Enjoy an awesome mix of city, mountains, and rural coffee country on our new custom, private 8-Day Colombia Los Nevados Trekking Tour that you can start any day of the year!
The trek has a number of days at over 12,467 feet (3,800 meters) above sea level and we consider it physically challenging (like the Inca Trail). Walking can be adapted, however, to suit a traveler’s needs and pace, that is, increased or decreased in difficulty. Your baggage, food, and equipment will be carried by mules for the duration of the trek; you need only carry your day pack. A logistics manager, chef, and trek leader make up the trek team with additional helpers depending on group size.
Camps will be made ready for when you arrive and the trek has been designed so you typically arrive for lunch, with the rest of the afternoon to relax and take part in further activities like optional day hikes. 3-season Marmot tents, warm 0ºF Marmot sleeping bags, Thermarests, and sleeping bag liners are all provided for you along with lighting and a toilet tent.
Depending on a given location, food may be served either in a support structure or a mess tent. All meals on trek are included as well as in remote locations, such as the Flora and Fauna Sanctuary Otun-Quimbaya.
For your city stays, we have chosen refined 3-star hotels with excellent service and ratings in both Bogotá and Cartagena. These can easily be changed for 5-star options on request. In the cities, most meals are up to you, since there are so many choices to pick from, but we will help with transportation if necessary, so you can experience some local restaurants.
Day 1: Arrive Bogotá, transfer, and overnight
Welcome to Colombia! Upon your arrival at the Bogotá airport, we will greet you and transfer you to your hotel. For central hotels, the trip will take up to an hour to drive. At your hotel, you will check-in. The balance of your day is at your leisure.
Optional activity: You can visit Cerro Monserrate in the afternoon for panoramic views over the city.
Day 2: Free morning in Bogotá, travel to Salento (Coffee region)
You will have a free morning in Bogotá.
Optional Bogotá tours:
- Paloquemao market tour: You can leave the hotel
at 7:30 am for a morning guided visit to the Paloquemao market. We will walk around the market and sample local foods.
- Bogotá walking tour: You can go on a walking tour and visit the Gold Museum, the Botero Museum, the Plaza de Bolivar, and La Candelaria. Optional lunch during this tour.
In the afternoon, we will transfer you back to El Dorado airport (BOG) for an afternoon flight (for example, AV9417 17:01/18:01 to Pereira (PEI). In Pereira, we will meet you after you pick up your bags and we will transfer you to your hotel (approximately 75 minutes). This evening will be at your leisure in Salento. You may want to play “Tejo,” an explosive game that is unique to Colombia or choose to walk around the town on your own.
Day 3: Optional tours around beautiful Salento
You have several various optional activities available to you today:
- Day at leisure in Salento: You can enjoy the local atmosphere, explore the many restaurants and shops, and/or simply take a stroll around the town square.
- Walking coffee tour near Salento: You can take an approximately 5-kilometer walk to a traditional coffee hacienda to learn about the process from start to finish.
- Mountain biking in the coffee region: You can bike various routes of varying difficulties, landscapes, ecosystems, and concepts.
- Visit the Otun Quimbaya Wildlife Sanctuary (National park): You can visit the park for a day’s wildlife watching – Red Howler-Monkeys, excellent birdlife, and much more.
- Hot springs in Santa Rosa de Cabal: You can pay a full-day visit to the legendary hot springs of Santa Rosa de Cabal, with transfer times being a total of around 4 hours for the day leaving from Salento. If you select this option ahead of time, you can choose to spend the night in Pereira or the hot springs.
In the evening, you will meet your trek leader to go over the trek, discuss options for starting times, and get local dinner restaurant recommendations.
Day 4: Trekking
This morning, you should plan to leave the hotel at 7:30 am. We will transfer you to the Cocora Valley (7,897 ft) and the landscape viewpoint/trail head (30-minute drive). We will start our trek, around 8:15 am, to La Argentina hacienda campsite (11,404ft). Total trek: 11 kilometers, 4-5 hours, medium level walk.
On our way, we will stop off at a great vista for a snack and rest. You will have time to observe the unusual Sub-Paramo flora and high Andean basin of the River Cardenas. You should expect an early afternoon arrival at the campsite where lunch will be waiting for you.
You will have time in the afternoon to explore the local surroundings and other trails that head deep into the forest. Your guide will be happy to discuss the geology, history, and biology of the mountains, whether you choose to rest in camp or head out on a guided day hike. You will have dinner at the campsite.
Day 5: Trekking
Today, we will start our trek to El Jordan village around 8:00 am. Today’s trek is a difficult graded walk with steep switchbacks, across broad expanses of grassy paramo. We will reach a high point of 13,688 feet today before arriving at El Jordan farm. Total trek: ~13km.
We will have a late lunch at the campsite. You will have the afternoon and evening at leisure in El Jordan. We will have dinner at camp.
Optional activity: You can walk to look for elusive mountain tapirs. You may also choose to fish.
Day 6: Trekking
We will start our trek to La Pastora refuge (8,057ft) at about 8:00 am. Our trek today is a medium grade walk with switchbacks on the descent and large rocks on the trail. We recommend you wear good boots with reasonable ankle support for this trek since rocks can be wet at times. Total trek: 14.5km, ~200m ascent.
We will eat a late lunch at La Pastora refuge. You will have the afternoon at your leisure. We will end the day with dinner, stories around the fire, and some good wine.
Optional afternoon activities: You can visit huge waterfalls, go birdwatching, and explore the refuge.
Day 7: Finish trek, optional wildlife sanctuary visit, overnight Pereira
After breakfast, we will start the trek to El Cedral (6,890ft), which is an easy grade walk along an old horse trail. You should expect rocky conditions and wildlife watching opportunities along the way. We will end up at El Cedral. Total trek: 6.2 kilometers, ~366m descent.
We will transfer you to to the Otun Quimbaya Wildlife Sanctuary for lunch. Later, we will transfer you to your Pereira hotel.
- Early morning walk – You can take an early morning walk (5 am) to look for the endangered and rare Mountain Tapir. You will return to the refuge for breakfast.
- Afternoon guided Sanctuary visit: You can take an afternoon guided visit at the Sanctuary to walk the trails and look for monkeys.
Day 8: Transfer to airport, depart
We will transfer you to the Pereira airport for your departure (typically, to Bogotá, if returning home today) or you may choose to extend your trip to, for example, Cartagena, which is a world-class city. Please let us know if you are interested.