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Colombian Cities Offer World Travelers Adventure, Culture, Nature, Gastronomy And More
PROCOLOMBIA, the Government entity charged with promoting tourism, exports and foreign direct investment in Colombia, is excited to welcome world travelers to experience its diverse array of vacation destinations this summer season. Whether looking for an off-the-beaten path adventure, a lux retreat with world-class cuisine or a beach getaway with vibrant nightlife, PROCOLOMBIA reminds international visitors that Colombia is the destination that has it all.
Ahead of the 2013 summer season, four Colombian cities have been included in Tripadvisor’s Travelers’ Choice® 2013 Top 25 Destinations in South America. Millions of Tripadvisor users voted Cartagena, Bogota, Santa Marta and Cali as some of the travel website’s best vacation spots. In addition, the country’s “Coffee Landscape” is nominated to become VirtualTourist’s “8th Wonder of the World.”
In addition, international tourists can experience a bevy of Colombian events and festivals all year round. Colombians vibrant environment is full of festivals and fairs throughout their cities; some of the most renowned for the second semester of 2013 are the World Salsa Festival in Cali that takes place the first week of August, the Flower Festival in Medellin during the second week of August and the Cali Fair the last week of December.
“Beyond our diverse culture, beautiful beaches and exciting cities, Colombia is home to many memorable experiences that are available to summer travelers,” said Maria Claudia Lacouture, President of PROCOLOMBIA. “Whether visitors are looking to spend their vacation exploring nature, sampling unique cuisine or relaxing in style, we welcome tourists from around the world to come enjoy all that Colombia has to offer.”
PROCOLOMBIA’s “Magical Realism” tourism campaign launched earlier this year and targets international travelers who look for different, magical, unique and inspiring vacation experiences. For summer travelers, Cartagena, Bogota, Santa Marta, Cali and the Coffee Triangle – comprised of Caldas, Quindio and Risaralda -- feature some of the best aspects of the “Magical Realism” experience: adventure, meetings and events, culture, sun and beach, nautical and cruise ships, spas and ecotourism.
Cartagena, for example, was recognized by Tripadvisor for its “excellent beaches” and “historic old town,” which make the city a UNESCO World Heritage site and popular port of call for cruise ships. More than 350,000 international tourists visited Colombia via cruise ship alone in 2012, and summer visitors can book trips on more than 27 different cruise lines stopping in Colombia’s three major ports of call.
Together, these four cities are among the largest recipients of international travelers in Colombia, with nearly 341,000 of the country’s 1.6 million foreign visitors heading for those destinations in 2012, according to the Colombia national immigration authority’s annual report on foreign tourism. More than 800 direct flights from 20 different countries makes accessing Colombia this summer convenient for millions of travelers.