On this culturally rich 7-day tour, you'll explore the historic and cosmopolitan side of Bogotá before heading north through the scenic Colombian highlands towards two of the country's most photogenic cobblestoned towns. Here, you’ll visit the underground salt mines, bike the Suarez Canyon, and finally explore the Spanish Colonial wonder that is Barichara — oozing with charm — before heading back to the capital's exciting restaurants and nightlife.

Highlights

  • Explore cobblestoned towns of Villa de Leyva & Barichara
  • Tast the capital, Bogotá's exciting restaurants and nightlife
  • Explore the majestic Suarez canyon on a bike

Brief Itinerary 

Day  Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in Bogotá Bogotá
Day 2 Bogotá City Tour Bogotá
Day 3 Zipaquira: Salt Mine & Salt Cathedral tour Villa de Leyva
Day 4 Tour of Villa de Leyva Barichara
Day 5 Suarez Canyon Biking Tour Barichara
Day 6 Tour of Barichara  Bogotá
Day 7 Depart Bogotá    

Detailed Itinerary 

Day 1: Arrive in Bogotá

Bogotá skyline view

Welcome to Bogotá!
A driver will meet you at the airport for transportation to the hotel, your home base for the next few days.

Explore by foot
Bogotá is on the rise in terms of gastronomy and culture, so spend your free time discovering this vibrant Andean capital by foot. Explore the cobblestone streets through the La Candelaria neighborhood where trendy restaurants and colonial-era landmarks are located.

While here, don't forget to explore the excellent museums, shopping, and street food options ranging from empanadas to exotic fruit salads.

Day 2: Bogotá City Tour

Boliva square in Bogotá

After breakfast, continue to explore the city by yourself or with a guide. Here are some things that you should see:

  • Stroll through Bogota’s lively streets for walled graffiti art, coffee cafes, bookstores, art galleries, and historic plazas and statues while learning about the fascinating political history of Colombia’s capital.
  • Take the cable car to Monserrat for one of the best views of the city.
  • Visit La Concordia market to learn about fruits, vegetables, and spices used in local cuisine.
  • Spend a few hours gazing at pre-Hispanic works at the Gold Museum.
  • Check out the local music scene with live bands and street festivals.

Day 3: Zipaquira: Salt Mine Tour -> Transfer to Villa de Leyva

Underground salt cathedral

Your journey north of the capital starts at Colombia's famous underground Salt Cathedral. While in the area, you'll also head to the Nemocón Salt Mine, thirty minutes outside of Zipaquira. Here, 80 meters underground, are a collection of immaculately preserved tunnels where eight million tons of salt were extracted between 1816 and 1968.  The various chambers off the main routes show the history of salt mining amidst spectacular atmospheric light effects, with no less than 28 mirrors.

Your route will pass through Raquira, known as “the pottery capital of Colombia”. This village features brightly painted facades where you can watch pottery being made with numerous craft shops selling items like ponchos, handbags, woodcarvings, and jewelry. If visiting on a Sunday, you will see a market in full swing!

Continue driving north through the highlands. Tonight you'll stay in Villa de Leyva, one of the most beautiful colonial villages in Colombia with cobblestone streets and whitewashed buildings.

Day 4: Tour of Villa de Leyva / Transfer to Barichara

Cobblestone streets in Villa de Leyva

After breakfast, you'll have the opportunity to learn more about the preserved colonial town of Villa de Leyva. This guided half-day tour covers important sites like Casa Antonio Nariño et Casa Antonio Ricaurte, El Carmen Church, and Plaza Mayor.

In the afternoon, you will drive north towards Barichara, which is considered one of the most beautiful cities of Colombia.

Day 5: Suarez Canyon Biking Tour

Barichara cityscape

The spectacular village of Barichara is located in the northern-central department of Santander, surrounded by beautiful craggy mountains and powerful waterfalls and rivers. In the morning, you'll explore the region by bike, starting in the Cabrera area, which is 1800 meters above sea level. You'll descend downhill to the bottom of the majestic Suarez Canyon. There will be opportunities to stop for photos along the way and bring your bathing suit in case you want to cool off in the river. 

On the way back to Barichara, stop for an authentic Colombian lunch.

Day 6: Tour of Barichara -> Transfer to Bogotá

Cathedral of Barichara Santander

Today is your chance to get to know Barichara, considered one of the most beautiful Spanish Colonial villages in Colombia, on a more intimate level. Walk along the atmospheric streets, visit the ornate churches (Cathedral of Immaculate Conception and Santa Barbara Church), and discover local workshops including stone carvers and a cigar factory.

Your tour will end at the watchtower, which offers a splendid panoramic view over the Rio Suarez and the Cordillera de los Cobardes. Enjoy lunch in town, as you will be flying out in the afternoon to Bogotá.

Day 7: Depart Bogotá

Graffiti walls in Bogotá

It's time to say farewell to Colombia! Enjoy your last moments in Bogotá with a leisurely breakfast, city stroll, and/or souvenir shopping.  A representative will meet you at your hotel and drive you to the airport for your return flight home.

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We had a really excellent experience in Colombia, and with KimKim in particular. One thing we appreciated immediately was that our drivers were always punctual and pleasant, and their vehicles were in great shape. We started off in Bogota and had a wonderful bike tour led by Daniel Felipe. We were particularly interested in street art, and it turns out he is a street artist himself, so it was a perfect match. The next day we had an equally great tour to Monserrate led by Sharon. We then flew to Salento (in the coffee-growing region), which was the highlight of our trip. We stayed at Reserva el Cairo, which we can't recommend highly enough. We spent 2 full days there. On the first, we did a mountain bike tour of the wax palms through Salento Cycling (not through Kimkim), which was absolutely fabulous. The next day we had our best tour ever (provided by Kimkim), which was a tour of several local towns with our guide David. We learned to grow and prepare coffee, saw incredible beauty, and hung out in some really gorgeous (non-touristy) little towns. Loved it! The last part of our trip was in Cartagena. This was not our favorite, due to the heat, multitude of tourists, and extremely obvious income inequality. However, we recognize that many people really enjoy the hot coastal environment and that our going there and not loving it was predictable. We did, however, learn a lot about the history of the place, and really enjoyed our tour with Nestor despite our cutting it a bit short due to our discomfort in the heat. It was a relief for us to get back to Bogota, where we all agreed we could spend a lot more time. Overall, we loved Colombia and feel like we want to come back, spending more time in Bogota, the coffee region, and other areas that we haven't visited yet. I also was very pleased with KimKim's services, which were exactly what we needed and perfectly executed.