The Best Tours in Medellin

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Tours in Medellin

One of the reasons that people stay in Medellin for so long is that there are so many fantastic things to do in the city and the surrounding area. The only fear for digital nomads lured to Medellin by the affordable cost of living, wonderful climate and the opportunities to get to know the friendly locals, is that they will end up struggling to focus on the day job because of all the distractions. The best tours and activities in Medellin are a marvelous mix of encounters with the city’s rich history, natural beauty and culinary treats. We’ve covered some of our favorite city escapes in a separate guide that outlines the best places to get out into natureand the best day trips from Medellin which includes one of the most popular day trips to Guatape by road or helicopter.
A lot of the activities featured in those articles are better done as part of a tour with one of the city’s best tour operators. To avoid repeating ourselves here we’ve focused on the best tours in the city.
There is something in here for every budget, and although it can make exploring the city more expensive than just jumping on the metro, we do recommend that you book tours and excursions with a qualified guide who will not only enrich your understanding of the city, but also help put money into the local economy. Beyond the activities listed here, the team at Palenque Tours Colombia have a comprehensive list of the most engaging tours in Medellin. They belong to the Colombian Association of Sustainable Tour Operators (Acotur) and are fully certified so you know you’re contributing to the sustainable development of the city when you work with them. All of these tours can be organized with a pick up from your CasaCol  luxury vacation rental and are designed for real travelers that want to scratch beneath the surface of the city.

A City Tour with a Flowery Flourish
This full day activity combines a visit of a traditional flower farm in Santa Elena and a Medellín city-tour including a stunning cable-car ride into town. Flowers are the symbol of Medellín and the annual Flower Festival in August is the cultural highlight of the year. Travel to the flower village of Santa Elena located in the highlands above Medellín. Growing flowers has a long tradition in the region and visiting a flower farm to get to know the so-called “Silletero” culture is a unique experience.
Afterwards drive to the Nature Reserve “Parque Arví” and take the cable car to Medellín’s Santo Domingo neighbourhood and start your city-tour. The cable car was constructed to make the inner city more accessible to people from the outskirts and allows visitors a glimpse into the lives of the marginalized population. Go on with the cable car to the city centre and downtown Medellín.Listen to local musicians and the traditional “Guasca” music while visiting Parque Berrío.
Stroll through the hustle and bustle of downtown Medellín to the famous Botero Plaza with an exhibition of the Colombian artist Fernando Botero, whose sculptures have become a landmark of the city.

Bilingual guide
Private transport & pick up service at your hotel
Public transport (Metro & Funicular): The Arvi cable car is closed on Mondays and on Tuesdays if Monday is a bank holiday.
Visit of a traditional flower farm & introduction to the Silletero Culture
Tour of the historic centre of Medellín and Santo Domingo
Traditional lunch
Water & snack
Travel insurance

The Art of Medellin’s Maestro Fernando Botero
Arguably one of the world’s most successful and renowned living artists, Medellin’s finest, Fernando Botero, is a true national icon and a symbol of the city’s creative impulses. As he himself puts it, he’s the “most Colombian of Colombian artists’ and his generous donation of hundreds of works to the museums in his hometown have enriched the city’s cultural offering.
This cultural experience will immerse you in the iconic world of ‘Boterismo’, with a bilingual art expert walking you through a wonderfully curated selection of voluptuous figures in the Botero Square and the Museum of Antioquia.

Bilingual Concierge
Fernando Botero art expert (2 hours)
Entrance fees
Duration: App. 2 hours

A Very Social Bean to Brew Coffee Tour
Learn exactly why Colombia is famous for producing the world’s best cup of coffee on a special visit to a smallholding high up in the hills of Medellin.
On less than three hectares a local farmer and his family produce their own specialty brand of coffee serving up the unique opportunity to observe the whole coffee processing from the plant to the cup.
The tour also helps explain Colombia’s complicated conflict and how years of violence have placed residents of the countryside in the crossfire. Meet the families that rely on coffee to build a better life for future generations. In Medellin you’ll visit where the coffee is roasted and learn from a professional barista how to prepare a perfect cup of Colombian coffee.

Private Transport
Bilingual guide
Juices, water, coffee
Activity insurance
Duration: App. 6 hours

Dive Deep into Medellin’s Troubled History
From no-go to must go, the transformation in Medellin’s reputation has changed notably since it was considered the most dangerous city in the world in the early 1990s.
This remarkable urban transformation is an ongoing process of social and urban change. The museum “Casa de la Memoria” is an investigation centre of the urban conflict of the last decades and offers exclusive insights into this controversial part of the city’s history.
Unlike other similar museums dedicated to the memory of a country’s violent past, a way to heal the relationship of a country with its past (war or dictatorship), the “Casa de la Memoria” in Medellin deals with a memory of a conflict that’s still very much evolving. It’s a powerful symbol of hope and a landmark of social transformation in Medellín.
Afterwards take the new cable car up to “La Sierra”, a neighborhood almost exclusively known for gang violence until a few years ago. Key to the city’s progress have been a number of urban planning and public transport initiatives combined with social transformation projects.
These projects aim to reduce crime and fight poverty by reconnecting the city’́s poorest neighborhoods with the city centre.
Furthermore, the creation of public parks and libraries aim to improve education and local recreation.

Bilingual attendance
Pick up service at your hotel & private transport
Visit of the “Casa de la Memoria”
Cable Car ride to “La Sierra”
Water & snack
Travel insurance
Duration: 4 hours

From Trash to Flowers in Moravia
The densely populated neighbourhood of Moravia was once Medellín’s municipal rubbish dump with an open-air mountain of trash surrounded by a large shanty town, whose residents used to live in almost absolute poverty. Due to Colombia’s armed conflict and the number of displaced refugees more and more people arrived in Moravia, located right next to the city centre. Moravia nowadays is considered to be the most populated “barrio” of Medellín. The neighbourhood is known for its strong community spirit and the positive attitude of its people. Plenty of local community-run projects have transformed Moravia into a model urban centre, with the mound of trash turned into a garden-covered hillside and represents one of the landmarks of social and urban transformation of Medellín. Explore the area guided by community leaders and get insights on this unique story of social and urban transformation. Directly support the local community projects.

Bilingual guide
Pick up service at your CasaCol luxury vacation rental
Private transport
Tour of the Moravia neighborhood
Water & snack
Travel insurance
Duration: 4 hours

A Great Tasting Tour for Foodies
Enjoy an immersive cooking class and comforting lunch whilst helping those in need. This unique community-based social project educates low-income Colombians on how to cook and utilize regional foods as a financial resource.
A Canadian chef set up this inspiring food project several years ago, and all funds generated through your visit are reinvested in the community. This means you’ll be actively contributing to the training program, course materials, and equipment as well as the premises. Give yourself a pat on the back!

Bilingual concierge
Private cooking class & lunch
Filtered water
Private transport & pick up service at your hotel
Taxes and fees
Travel insurance
Duration: 4 hours

A Tour of Medellin’s Iconic Tango Dance Floors
Medellin’s local inhabitants, paisas, have a melancholy soul that explains their love of tango. The relationship with the musical genre was cemented when legendary singer, Carlos Gardel, died on a trip to the city in 1935.
Visit the city’s iconic tango bars with an aficionado on hand to take you on a truly authentic spin through Medellin.

Tango Classes
Duration: 4 hours

A Tour of Medellin’s Street Art
This creative tour takes you through Comuna 13, a modest favela that has gone from being one of the world’s most dangerous barrios to one of the most instagrammable.
Discover the socio-economic roots of this remarkable transformation with a local guide who’ll give you the backstory to the awe-inspiring graffiti murals packed with political punch.
See the graffiti of Comuna 13 guided by some of the local artists themselves. This tour gives you an insight on the history and daily life in this area and the importance of street art for social communication and identity.

Private transport
Travel insurance
Graffiti Tour in Communa 13
Bilingual guide
Coffee break pitstop
Duration: 4 hours

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