Colombiaâ€™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 Colombiaâ€™s southwest. Cali entices all who visit with promises of balmy nights spent in the company of beguiling caleÃ±as 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 RÃo 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, Caliâ€™s geography means that poorer neighborhoods are mixed in with richer ones to a greater extent than in BogotÃ¡ or MedellÃn.
It may not be a city to everybodyâ€™s liking, but given Caliâ€™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.