This adventurous 7-day itinerary starts in the exciting capital of Bogotá before delving into the Amazon rainforest (by charter plane) to get to one of the hardest-to-reach places in the country. This wild location will be your home for the next three nights, and the itinerary combines hiking and boating around two dramatic canyons, plenty of wildlife viewing, and interactions with two local tribes. Return to "civilization" and spend your last night in Villavicencio dancing alongside Colombian cowboys.

Highlights

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Brief Itinerary

Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in Bogotá - Explore the City Bogotá
Day 2 Bogotá - Transfer to Villavicencio Villavicencio
Day 3 Villavicencio - Transfer to Araracuara Canyon Araracuara Canyon
Day 4 Angostura Canyon Boat Trip Araracuara Canyon
Day 5 Chiribiquete Park: Overnight Adventure Amazon Rainforest
Day 6 Return to Villavicencio Villavicencio
Day 7 Flight to Bogotá - Depart Colombia  

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1: Arrive in Bogotá - Explore the City

Plaza Bolívar, in La Candelaria, Bogotá
Plaza Bolívar, in La Candelaria, Bogotá

Welcome to Bogotá! A driver will meet you at the airport and transport you to your hotel.

Colombia's biggest city has culture to spare, and its regional gastronomy has made it a global foodie destination. You'll have ample free time to explore this Andean capital on foot. Start with the cobblestone streets of the La Candelaria neighborhood, where trendy restaurants and colonial-era landmarks are located. You'll also find excellent museums, shopping, and street food ranging from empanadas to exotic fruit salads. 

(Optional add-on.) Depending on what time you arrive, you can experience Bogotá's local history and culture by taking a tour with an English-speaking guide.

Day 2: Bogotá - Transfer to Villavicencio

Nature around Villavicencio
Nature around Villavicencio

A three-hour transfer from Bogotá, the city of Villavicencio is where the Andes meet the plains (La Puerta al Llano). This scenic drive will meander past bridges, through tunnels, and around mountains, so keep your camera close. 

Depending on when you arrive, take the afternoon to explore Villavicencio. Visit the spacious Parque de Los Fundadores (Park of the Founders) for some peace and quiet before the next leg of your journey. If you get there early enough, choose from a range of organized activities in the area such as hiking, rafting, canyoning, horseback riding, or even paragliding.

Day 3: Villavicencio - Transfer to Araracuara Canyon

Araracuara Canyon is located in the Amazon rainforest
Araracuara Canyon is located in the Amazon rainforest

This distinct excursion starts with a chartered plane that takes you high above the mountains into the mystical Araracuara Canyon, in the Amazon rainforest. This was once the home to an infamous jungle penal colony (it operated from 1938 to 1971). Today its dramatic canyon walls and running river are an example of Colombia's exotic natural beauty.

Upon arrival, you will cross the river by boat and check into a small hotel. The next two days will be dedicated to exploring the Araracuara Canyon and the surrounding areas by boat and foot. You will fish with the locals, hike through the rainforest, discover incredible petroglyphs on the canyon walls, and interact with the Witoto and Antoke tribes.

Day 4: Angostura Canyon Boat Trip

Green macaws thrive in this region
Green macaws thrive in this region

Today, you'll take a boat ride from Aruaruara to another canyon: the Angostura Canyon. It's located several miles above the Araraucuar, in Colombia’s largest park, Chiribiquete National Park. Enjoy the dramatic views of this deep canyon and interact with a Witoto tribesman to learn about the legend of Angostura and Colombia’s most infamous penitentiary.

Day 5: Chiribiquete Park: Overnight Adventure

Waterfall in the rainforest
Waterfall in the rainforest

Enjoy Chiribiquete Park. Due to the park’s size (10,700 square miles) and isolated location, this is one of the more unexplored areas of the country. The park includes the Serranía de Chiribiquete mountains and surrounding lowlands, which are covered by tropical forest.

Along the two main rivers that flow through the heart of the park, there are several waterfalls cascading from the top of the rock masses, which form rapids of exceptional beauty. If that's not enough, the lowlands of Chiribiquete have one of the highest rates of plant diversity in northern Amazonia. Tonight you'll stay in an indigenous community.

Day 6: Return to Villavicencio

Villavicencio
Villavicencio

Today, you will return to Villavicencio and stay overnight. If you didn't have an opportunity to explore the city the first time around, take the afternoon to wander its streets. Enjoy the pretty fountains, sculptures, and parks, as well as the 19th-century cathedral.  

No matter what you do, you should end the day (and the trip) with one attraction that draws visitors far and wide—the renowned Rumba at Los Capachos nightclub, where you can dance with real Colombian cowboys.

Day 7: Flight to Bogotá - Depart Colombia

The view of Bogotá from atop Cerro Monserrate
The view of Bogotá from atop Cerro Monserrate

It's time to say goodbye to Colombia! Today you will fly back to Bogotá to connect with your international flight home.

Map

Map of Colombia's Amazon Rainforest & Canyons - 7 Days
Map of Colombia's Amazon Rainforest & Canyons - 7 Days