Republic of Colombia | República de Colombia
Colombia is a beautiful country: from world class cities such as Bogotá and Medellín, to the exotic and untamed jungles near the coasts and along the Amazon, Colombia is a country that should be experienced at least once. Though there is a lingering bad reputation from years of the dangerous drug trade and violence, Colombia is relatively safe to visit, especially if you limit yourself to the major cities. Travel in rural areas remains advised against, as there is still a large guerrilla presence in these areas, namely the FARC and ELN guerrillas. Food in Colombia is exotic yet cheap, and each region offers fruits and delicacies hard to find anywhere else.
Colombians know how to have fun. Dancing is a part of their cultural ancestry, and they do it with few inhibitions. The nightlife in Colombia’s major cities is known for being very exciting, and these easily approachable people seem to become even more approachable at night. Colombians are proud of their culture, and many textiles and artifacts from the more rural natives can be found for sale at a very good price, an excellent souvenir option.
Colombia has a bad reputation that should have died out several years earlier. Many foreigners perceive Colombia to be full of dangerous drug cartels and violence that is out of control. However, this is far from the truth. Colombia might have had its share of problems back in the day, but its major cities have been very successful in stomping out many of the problems. If you don’t want to run into a FARC rebel cell, simply stay away from the Amazon region and other areas which are not so densely populated.
Whatever your heart desires, you are sure to be able to find it here. Posh 5-star accommodations and hostels that offer shared dorms with 10 beds each, elegant cuisine to food cooked on a makeshift grill mounted on a stolen shopping cart served by street vendors, it can virtually all be had in Colombia. As a former tourism slogan used to campaign: The only risk is wanting to stay.