes along with local guides who will take us on a 1 hour ride around the tropical mangroves of Ciénaga de La Virgen. Along the way our guides will explain the endemic birdlife and talk about the way of life for people who live here. Once the canoe ride is over you will have some time to visit the village and then we'll head back to Cartagena. If you prefer to stay at the beach in La Boquilla, you could do this and take a taxi back later on.

    This afternoon has been left free for further exploration of the city or simply soaking up the atmosphere by sitting in a shaded plaza. Tonight we'll enjoy our third and final night in Cartagena.

    Accommodation: Hotel Casa Mara or similar

    Standard Hotel

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 13

    Transfer to Cartagena Airport; fly to Bogota; trip ends.

    Our final morning, we transfer to Cartagena Airport to catch our flight to Bogota which will arrive in time for the evening flight to London. If not travelling on the international group flight please be aware that you will probably not be back in Bogota until at least 17:00. The land only portion of the trip ends upon returning to Bogota, and we recommend making any onward travel arrangements for the following day.

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 14

Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Essential Info

Visas

Colombia

Citizens of the USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and most European countries do not require a visa and will be granted a 90-day entry permit on arrival. Please ensure you have at least 3 blank pages in your passport.

Vaccinations

Colombia

There are no mandatory vaccination requirements. Recommended vaccinations are: Polio, Tetanus, Diphtheria, Typhoid, Hepatitis A, Yellow Fever. The risk of malaria is slight but you may wish to consult your GP or travel health clinic for further advice.

Zika fever is a mosquito‐borne viral disease and a known risk in places visited on this trip. There is currently no vaccine or prophylaxis available, we therefore strongly recommend you take the usual precautions to avoid mosquito bites. 

Eating and Drinking

All breakfasts and 3 lunches.

Please note that Colombia is not very vegetarian friendly, especially in rural areas, where meat forms a major part of the diet and many soups are often made with a meat base or products. However in Bogota and Cartagena there are a wide range or restaurant and eating choices, to cater to all needs. Breakfast is provided everyday and is usually eggs (fried, boiled or scrambled), bread or arepas (thick corn pancakes), local cheese, tea or coffee and a fruit juice. In Tayrona National Park the principal restaurant has a great menu of locally caught fish, with meat and vegetable options.

Weather

Bogota and Villa de Leyva are warm during the day but temperatures can drop quite significantly at night and rains occur at any time of the year. In the coffee region the climate is warmer during the days but again can be cooler in the evenings. We visit the Andes mountain range, where weather is very unpredictable and can range from warm and sunny to cold in the space of a few hours. On the Caribbean coast the weather is generally very hot and humid year-round.

Bogota

Cartagena

Is this trip for you?

This trip is graded leisurely.

It is not activity based however there are several city tours on foot, as well as a day walk in Cocora Valley, and canoeing in mangroves whilst at the Caribbean coast. The itinerary visits some of the main cultural and natural highlights of Colombia. We travel by private minibus and take three internal flights to allow you to experience as much as possible of this beautiful and diverse county in a short space of time. You should be aware that there are some fairly long road journeys involved in the itinerary. We mostly stay in mid-range 3 star hotels throughout the trip, and free time is built in to each destination in order to ensure that the itinerary is relaxing as well as insightful. Altitudes: Bogota is at an altitude of approx. 2640 metres above sea level and is the highest destination visited on the itinerary. It is rare to feel any adverse effects at this altitude. In the coffee region we'll be staying at approx. 1895 metres above sea level in the town of Salento and approx. 2150 metres above sea level in Villa de Leyva.

 

Following a review of all our trips we have categorised this trip as not suitable for full wheelchair users, but it may be suitable for other persons of reduced mobility. Please contact customer services to discuss the trip and your personal condition.

Call for general departures:
020 8772 3936
Call for tailor made trips:
020 8772 3874
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Accommodation

Hotels

12 nights hotels with en suite facilities. This trip offers a good standard of accommodation throughout the trip. We'll spend 12 nights in hotels with en suite facilities that are located in interesting areas, for example in Bogota we stay in the historic 'Candelaria' district and in Cartagena within the 'Getsemani' district. Some of the hotels have swimming pools. The final two nights feature a beach hotel on the Caribbean Coast, the perfect way to end the trip! Please note this is an EcoHotel which does not provide hot water.

Call for general departures:
020 8772 3936
Call for tailor made trips:
020 8772 3874
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Expert Blog Entries

  • Reviewed October 2019
    Deborah Terry

    Colourful Colombia

    A great trip to an often-misunderstood country. Yes, it is safe - even Medellin, where I did a couple of solo days at the end of the trip. This holiday covers a huge variety of landscapes, towns and cities. The people are great, the hotels were good, wifi is fast and reliable, and everywhere is so colourful - houses, buses, textiles, and scenery from the Andes to the Caribbean. Highly recommended.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The Salt Cathedral was extraordinary, central Bogota has some great historical buildings, but my favourites were the whitewashed Villa de Leyva and Salento with its brilliantly painted houses. Plus full-on Cartegena of course....indescribably beautiful.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    We were spoilt - we were a group of just eight and in addition to the kindly and very lovely and experienced Juan Carlos we had livewire Lina, who was shadowing him. The perfect combination!

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Only the usual Exodus stuff - be prepared for anything...early starts, torrential thunderstorms, roadworks delays, far too much good food. Consider flying Air France/KLM as their timings are far more civilised than the direct Avianca flight from London. Go a day early if you can, and maybe do a bit of independent travel at the end.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Just go!
  • Reviewed August 2019
    Pauline Gallagher

    Beautiful Colombia

    A very enjoyable holiday, seeing a lot of this beautiful country.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    So many moments, from our very first morning seeing the colourful celebrations for Bogota day; later the highlights for me were the salt cathedral at Zipaquira, beautiful Villa de Leyva, Salento, a great day walking in the Cocora valley and finally Palomino, where we met some of the Kogi indigenous people and enjoyed a relaxing time at the beach.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Diane was always available and helpful, doing her best to ensure the group had a good experience. She was aldo. particularly considerate to one of our group who had mobility problems.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Be prepared for long journeys and big differences in temperatures.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Sometimes the vehicles used to transport us around the country did not have enough seat belts that worked properly. This is really not acceptable.
  • Reviewed August 2019
    Pauline Gallagher

    Beautiful Colombia

    A very enjoyable holiday, seeing a lot of this beautiful country.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    So many moments, from our very first morning seeing the colourful celebrations for Bogota day; later the highlights for me were the salt cathedral at Zipaquira, beautiful Villa de Leyva, Salento, a great day walking in the Cocora valley and finally Palomino, where we met some of the Kogi indigenous people and enjoyed a relaxing time at the beach.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Diane was always available and helpful, doing her best to ensure the group had a good experience. She was aldo. particularly considerate to one of our group who had mobility problems.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Be prepared for long journeys and big differences in temperatures.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Sometimes the vehicles used to transport us around the country did not have enough seat belts that worked properly. This is really not acceptable.
  • Reviewed February 2019
    Geoffrey Stevenson

    An Excellent Overview

    This was an excellent introduction to a fascinating country which is rapidly recovering from a bad history. It is blessed with a multitude of natural resources and can grow anything in the diverse climatic regions which we experienced. Tourism can only help. This tour showed a selection of regions from the cool capital, the colonial Villa de Leyva, the coffee region to the hot Caribbean coast. I enjoyed the many ecotours and museum visits. The hotels were generally good and the travelling was often long, to be expected in a large country. It felt safe, the food was diverse and invariably very good. The only disappointment was on the last day, the Caribbean was too dangerous to bathe in, and nearly always is in this locality.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    I enjoyed travelling through the fruit growing areas and seeing the vast and diverse areas of cultivation.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Group leader was very knowledgeable about Colombia but a bit of a loner.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Hang on to your possessions in busy areas.
  • Reviewed February 2019
    Alex Davids

    Interesting Trip, pity about the Guide

    A good introduction to the variety of the country based on the Foreign Office’s areas that are safe for travel. The hotel in Bogota was cold with no way to heat the room. This wasn’t helped by arriving at 4:30 am and discovering later in the morning that the window to the room had been left open all night. The quality of buses used on the trip was variable with the one used from Cartagena to Palomino being in particularly poor condition. Highlights were the coffee region with its colourful towns and the variety of outdoor activities there, and the time spent in Cartagena. I’m not sure that the time spent in Palomino was worth it, unless you simply want some time to ‘chill out’ at the end of the trip.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The free half-day spent in Cartagena getting to know the old town at my own pace. I spent memorable time in the courtyard of the University Graduate School where some of the ashes of Gabriel Garcia Marquez, whose work I greatly admire, are buried under the memorial to him.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    I was very disappointed by the poor group leading and organisational skills of our tour guide, Juan Carlos. Plans for the day were not always clear and timings were sometimes changed without the whole group being informed. When there were problems raised by the group, he allowed things to escalate rather than take control of the situation. This was all exacerbated by his poor command of English, where he constantly substituted Spanish words of English ones (‘articulations’ for ‘joints’ of the body, ‘conventional centre’ for ‘conference centre’, etc.) . As a result, his well-informed explanations were hard to follow and often only made full sense to me later when I got back my hotel room and read my Lonely Planet Guide.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Don’t lock your luggage if you are booking it through from Santa Marta to London via Bogota. The integrated locks on my case were cut, despite being TSA compliant and the bag ruined. Avianca staff tell me that this is a common occurrence and we should have been warned about it at check-in or by the group leader.
  • Reviewed January 2019
    Martin & Margaret Wolverson

    Discover Colombia

    A beautiful and very varied country., Always felt safe (in Bogata you are never more than a hundred yds from a policeman). Weather was great - not too hot and only half hour of rain in the fortnight. Coach travel was fine, never more than 1.5 hours without a stop. The internal flights are a neccessary evil to cover the distances. The walking tour of Bogata on first day started early AM (not PM as in trip notes) so we had little chance to rest after journey. We had rest time in the PM but this is all the wrong way round. We added an extra night at end of holiday in Bogata (daily flights to Heathrow) this split the journey time up so we had enough energy for the 3.5 hr drive home from Heathrow and helped us to acclimatize to the lower UK temperatures. Hotels Meson de los Virreyes and Casa Mara both excellent. If Exodus still use Hotel Salento Real, be prepared to abandon this and move to one of the many other hotels/ hostels in the lovely town on Salento. At the coastal ecohotel, couldn't find, and guide didn't know of any ''hiking trails in the area around the hotel''

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Graffiti, Music everywhere, Jeep Willys and walk and lunch in Corcora Valley, Coffee tour, Orchid farm and lunch

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Juan Carlos was a lovely man, very knowledgeable of history, but could be a bit vague on timings. It's a shame he didn't accompany us for group dinners. We were left to our own devices invariably splitting up.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Watch out for holes in pavements, we took torches but most places were very well lit.
  • Reviewed January 2019
    Philip Nield

    Fascinating country

    Colombia is a fascinating country with a rich variety of people and climates (all good). Given the size of the country we needed to travel a lot, so saw the insides of buses and airports more than most trips. The places we visited were all different and interesting. Colombia feels like it's in the early stages of waking up to the benefits of tourism - and that's both a good and a bad thing. Nowhere was crowded, but also few places were "fully prepared" (eg signage only in Spanish). The food was a pleasant surprise; (we'd heard that it's for meat eaters but there was lots of choice of vegetables, fish etc and glorious fruit at breakfast).

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    There were two. Seeing a traditional "cowboy/cowgirl" dance event in the main square in Bogota on Sunday. The pride and joy coming from the dancers was catching. Coming close (but not really close enough) to the tribe of indigenous Indians near Tayrona. They're distinguishable by their dress. It would have been wonderful if we'd encountered other tribes.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    He wasn't as organised as other Exodus group leaders. It started well when he got photocopies of all passports at the first hotel and thereby avoided the unnecessary fuss we get used to (on other Exodus trips) at subsequent hotels on checking in. But timekeeping wasn't good. With 15 guests there are always slow-coaches and group leaders need to instil just a bit of discipline. Sometimes messages weren't clear, ie not everybody heard everything. For example on most Exodus trips the guide will use the time on the bus to give us guidance, rather than waiting till the bus stops.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    If you've been worried about Colombia don't be. It's a welcoming country. But check the trip notes as you'll spend quite a time travelling. The Bogota flight was more manageable than I thought - I've had much worse jet-lag going to other places. But! Beware if you're travelling through Bogota airport. We left from Santa Marta for Heathrow via Bogota and our suitcase was opened and trashed (by police we assume) at Bogota airport. We discovered this at Heathrow. Nothing stolen; but a broken suitcase and a bureaucratic ordeal lies ahead. Other Exodus travellers had similar experiences.
  • Reviewed September 2018
    Taki Payazidis

    Wonderful Tour

    Just came back from this wonderful tour of this lovely country. The tour was very well organised and diverse in it's content. All the places we visited and the activities were different which made it all the more enjoyable. Colombia is a very big country which meant that there were a couple of long days travelling with internal flights but that was to be expected. I loved this tour and would recommend.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Salt Cathedral, Coffee tour, Cartagena.
  • Reviewed September 2018
    Anne Grabham

    A fabulous trip!

    When I told people I was going to Colombia for a holiday the reaction was always the same - Really?? Isn't it dangerous? What do you want to go there for? It's a shame that a country gets a dodgy reputation and, in the case of Colombia, a totally unjustified reputation. Wherever we went people were friendly, we felt completely safe and at ease and the scenery was stunning. I'm sure there may be areas of the country which aren't so good for tourists to visit but this is surely the case in most countries. The trip is a wonderful mixture of culture, sightseeing and walking and with plenty of free time to explore further on your own and spend time in cafes watching the fascinating street life.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    There were so many highlights but for me Villa de Leyva was very special. It's main square (apparently the largest public square in Colombia) had no huge statue and/or water feature in its centre as you would expect from a square of this size (just a very small statue) and was also completely unevenly cobbled all over. Surrounded on all four sides by low rise, white washed buildings, with a beautiful backdrop of green mountains behind, gave it a very special quality and made it quite clear that this was a Latin American town not a European one. When 6 men on horseback unexpectedly appeared in the square, galloped round two sides and out again it made it just perfect! Guitarists abound in cafes and on street corners adding to the atmosphere. Bogota was a surprise. I was expecting it to be a fairly nondescript city, just used as a starting point for the trip, but it was a real delight. The old city was fascinating to explore with beautiful buildings, interesting museums and lively street life. The Cocora Valley was stunning - a really beautiful area. Cartegena we knew would be lovely and it certainly didn't disappoint. Oh, and the Salt Cathedral! Simply amazing!

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Juan Carlos was friendly and very knowledgeable about his country. He suggested some good places to eat and in Cartegena introduced us to Colombian street food which not only was delicious but also extremely good value! He was particularly helpful to me when my suitcase failed to turn up at the start of the trip. I wasn't reunited with it until three days before the end of the holiday but Juan Carlos spent a lot of time emailing and telephoning people trying to locate it for me. He helped me fill in endless forms and accompanied me to the airport to pick it up when it finally appeared.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Wear long trousers and use insect repellent in the coffee plantation! We had a great time picking coffee and exploring the plantation but I was badly bitten!

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Colombia is a beautiful country - lush and green, with stunning scenery. The towns are so pretty with their colourfully painted houses and the people are friendly and welcoming. I would have liked to have seen more of the country, a three week trip would have been great.
  • Reviewed September 2018
    Andy Davies

    Fantastic Diverse Tour

    Wow. Just returned from an amazing trip and can't believe how much we did in the time. Colombia is colourful, very friendly and safe. Juan Carlos was a great guide and he looked after our wonderful group very well indeed. A lot of travel but in a country so vast not unexpected. Huge variation in climate from cold in Bogota to steamy and humid near the Caribbean. Fantastic food and lots of options Fabulous safe experience and my third trip to South America; don't hesitate just go! Recommend you go one day early to recover from the trip; Exodus arranged this for me and it worked like clockwork. I am planning to return to Colombia independently next year based on this experience.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Sitting at the orchid farm eating lunch whilst dozens of hummingbirds were feeding right next to us. Last group meal on the beach with a bonfire and Latino music with the waves almost lapping our feet! The colour of the buildings and awesome food.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Juan Carlos was great. Very professional and intelligent kind man who really went out of his way for me several times. He needs to work on his table tennis though :)

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    See above. Book a day early to recover from the flights. We started at 8am and some people had only arrived at the hotel at 4.30am. Bring mosquito spray for the coffee plantation tour.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Fabulous experience from booking to return.

Dates & Prices

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An overview of flight options

Exodus is committed to making joining our tours as easy as possible, wherever you live. We generally only block book seats from London, but this certainly does not mean that you need to fly from there. Depending on the route and airlines available, there will usually be various options available for those who want to fly from their local airport.

This page aims to provide a useful overview of the options available to our clients. However, the best flight arrangements should be tailored to your personal requirements, so please contact our Sales team for expert advice.

 

What kind of options do I have ?

1. We can book for you: Flights from anywhere in the world - not via London  

Depending on the route, this may be direct or via an overseas hub like Amsterdam, the Middle East or elsewhere. On short haul routes there may be direct flights with low cost airlines, charter flights or scheduled airlines. Exodus can book most, but not all, of these for you. The most appropriate airline may be different to that which we use for the group flight from London, but many people now travel on different airlines and meet up with their fellow passengers at the destination.

Pros Cons
  • May be the most direct route
  • Often the extra fare compared to the London flight is minimal.
  • As you will be in the hands a single airline for your entire journey, the airline will be responsible for your bags and your connections.
  • You may not be able to join the group transfers. However, we can usually arrange private transfers, or book your flights to try and coincide with the group transfers. See notes on transfer arrangements below.

 

2. We can book for you: Connecting flights from your local airport to London

Exodus can book connecting flights to London so you can join the group flight there. Connecting times will be followed according to airline advice, or as requested by clients. There are two types of fares we can use for this option: a 'through-fare' or a 'published fare'.
 
a) A 'through-fare' is where you will be in the main airline's care throughout. You change planes, but your bags are checked all the way through to your final destination. 

b) A 'published fare' ticket is completely seperate from your onward ticket from London. It is usually cheaper than a through-fare but will need to be paid for and issued as soon as it is booked. This can be a problem if your tour has not yet reached minimum numbers. On 'published fares' neither airline is aware that you have connecting flights, so Exodus is responsible for timing your connection, not the airlines involved. The tickets are also usually non changeable and non refundable.

Pros Cons
  • Depending on the fare type, Exodus or the airline is responsible for flight connections.
  • Through fare tickets can be expensive.
  • On a published fare, tickets must be issued immediately; tickets on published fares can be very difficult to change if onward flight times change; bags are not checked though to your final destination.
  • Published fares are non-refundable.

 

3. Booking some or all of the flights yourself

You can also book connecting air travel yourself, either to London, or all the way to the start point. There may be certain airlines or routes we don't have access to, so this is always an option. However, if you make your own travel arrangements you become liable for any delays, cancellations or missed connections, and Exodus is not required to offer refunds if you have trouble reaching the start of your trip.

Pros Cons
  • You might find cheaper fares, or routes not available to Exodus.
  • You are responsible for any delays or missed connections, and the cost of the tour is not protected should you miss your flight be cancelled.

 

 Notes on transfer arrangements

Sometimes it is possible to travel on a different airline to the group flight from London. Where this is the case, we need to think about ensuring you meet up with the group with minimum extra cost and hassle.

  • On certain trips, it is easy to arrive on a different flight and still meet the group at the hotel with time in hand. We can usually arrange private transfers (at extra cost) or offer advice on taking a taxi to the start hotel.
  • On other trips (especially in Europe), the transfer meets the group flight and then travels some distance to the first night's accommodation. Where this is the case, our Sales team will try to arrange flights that arrive before (and depart after) the group. However, we do have to make it clear in your final documentation that if your flights are delayed, the transfer cannot wait for you. While Exodus or our local operators will do what we can to help you reach the start point of the tour, any additional costs must be paid by the client. 

 

Next steps? 

Call our Sales team on: 0203 733 0698

Email your query: [email protected]

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