Colombia - a paradise for travellers or a taboo due to civil war? Tell us your opinion about Colombia!
BackgroundA military conflict between the Colombian government and the guerilla threatens the country since the 60s. The rate of homicide and kidnapping has risen mainly in the 90s. Nevertheless, is it safe to visit the country after the recent developments or would it be better to stay away from the country? The opinions vary. Federal foreign offices of various countries advise against traveling through the country. On the other hand, many travelers returning from Colombia report that it is safe enough to visit. The purpose of this forum is to get a general idea about travel experiences in Colombia.
LinksTravel advices of foreign ministries
U.S. Department of State
Foreign and Commonwealth Office
Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade
Info pages about Colombia
south america tours
Wikipedia Travel Guide
Colombia Travel Blog
Internet Forums About Colombia
The poorbuthappy Colombia guide
Virtual Tourist Forum Colombia
My experience in Colombia: The security situation is better than its reputation, as long as common rules are respected and certain areas are avoided, Colombia is a save place to explore.
My experience in Colombia: The security situation does not permit to visit the country. Therefore my opinion corresponds to the warnings of foreign ferderal offices of various countries.
drew sullivan, Colombia, wrote on 06.02.12
My relation with Colombia: I have lived here for 1 year now
Despite what many people will have you think, travelers in Colombia are not targeted for kidnappings. Unless you are here working for a multinational corporation or the CIA, your chances of being kidnapped while on holiday in Colombia today are about the same as being attacked by a shark in Australia.
What is a real threat to travelers safety in Colombia are scams, pickpockets, armed robberies and more serious forms of theft including drugging. From Bogotá to Brussels the world has plenty of skilled, cunning thieves. Knowing their tricks keeps you a step ahead of them, allowing you to let go of your fear and open up your mind and heart to the stunning, loving and passionate country that is Colombia.
Andrew Jackson, USA, wrote on 31.01.11
My relation with Colombia: Vacationing around the world
Colombia is a beautiful country. Specially Medellin the weather is amazing its not too hot or too cold they have this country homes called fincas which are like mini resorts with pools. It was safe
Mike Norris, USA, wrote on 28.01.11
My relation with Colombia: Wife's from Bogota, been there 4x
Bogota, and the "touristy" areas of most other major cities are relatively safe and people are generally friendly. Colombia is nothing like it's depicted in the media. Don't get me wrong, if you're from the US, visiting Colombia isn't like going to Canada, but it's not like going to Africa either. Just remember these 2 rules that apply to visiting any non-first world country: 1.)Buy medical evac insurance that will transport you back to USA if you are seriously injured and 2.) If you are planning to travel between cities, take flights...they are readily available and cheap. DO NOT TAKE THE BUS THROUGH THE JUNGLE...THAT IS WHERE THE HORROR STORIES HAPPEN. Enjoy your trip :)
Brendan Rayment, Great Britain, wrote on 16.06.10
My relation with Colombia: I loved it so much I moved here!
The difference between the perception of Colombia is staggering. The country is beautiful and very diverse, the people are warm, generous and fun loving and I have always felt very safe here. On my first visit to Colombia my friends and family in London were very concerned for my safety and so was I. I spent 3 months falling in love with the country and its culture and never felt in any danger. On the day after I returned to London I woke up to find my street cordoned of by police as a teenager had been murdered at the bus stop during the night!
Of course Colombia has its problems, but it is much safer than people imagine and as long as you heed local advice and stay out of the bad areas you will be fine. I am now living in Colombia and my life is very tranquil, except for the parties and Colombia's passion for life!
I am now working with two other British guys in our own tour operator looking after other foreigners who want to explore this paradise on earth.
Mark Carroll, USA, wrote on 03.05.10
My relation with Colombia: Married for 35 years to a Colombian woman.
I hate to burst everyone's bubble who has uploaded messages to this site, but my last visit to Pereira, Colombia almost ended my life. While driving in the city we stopped to check the car. A man approached me, demended several items and then told me to get on the ground. While trying to do so, he shot me 3 times. Neck, wrist, hip, with a 38 calibur pistol. I was rushed to the hospital by a spectator. Lost jugular vein in neck, punctured left ear drum (noise), shattered left wrist and hole through hip. Bullets splattered on pavement and caused other injuries as well. Fortunately I survived. I do, however, feel the affects of this incident every day. I have not returned since that experience. It was about 18 years ago. I am going to Pereire, Colombia this month and will log back into this site to give an update. I am scared to return, but want to visit family and see the beautiful countryside. It will an emotional return. Hopefully it will be a successful, enjoyable visit.