TLDR? Medellin has many cultural, business, and musical events throughout the year, although the biggest has to be the Flower Festival.
Medellín is the second largest city in Colombia after the capital. Because of that, it’s started to become a hub for both local and international events.
Anyone who’s anyone has probably heard of the Feria de las Flores, or the Flower Festival. However, there are quite a few smaller festivals out there that are also worth knowing about.
This guide goes through all the most important yearly events in Medellin as well as what to expect. So grab your planner, jump on Skyscanner, and get ready to visit the City of Eternal Spring during some of the year’s hottest events.
Colombiatex de Las Américas – January 23-25
Let’s start by talking about one of the things Medellín is best known for: fashion.
If it’s fashion events you’re after, Colombiatex is the way to go. This is sort of like a textile trade fair, and is generally held at the beginning of each year.
The event is focused on Colombian design, and puts Medellin in the spotlight for buyers from all over the world. Whether it’s local designers or international brands you want to check out, Colombiatex has got it all.
This year in particular marked 35 years of Colombiatex de Las Americas, as well as Inexmoda (Institute for Export and Fashion). The event’s theme was circular awareness and sustainability—two big topics not only in the current climate, but especially in Medellin.
La Solar – February 11
Do you like music festivals?
Well, the self-proclaimed “Hottest Festival on the Planet,” also known as La Solar, is set to be held in City of Eternal Spring, as well as in other cities in Colombia throughout the year.
This festival, which is much like Coachella or Lollapalooza will take place in Medellin in February. International and local artists alike are set to don the stage, including figures like Sean Paul, as well as local singers like Ryan Castro and Sky Rompiendo.
If you want to visit for yourself, you’ll find the event in Parque Norte. Snag yourself some tickets and get ready to boogie in Medellin!
Fair 2 Wheels Colombia – May 4-7
If you’ve spent any time in Colombia, then you know that motorcycles abound. In fact, they abound just about anywhere in Colombia.
While motorcycles might not get everyone’s blood pumping, if you’re a fan (or a dabbler) then you’ve got to head to Feria de las Dos Ruedas Colombia (or F2R for short), the largest motorcycle fair in the Americas.
This event will be taking place for the 15th year in a row this year and will be held at the Plaza Mayor Convention Center. There you’ll get to check out advances, innovation, and new releases from the motorcycle industry.
It’s a pretty cool experience and can be a cool way to learn a new thing or two.
Maridaje – June 1-4
Maridaje is another hot event in Colombia, and it literally translates to pairing.
With that name, my guess is you already know what this festival is about—food.
This foodie favorite event takes place every year at the Plaza Mayor convention center in Medellin. Basically, it offers a convention where the best restaurants, pastry shops, food brands, and chefs meet.
You’ll get to check out exhibitions of all these hotshots showing their wares, and often times, giving out a free sample or two.
Don’t think this event is small, either. With nearly 40,000 visitors a year over the past dozen years, it’s likely that 2023 will show a packed event too!
Expobelleza – June 21-24
Expobelleza is for the aspiring pageant queens out there, and is heald in Medellin every year to celebrate cosmetology.
Once again, this event brings together brands of both national and international stature to share new beauty trends and techniques as well as to sell their wares.
Expobelleza is for people who develop in aesthetics, cosmetology, styling, barbering, health, and wellness. However, even if you’re just interested in beauty in general, it can be a fun event to check out.
Colombiamoda – June
If you’ve already been to Colombiatex and loved it then you don’t want to miss out on Colombiamoda. This is Colombia’s version of Paris Fashion Week, and boy does it deliver.
This fair is a showcase for designers and is a place where some of Colombia’s trendiest big names have earned their fame.
In fact, this has become such a huge fashion industry fair that it’s one of the biggest in all of Latin America. Over the three days of the fair, you can find more than 60,000 visitors at a time.
The event isn’t just fashion shows, either. There’s plenty of shopping to be done and other activities to participate in where you can learn more about the industry.
F-Air Colombia – July 12-16
F-Air is an aeronautical and aerospace sector fair, and only takes place every two years. It features fun things like air shows as well as dryer things like business conferences for those who are active in the industry.
This year, from July 12 to 16 at the Jose Maria Cordova International Airport, in the municipality of Rionegro, the Special Administrative Unit of Civil Aeronautics, and the Colombian Air Force will be hosting this event.
The event will include an airshow as well as multiple opportunities to learn more about Colombian airspace and what the industry looks like in the country.
Feria de Las Flores – August
I couldn’t easily talk about the biggest events in Medellin without talking about the Feria de Las Flores!
Feria de las Flores is probably the biggest event in Medellin, and is one that celebrates the old traditions of the local paisa people.
Back in the day, you see, Medellin was a big flower farming area. Although the city has sprung up in place of the fields of flowers, you can still find flower farms on the outskirts of town in Santa Elena.
Anyway, 2023 is the 66th year that the city has held the event, which takes place in August every year. The festival lasts a week or more and includes tons of parades, concerts, and hawkers.
The whole thing comes to a head with the big flower parade, where you’ll get to see traditional silleteros showing off impressive flower displays in a seemingly never ending line.
This is by far one of the coolest festivals the city hosts and is one that most tourists don’t want to miss the chance to see!
Medejazz, International Jazz Festival – September
Although Medellin is famously known as the capital of reggaeton, there’s also some pretty good jazz to be found.
In fact, every September the Medearte Corporation hosts the Medejazz festival, where you can listen to some of the best up-and-coming jazz artists in the country.
Hot local venues such as Z Bar come alive with the sounds of saxophones and piano late into the night, making for a unique way to experience the City of Eternal Spring
Altavoz Fest – September-November
Back in 2004 Antioquia’s Secretary of Culture decided it was time to host some alternative and rock music in the area.
Taht’s when he established the Altavoz Festival, a place where rock and alternative music such as punk, metal, rap, core, ska, reggae and electronic genres fill the city.
Altavoz is actually divided into two main events: Ciudad Altavoz, and Altavoz Fest.
The first one seeks to get young musicians from the city to participate in a contest that will serve as a showcase for them to grow in the music and culture sector with their own creations.
Then, once the contest is over and the winners have been chosen, Altavoz Fest is held. This is a series of concerts with well-known artists of each genre where the winners of Ciudad Altavoz will perform to demonstrate why they were finalists.
The best thing about this event, for lovers of these musical genres, is that it’s free! So, if you want to hear some good jams without breaking the bank, this might be the festival for you.
Myths and Legends Parade – December 7
Just like the Greeks have Mount Olympus and the Egyptians have the tales of Ra, so do paisas have their own myths and legends.
The annual myths and legends parade, which takes place in Medellin each December 7th, celebrates these cultural stories.
The parade features characters such as goblins and dwarves and are riddled with supposedly true tales of magic taking place among the hills of Antioquia.
A few stories you might hear during this parade include tales of Patasola or La Madremonte. If you don’t know what I’m talking about, you might just have to come to Medellin next December!
Next up are the Camacol fairs.
Camacol is the ‘Colombian Chamber of Construction’ and is a non-profit association of companies from the construction sector.
Each year, Camacol holds two big fairs:
Here’s a rundown of both of them.
This is an international fair that will be celebrating 25 years in 2023. The event is a tradeshow that brings together construction companies and real estate industry experts.
Expocamalcol takes place for a little less than a week in which exhibitions, business roundtables, new product launches, and academic forums, among others, are presented.
As it’s a large-scale fair, it takes place, like many others, at the Plaza Mayor convention center in Medellin.
Expoinmobiliaria – March 4-6
Expoinmobiliaria is similar to Expocamacol, but focuses on real estate investors and dealers as opposed to those in construction.
It’s an ideal setting for the search and purchase of real estate of all kinds:
This year, Expoinmobiliaria will be held March 4-6th in the yellow pavilion of Plaza Mayor.
So, if you are thinking about a real estate investment business in Medellin, this is the perfect opportunity to soak up everything you need to know about it!
International Tango Festival
Most people think of salsa when they think of Colombia. But, there’s actually a big tango scene, too!
Even though this dance style is of Argentine and Uruguayan origin, it’s popular in Medellin thanks to the fact that the tango singer-songwriter Carlos Gardel lived and died in the City of Eternal Spring.
As a result, the dance has taken off, and today, the International Tango Festival is hosted each year in the city. It involves hundreds of national and international artists as participants in the streets, squares, and theaters and has been running for a whopping 16 years!
As part of the festival, there’s a big championship for everyone from kids to teens to adults to participate in. All the displays are amazing, so even if you don’t dance, it’s a fun event to attend.
Other Important Events in Medellín
Although I’ve listed out some of the biggest events in Medellin, there are plenty of others to know about too.