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Colombia’s third largest city is one of many contrasts. Watched over by the statue of the Cristo Rey and the monument of the Tres Cruces, the capital of the Valle del Cauca region is the industrial heart of Colombia’s southwest. Cali entices all who visit with promises of balmy nights spent in the company of beguiling caleñas with salsa rhythms and days spent idly wandering through chic areas lined with boutiques or historic districts steeped in art and culture.

In the outlying areas of Cali, there are many recommended sights that include the zoo, Buga, Sonso, Parque Nacional Natural los Farallones and the Ecoparque Río Pance. Cali has much more to offer beyond its renowned nightlife and it is gradually becoming a well-rounded tourist destination. Nonetheless, it is the contagious desire to shake those hips that brings people together in the packed discotecas of the Colombian salsa capital.

Cali is coming to terms with its violent past and unruly present. Unlike other Colombian cities of its size, Cali’s geography means that poorer neighborhoods are mixed in with richer ones to a greater extent than in Bogotá or Medellín.

It may not be a city to everybody’s liking, but given Cali’s geographical location, there is no denying its importance for those traveling to or from Ecuador. There are attractions here and in the surrounding areas that can keep the visitor entertained for a few days or more.

Neighborhoods in Cali: Near Cali,

Other places nearby Cali: Buga,

By Richard McColl
With over five years travelling and working in Latin America, Richard feels most at home here in the big Continent. From the former Scottish...
08 Feb 2012

VIVA Colombia

Top Places in Cali


115408Only 80 kilometers away from Cali, Buga is another world from Cali’s busy salsa dancing streets. One of the oldest cities in Colombia, Buga was founded by the Spanish in 1555, then called ...
Buga, Near Cali, Cali, Colombia

Things to do in Cali


115400Catching a fútbol game in any city in Colombia is nothing short of a religious experience. Hordes flock to the stadiums, screaming furious chants at the opposition while voicing praise on their ...
Other Activity
Cali, Colombia

Casa Proartes

121091This great little Neoclassic-style building, next door to the Teatro Municipal, is yet another center for the arts in Cali. Built in 1871 and beautifully restored in 1991, several free temporary art ...
Culture and Arts, Historical Building, Movie & Theater
Cali, Colombia

Iglesia San Pedro

121092First erected for the Priest of Quito in 1539, then later torn down and rebuilt in 1772, again in 1841, and one last time in 1930, this church has undergone several alterations. Inside and out, it is ...
Historical Building, Religion Info.
Cali, Colombia

Capilla de la Inmaculada

121068Built in 1762, the Capilla de la Inmaculada has a modern and modest interior, but is worth a quick peek because it remains the church of choice at midday. This narrow and long chapel is a homage to ...
Historical Building, Religion Info.
Cali, Colombia

Plaza San Francisco

121067San Francisco is an enormous brick plaza and one of the largest in Cali, where pigeons (and humans) gather to catch some rays and chill out. This plaza was actually destroyed in 1960 and rebuilt in ...
City Plaza
Cali, Colombia

Los Gatos

121094In 1996, renowned painter and sculptor Hernando Tejada began what came to be a collection of a dozen cat sculptures along the Cali River, close to El Peñón. Tejada’s original cat, “El Gato del ...
City Walk
Cali, Colombia

Museo de Arte Moderno La Tertulia

121095For a little taste of modern art, Museo de Arte Moderno La Tertulia is your best bet. This place is much more than just an art museum, though. There is also an outdoor auditorium where you can catch ...
Cali, Colombia

Plaza de Caicedo

121427Plaza de Caicedo has always been the center of public, commercial and political life in Cali. During the colonial period, it was called the Plaza Mayor. Between 1674 and 1897, the park was used for ...
City Plaza
Cali, Colombia

Museo del Oro Calima

121071A respectable collection of gold and ceramics is housed in the Banco de la República building. This is a fairly recent collection of Calima cultural artifacts (Calima is the name of the original ...
Cali, Colombia

Teatro Municipal Enrique Buenaventura

121431On April 9, 1918, construction of this beautiful yellow theater began. Ten years later, it was completed, with remodeling done in the 1950s. Modeled like an Italian opera theater, this Neoclassical ...
Historical Building
Cali, Colombia

Cali Teatro

121434One of the few places in the city where you can get fresh air and a fine view of Cali is atop the hill in barrio San Antonio. Here you will find an 18th-century chapel and a park. The Cali Teatro, a ...
Culture and Arts, Historical Building, Religion Info.
Cali, Colombia
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