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TLDR? You should plan to stay in Jardin for at least 3 days to get the full experience.
Jardin is often overlooked when tourists are planning trips outside of Medellin. However, it’s becoming increasingly popular among travelers thanks to its colonial architecture and natural wealth.
If you want to visit Jardin, then you’ll be pleasantly surprised by the number of things to do in this quaint little town. But, with that said, how many days do you need in Jardin?
This guide will give you the perfect itinerary when planning your trip to Jardin so that you can make the most of your time!
Even though Medellin has so much to offer tourists, sometimes you just need to get away from the hustle and bustle of the city. If that’s the case, then Jardin is the perfect day trip destination!
Many tourists’ first-weekend getaway trip is to Guatape. While this makes sense, Jardin is a hidden gem that’s often overlooked.
Jardin is a 3.5-4.5 hour drive from Medellin that may make some tourists think it’s too far away. In reality, the trip is only 82 miles, but the windy roads make the drive a lot longer.
However, the drive is beautiful and definitely worth it once you reach your destination. Since it’s a farther drive than Guatape, I recommend staying in Jardin for at least three nights.
This will give you enough to relax, indulge in the town’s colonial architecture, and explore the natural beauty that surrounds it.
The best time to visit Jardin is during the dry season, which is from December to March. This is also the busiest time in town, so be sure to book your accommodation in advance!
If you are unable to travel during the dry season, don’t worry. The weather is still pleasant during the wet season (April-November), and you’ll be able to find discounts on accommodation and activities.
Since Jardin is 5,817 feet above sea level, the temperature is cool, similar to Medellin. But for some reason, during the rainy season, it seems to get more rainfall throughout the day.
In Medellin, it seems like most mornings are sunny, followed by a thunderstorm in the late afternoon. On the other hand, Jardin can have rain on and off throughout the day.
One thing the big city of Medellin and Jardin have in common is that the rainy season has low tourist numbers. This is due to the increased chance of rain each day. Therefore, many people want to travel when they are guaranteed sunny skies.
So, if you don’t mind a little rainfall, then visiting during the wet season can save you some money! Just be sure to pack your raincoat and umbrella.
Once you arrive in Jardin, you’ll need to strategize how you want to spend your time. This quaint little town is full of activities for tourists!
Since it’s a longer commute to Jardin, you’ll probably arrive in the early or late afternoon. I recommend checking into your accommodation and finding somewhere to grab dinner.
You’ll find that Jardin is big into breakfast and dinner. Most cafes will have breakfast in the morning and then only serve drinks until they close in the afternoon.
Then, a lot of the established restaurants will not open until 5 or 6 pm for dinner. You’ll find lunch spots, but they’re more limited.
So, you may need to wait until 5 pm before you have a big meal. You can find pizza, typical Colombian food, and pasta in Jardin.
After you fill your stomach, I recommend going to the Parque Principal (main square) to relax, people watch, and check out the colonial architecture.
This is a great place to start your trip because you get a feel for the town while also getting acclimated to the high altitude.
On your first full day in Jardin, we recommend taking it easy and exploring the town. Colonial towns are fun because you get to indulge in the culture and history.
You won’t find the nightclubs or big malls that you find in Medellin. Instead, you will find charming cafes, colorful buildings, and a slower pace of life.
One thing we love about Jardin is that it’s small enough to walk everywhere! You won’t need to take any taxis or buses to get around town.
However, you can hop on a moto-taxi if you need a quick ride. These are motorbikes with a seat in the back for passengers.
You could do this every day, but we recommend starting at the Parque Principal for breakfast and coffee for the first day.
Some cafes will have breakfast while some only serve coffee. So, you may need to walk around a bit to find the perfect spot.
To help you out, I recommend getting breakfast either at De Los Andes Cafe or Cafe Macanas. Both serve breakfast and have unique atmospheres.
De Los Andes Cafe has one of the best views of Parque Principal. You can sit on the second-floor balcony and enjoy the fresh mountain air.
The breakfast options, like eggs, toast, and coffee, are pretty typical. But they also have some sandwich options if you want lunch.
From the balcony, you can stare at the imposing cathedral and listen to the birds chirping. It’s the perfect way to start your day!
If you are looking for a more local breakfast experience, then head to Cafe Macanas. This is one of the most popular breakfast spots in Jardin.
Cafe Macanas doesn’t have a view of the park, but its greenhouse atmosphere is so charming. All the plants make you feel like you are outside even though you are inside.
You can either sit inside or go to the back patio. The back patio to relax in the sun or shade.
Both places have exceptional Wifi if you need to get some work done or just stay connected.
After spending the morning at the park, we recommend exploring the rest of Jardin.
There are so many cute streets and alleyways to get lost in! I recommend walking around and taking it all in.
You will find that a lot of the houses are painted brightly. As you walk, you can check out gift shops, local bars or just find a place to sit and people-watch.
On your second day in Jardin, I’d definitely say you should try exploring the surrounding area.
There are a lot of hiking trails within close proximity to Jardin. This is one of the best activities to do here because you get to experience the stunning nature.
Check out Cascada La Escalera, which is a gorgeous hike with waterfalls. The waterfall is on the main path so you can’t miss it!
Cascada del Amor is another great option and is only about a 20-minute walk from town. This hike is something you can do on the second or third day.
If you want to explore a town outside of Jardin, we recommend Salento. It’s about a 1.5-hour drive from Jardin, but it’s so worth it!
On your last day in Jardin (if staying only three days), you should be spending the morning exploring some caves!
There are a few different options, but I’d recommend the Cuevas de Guacharos or Cueva del Esplendor.
Both of these caves are natural wonders with a waterfall inside. It’s truly an amazing experience.
After exploring the caves, we recommend relaxing at one of the cafes in town. Get some work done, people-watch, or just enjoy a cup of coffee.
End your day with dinner at Bon Appetit. This is one of the best restaurants with good wine and pasta.
Typically it’s first come, first serve, so makes sure you get a spot!
After dinner, walk around town one last time at night around the Parque Principal. Enjoy live music, hang with the locals, and soak up the lively atmosphere.
You don’t need a lot of time in Jardin, but three days is the perfect amount to explore the town and surrounding area. Don’t overlook this special town as many travelers do!
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