Colombia Holidays, Events, Climate and Sightseeing

Holidays and events

Public holidays

Date Holiday Meaning
January 1 Día de la Independencia New Year
6th January Epifanía Epiphany
19th March San Jose Saint Joseph
March 24 Jueves Santo Maundy Thursday
25th March Viernes Santo Good Friday
1st of May Día del Trabajo Labor Day
May 4 Ascension del Señor Ascension of Christ
25. May Corpus Christ Corpus Christi
2th of June Sagrado Corazón National holiday
20th of July Día de la Independencia independence Day
August 7 Batalla de Boyacá National Day of the Battle of Boyacá
15th of August Asuncion de la Virgen National holiday
October 12 Día de la Raza Race day
November 1 Día de Todos los Santos All Saints Day
November 11 Independencia de Cartagena Independence from Cartagena
December 8 Inmaculada Concepción National Day of the Immaculate Conception
25 December Navidad Christmas

Source: Countryaah – Colombia Holidays

If a Christian holiday falls on a weekday with the exception of Easter and Christmas, the day off is shifted to the following Monday.

Sporting events

Colombia is known for its international level in both football and cycling. In June 2000 the sport “Tejo” was declared a national sport by the Colombian Congress. This sport is a modern version of the Indian game Turmequé. In the Tagus, a metal ball is thrown into a circle containing bags filled with black powder. If a player pops one of the bags, he wins. If no bag is hit, the one closest to the center wins. A football association was founded in 1964 as the “Federación de Fútbol de Colombia (Fedebol)” with the support of FIFA. The first cycle race in stages in South America was held in Colombia. Colombian racing cyclists are regularly successful in the Tour de France.

Colombia: climate

Travel times

The first months of the dry or rainy season in December and January or May to July are pleasant times to travel. However, the tourist locations are also very popular with Colombians at this time of year. Towards the end of the dry season the land is withered and at the end of the rainy season the tropical storms rage. Floods are not uncommon. Be careful in the highlands, because it can get extremely cold there at night.

Climate table

The following table shows a range of climate data for the country. It should be noted, however, that the climatic conditions in different regions of the country can differ considerably from each other and thus also from the values shown, of course especially at high altitudes. The table therefore only provides a general rough overview.

Month Average number of rainy days Mean maximum temperatures in (°C) Mean minimum temperatures in (°C)
January 03-04 19-20 08 to 09
February 06-07 21-22 08 to 09
March 10-11 19-20 10-12
April 12-14 19-21 11-13
May 18-20 19-21 11-13
June 16-18 18-20 11-13
July 15-17 18-20 10-11
August 11-12 18-20 10-10
September 10-11 19-21 08 – 09
October 10-11 19-21 09-10
November 06 – 07 20-22 09-10
December 04 – 05 20-222 08-10

Colombia: Sightseeing

UNESCO World Heritage Sites

Qhapaq Ñan

The approximately 6,000 km long Andean road Qhapaq Ñan connected the city of Quito in the north of the Inca Empire in today’s Ecuador with the city of Santiago in today’s Chile in the south.

The road almost always runs at an altitude of around 3.5 km. Along the road the Inca set up checkpoints, set up storage facilities and there were hostels for travelers to stay overnight.

The Inca built suspension bridges to cross ravines and rivers and cut steps in the rocks when it was necessary to get ahead. The Andean Strait goes through six different countries, these are:

Argentina, Bolivia, Colombia, Ecuador, Chile and Peru.

The road touches the dry Maranon forest, runs through the rainforest of Chile and crosses valleys that connect the highlands of the 4,000 m high Andes and the tropical Amazon rainforest.

However, the road is threatened with disintegration, so only small parts are currently to be walked on. This includes the Sacred Valley from Cusco to Machu Picchu. In Ecuador there is the Ingapirca, an important Inca site.

It is about 50 km from the city of Azogues, and in Bolivia is Tiahuanaco – a pre-Inca ruin near the city of Tiawanacu.

The Inca-Andean Road is transnational and was added to the list of UNESCO World Heritage Sites for the countries concerned in 2014

Port, fortifications and monuments of the city of Cartagena

The city of Cartagena is located on the Caribbean in a wide bay and is covered by offshore islands.

After Sir Francis Drake raided the city in 1572, fortifications were built, such as: B. the Castillo de San Felipe de Barajas to protect the city. The privateer Sir Francis Drake is considered to be one of the first to abhor the slave trade. The entrance to the bay is guarded by two forts, which had absolute control over incoming ships. After the city had been secured in this way, it was practically impossible to conquer it. The fortresses are exemplary of the military architecture. 16th and 17th centuries. In Cartagena even the churches look more like fortifications than places of worship. In the old town you can visit the cathedral, the Bolivar square with the Palace of the Inquisition, a colonial-style building from 1770. The houses are brightly painted and well-kept.

The port, fortifications and architectural monuments of the city of Cartagena were added to the UNESCO World Heritage List in 1984

Los Katíos National Park

The Los Katíos National Park is located in the Chocó department between the border with Panama and the west bank of the Río Atrato. The area of the protected area is approx. 720 km². In the reserve are also the Tumaradó swamps, the Tendal and Tilupo waterfalls, which are 100 m high. The park crosses the border with the Darién National Park in Panama. The biodiversity of animals and plants is very large. The local precious woods had to be protected because entire forests were cut down by the logging.

The following animals live here: Pumas, jaguars, monkeys and also endangered animals such as American crocodiles, forest dogs, anteaters can still be found here.

In 1501 this region was discovered by the Spanish. The Kunas Indian tribe lived here, but they fought with the Katío-Embera tribe. Indians from the Kunas still live in Panama. The Katio-Embera, who continue to live in the area, organized a vote in 2009 as to whether or not a mining project should be carried out in their area. The survey ended unanimously with NO. For the population group, the building would be the end of their customs, rites and culture, because the mine is on the Cara de Perro mountain, which is sacred to them. The sewage from the mine would poison their river water and rob them of their habitat.

The national park was added to the UNESCO World Heritage List in 1994

Historic Center of Santa Cruz de Mompox

The city of Mompox is located in the province of Bolívar southeast of Cartagena on the lower reaches of the Magdalena River. The city was founded in 1537 with the help of Indians and was named after the chief of the helping tribe. The three churches La Concepción, San Augustin and Santa Barbara in the old town were built in the middle of the 16th to the beginning of the 17th century. They are well preserved and well worth a visit. The old town of Mompox is built in colonial style and the old buildings are very well maintained. Alexander von Humboldt visited the city in 1801. The historic center of Santa Cruz de Mompox was added to the list of UNESCO World Heritage Sites in 1996

Tierradentro Archaeological Park The Tierradentro

archaeological park is located in the south of the country in the Andes (Cordellieren Central). There are numerous tombs underground in the area, which are divided into “death rooms”. Geometric and colorful figures are drawn on the walls of the “death rooms” as well as wall paintings depicting life before the Spanish conquest. The grave complex can be reached via uniquely built stairs. There are also shaft graves about 5 m deep in which urns have been found. Golden jewelry was discovered as an urn. Stone human figures stand on the tombs. The Tierradentro Archaeological Park was added to the UNESCO World Heritage List in 1995

San Agustín Archaeological Park

The Archaeological Park of San Agustín is located in the department of Huila. Around 500 giant statues – made of stone – can be admired there. Many of these statues belonged to the graves of the tribes who lived there. The statues show burial rites that were practiced at that time. There are four hills in the park with huge stone statues and tombs. There are also 39 statues in the forest, the completion of which had to be based on an excellent concept. From the graves, statues and sarcophagi it can be concluded that the peoples who once lived there were highly developed and one could conclude that they made a living from agriculture. In the years 1300 to 1400, foreigners forced the population to leave the country. The most important statues are: “The double me”,

The San Agustín Archaeological Park was added to the UNESCO World Heritage List in 1995

Malpelo Island and Nature Reserve

The island of Malpelo is located in the eastern Pacific and is part of the Departamento de Cauca – about 500 km from the motherland of Colombia. It is about 1,600 m long and a maximum of 730 m wide. The highest point is 300 m. There are numerous smaller islands around the island, all of which are part of the protected area. The islands together have an area of approx. 2.5 km². The sea is rich in species, and sharks are particularly common here. The island is uninhabited except for the “National Fleet of Colombia” stationed here.

The island and the Malpelo nature reserve were added to the UNESCO World Heritage List in 2006

Cultural coffee landscape

The town of Chinchiná is located in the central Cordilleras at an altitude of approx. 1,300 m in a picturesque valley and is very typical of the region that grows coffee. In the city there is a coffee experiment farm that is unique in the world. The road expansion to transport the coffee to all parts of the country is optimal. The active volcano Nevada del Ruiz is close to the city. The name Chinchiná was given by the local Indians.

The Chinchiná coffee culture landscape was added to the list of UNESCO World Heritage Sites in 2011.

Chiribiquete National Park

More than 75,000 rock paintings were between 20,000 BC. BC and originated today. In addition, huge sandstone plateaus with steep walls (“Tepuys”) characterize the Chiribiquete National Park in the north-west of the Colombian Amazon region.

Because of these unique natural and cultural heritage sites, the largest nature reserve in Colombia was declared a UNESCO World Nature and World Heritage Site in 2018.

Major cities in the country


Founded in 1533, Cartagena has long been the most important city in Colombia. This is where the country’s mineral resources were shipped to the Spanish galleons. And here was one of the most important trading centers in the new world. The mighty fortress ring, which still surrounds the old town, is accessible. In 1994 the city was declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO.

Ciudad Perdida

The “lost city” on the northern slope of the Sierra de Santa Marta was the largest city of the “Tairona culture”. The town was called “Teyune” by the residents. The conquerors cruelly destroyed the city in 1599 after years of fighting. The ruined city has hundreds of terraces on which the buildings stood. 200 terraces have been reconstructed.

San Agustin

In the middle of the 18th century, Spaniards in search of gold near the source of the Magdalena discovered ruins of an ancient Indian culture from the 1st to the 8th century. The Indians of San Agustin traded with the peoples on the other side of the Amazon and those on the Pacific. They left about 500 stone statues up to seven meters high, graves with gold gifts and many puzzles about their history.

Santa Cruz de Mompós

Since 1995 the well-preserved colonial town of Santa Cruz de Mompós on the lower reaches of the Magdalena has also been a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Founded in 1540, the city lost its importance in the 19th century because the large modern steamers sailed up the river on a different route.

The bathing resorts of Choco are also recommended.

Special buildings

In Cartagena

The court of the Inquisition, in which unimaginable atrocities took place in honor of God, dates back to the 16th century.

Capilla del Sagrario

in Bogota.

Capitolio Nacional

This building in Bogota is built in the classicism style.

Alcaldía de Bogotá

This building in Bogota is built in the classicism style, which has a clear French influence.


Museo Nacional

The National Museum of Colombia in Bogota.

Museo de Arte Colonial

This museum is located in Bogota.

Museum “Museo del Oro in Bogota”

This museum is located in Bogota.


Teatro Colón

This Columbus theater is located in the capital Bogotá.

Teatro Nacional

The National Theater of Colombia is located in Bogota, the capital of the country.

Teatro “Jorge Eliécer Gaitán”

Theater of the City of Bogotá

Teatro “La Candelaria”

This theater is located in Bogota.

Teatro Municipal

This theater in Cali is built in the style of Creole classicism.




Cathedral (16th century)

Santo Domingo Church in Cartagena

(16th century)

Jesuit convent of San Pedro Claver in Cartagena

(17th century)

Cathedral of the Archdiocese of Medellin

The cathedral in Medellin was completed in 1931. The Romanesque building towers over the city and is certainly its main attraction.

Important universities

Universidad Nacional de Colombia

The National University of Colombia is the oldest Colombian university. It was founded in 1867 with 6 courses at that time. The main campus of the university is in Bogota, but the university also has other locations such as Medellín, Palmira, Manizales, Arauca, and Leticia. Approximately 45,000 students are currently studying at the largest university in the country. The following faculties are available at this university:

  • Humanities
  • Economics
  • Fine arts
  • law Sciences
  • medicine
  • Agricultural Sciences
  • Engineering

Universidad Pedagógica Nacional

The National Pedagogical University in Colombia’s capital Bogotá was founded in 1955. About 7,000 students are currently studying at the university. The following faculties are available at this university:

  • Humanities
  • education
  • Fine arts
  • Science and technology
  • Sports science

Coffee growing areas

The growing areas for Colombian coffee are in the highlands of Colombia. In the coffee triangle – which is formed from the three departments “Caldas”, “Quindio” and “Risaralda” – supposedly the best coffee in the world is supposed to grow. In the three departments around 500,000 people are directly or indirectly involved in coffee cultivation and processing – in the whole of Colombia there are around 2 million people. The coffee farmers have organized themselves in the “Federation Nacional de Cafeteros de Colombia”, which is supposed to represent their interests.

In the coffee-growing areas, the meter-high coffee trees with their hand-sized leaves and red coffee blossoms shape large parts of the landscape. Tradition, family and coffee have belonged together here for generations. However, many young people are leaving the region to take up other more attractive jobs.

One of the well-growing types of coffee here is Caturra coffee. The coffee plants were brought to South America by the French, Dutch and Portuguese at the beginning of the 18th century. Around 2.7 million coffee trees grow in Colombia, around two thirds of which grow on large modern plantations. Colombia is also increasingly opening up to coffee tourism. Therefore, the visitors can follow the path of coffee from the coffee seedling to the roasted coffee and also live on the plantations. The visitor learns, for example, that the seeds need up to 65 days before they start to germinate. And after about eight months they can then be planted on the plantation, where they will bear their first fruits after about 18 months. The red coffee beans are harvested twice a year, in April and May as well as in October and November.

So far, the roasting process has mostly taken place in consumer countries, such as Germany. But the producing countries are increasingly starting to roast their coffee themselves – this brings among other things higher profits.

Natural beauties

La Piedra Del Peñol

This monolith is located around 1 km within the city limits of the city of Guatapé – around 90 km northeast of Medellín in Antioquia. The monolith was created about 70 million years ago and rises about 220 m high from the area.

You can hike to the top of the mountain via a staircase with around 650 steps. Above the visitor will find a snack bar but especially an almost unique overview of the surroundings.

Los Kaitos National Park

Los Nevados National Park

San Andres Archipelago

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