Colombia is an incredible country but one that must be earned. Even the most seasoned travelers should follow this short list of things to keep in mind.  

1. Sunscreen and sunglasses 

Bogota is the third highest capital in the world (2640 meters) behind La Paz ( Bolivia) and Quito (Ecuador). At altitude the sun beats down. UV rays reach index 11 against 8 on average on the Côte d’Azur. The Caribbean sun on the Atlantic coast spares no one and a good sunscreen never prevents a beautiful tan, quite the contrary.

2. Walking shoes 

In Colombia, there are a large number of routes for walkers, from the most difficult treks (Ciudad Perdida / Caño Cristales) walks in small colonial villages (Villa de Leyva /Mompox). A good pair of walking shoes is never too much. Quick Tip: If you are weight limited, carry the shoes on the plane or stuff them with socks in your suitcase to save space.

3. Adapter

If there is one thing you should not forget, it is the adapter to charge your smartphones or cameras without which you will not be able to capture your memories. Remember to buy it before your trip because the prices at airports are exorbitant. If you have some space left, a power strip is always useful for long trips. Tip: don’t burden yourself with devices that work with more than 140 V.

4. Comfortable backpack

In difficult trails, you can forget your luggage and opt for a backpack. Choosing the right backpack is important because when you have to carry it for several hours, it is better to feel comfortable. A bag with interior pockets improves storage.

5. Essential clothing

Colombia is home to some of the most beautiful beaches in the world. It would be sad not to be able to fully enjoy the crystal clear waters of the Caribbean at Cartagena de Indias a>, or the white sands of the Tayrona National Park beaches. Think about your swimsuit. The nights of Medellin and Bogota are famous for being very festive. A small pair of dress shoes and a jacket will be appropriate, although the dress codes are not very restrictive. The nights in the capital cool off quickly and a very fine little down jacket does not weigh very much in a suitcase. Think of the small scarf.

6. Mosquito repellent 

The Colombian landscapes are very varied. A tropical climate dominates most of the country: the‘ a>Amazon, the Caribbean coast and Pacific. These regions favor the strong presence of mosquitoes. You should not neglect to protect yourself from it, in particular to avoid serious illnesses such as yellow fever or malaria. On the other hand in the mountains – Bogota – nothing to fear from insects!

7. Carnet international de vaccination

It is mandatory to be vaccinated against yellow fever to enter the Tayrona National Park. It is therefore essential to travel with your vaccination booklet that the specialized center will have provided you. It is advisable to be vaccinated against Hepatitis A and Typhoid and even rabies in extreme cases if you plan to travel in the countryside and parts of the Amazon.  These last three vaccinations are not useful in the big cities.

8. Some medicines 

Il est parfois difficile de reconnaître les boîtes de médicaments qui nous sont inconnus. En Colombie, les médicaments se vendent dans les « droguerias ». Pour les petites urgences, il est nécessaire de partir avec une petite pharmacie.

9. A raincoat and rain boots 

One imagines Colombia to be hot and blue. This is the case on the coasts but in Bogota when it rains it is better to find a shelter quickly. A small raincoat and rain boots will be of great help.

10. Travel guides with an integrated map  

Bien que l’organisation des rues – par bloc – en Colombie permette de se repérer facilement, une carte reste indispensable. Un bon guide de voyage vous mettra sur la piste de bonnes adresses et la carte vous assurera d’arriver à destination. Les Colombiens sont très accueillants et prendront le temps de vous orienter et d’échanger quelques mots. Ils mettent un point d’honneur à bien accueillir les touristes. Mais sachez qu’il est très important pour eux de les aborder en espagnol – même avec des mots simples – plutôt qu’en anglais, la langue des gringos. De petits guides des discussions de tous les jours se trouvent facilement sur internet à des prix très abordables.


Dans la plupart des grandes villes vous pourrez payer en carte de crédit mais il arrive encore que certains commerces ou restaurants ne fonctionnent qu’avec de l’ « efectivo ». Vous devrez donc retirer de l’argent aux « cajeros ». Il est toujours plus sûr de ne pas se promener avec une grande quantité d’argent. Si c’est le cas une petite pochette ventrale est très pratique et invisible.

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