Paisa Tours: Guide to Medellin and Colombia


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Paisa Country (Central Colombia):
Medellin City
Medellin Hotels
El Penol
Antioquia's Oriente
Santa Fe Antioquia
Rio Claro
Coffee Country
Los Nevados Park








Paisa Towns of Antioquia


Various day tours can be made from Medellin to beautiful, peaceful, colonial style towns in Antioquia's countryside. One of the most popular, and immaculately preserved, is Santa Fe de Antioquia. In addition, a Circuito de Oriente tour can visit many towns in one day. Jardin is another lovely small town South of Medellin en route to the Coffee Country.

Circuito de Oriente

An interesting days tour from Medellin is called the "Circuito de Oriente" (or Oriente Circuit). There's numerous small towns (Pueblitos Paisas) and villages that can be visited all at once in a days tour from Medellin. With your own car, just get a map and go, alternatively try to organise such a tour locally in Medellin.

The scenery is very pretty, and everyone in this rural part of Antioquia seems to live in a stunning flower-clad hacienda. Any of the following towns would be of interest to tourists: Rionegro, Carmen de Viboral, Salto de Tequendamita, San Antonio de Pereira, La Ceja and Retiro.

The pick of the bunch is possibly the laid back San Antonio de Pereira, with a beautiful plaza surrounded by open air paisa style cafes great for people watching, especially on the weekend when the town fills up with locals visiting from Medellin. There's a great little shop selling a Garden of Eden's worth of desserts on the main plaza - it's hard to miss (look for the locals scoffing their desserts!). Travel tip: don't park on the main plaza as you'll get an extortionate parking ticket.

Rio Negro is one of the larger towns in the area. The towns main plaza exhibits the Monumento a Jose Maria Cordoba, a local hero from the war of Independence. There's an impressive cathedral overlooking the plaza, and a small museum of religious art.

Carmen de Viboral is just outside of Rionegro and well known for it's hand painted ceramics. A visit to one of the towns ceramic factories might appeal to visitors.

La Ceja is another nearby Paisa town though there's little of interest other than the towns beautiful main plaza - I often take visiting friends here for a drink or few as it's a great place to watch the world go by. 10 km northwest of La Ceja, on the road to Salto de Tequendamita is a beautiful waterfall. The restaurant at the base of the waterfall is pretty poor, so best avoid it.

Also in this region is Truchera Charco Azul, where one can go trout fishing in a rainforest setting. There are a few scenic walks to nearby waterfalls, and you can also stay in some cabanas here. To get to Truchera Charco Azul travel towards the airport (Las Palmas route) and after about 30 minutes you'll see a sign on your right (or email trucheracharcoazul@hotmail.com)

Jardin & Jerico

These two paisa towns are quite similar in many ways -  both are about 2-3 hours South of Medellin, and can be visited on a long full days tour, alternatively there are a few decent hotels in both the towns. These small towns are very beautiful, and full of Paisa architecture and friendly people. There's little to do other than explore the town, hang out in the main Park and meet the friendly local people. The surrounding countryside is beautiful and offers some scenic walks. On the weekends, both Jardin and Jerico can fill up with visitors from Medellin and the surrounding countryside and have a real buzzing atmosphere. Hotels in Jardin include Balcones del Parque and the Hotel Valdivia Plaza.  One km outside of Jardin is the larger hotel Hacienda Balandu, which has a swimming pool.  In Jerico, consider staying at the comfortable hotel Porton Plaza. 


Antioquia:
Paisa Towns of Antioquia
Antioquia's countryside has numerous pretty Paisa towns that can be visited.


Pueblito Paisa, Medellin:
Pueblito Paisa, Medellin
Pueblito Paisa in in Medellin itself.

Tequendamita Waterfall
Tequendamita Waterfall - part of the Circuito Oriente.
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