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Zona Cafetera

The smell of tangy oranges, the taste of smooth coffee and the sound of bird songs can all be found in the impressive green lands of the Zona Cafetera, a region made up of the provincial departments of Caldas, Risaralda and Quindío. Made up of valleys filled with bamboo, mountain peaks that tickle the sky and rolling landscapes, this coffee-growing region is throbbing with natural life, tranquility and adventure.

Colombia’s coffee zone only has two million inhabitants. Its major cities, Manizales, Pereira and Armenia, are all less than 200 years old, illustrating how this part of the country is richer in rural cultivation and natural beauty than in urban growth and prosperity. Coffee is just one of many reasons why this region has gained popularity. Other draws include its large natural parks, like Parque Nacional Natural Los Nevados and Valle de Cocora, and the thermal springs in Santa Rosa de Cabal.

The inhabitants here undoubtedly value tradition and a slower-paced rural lifestyle. Still, with modern cities close by, the traveler who hungers for peace and quiet but still wants to be near the action can be satisfied.

VIVA Colombia

Top Places in Zona Cafetera


113804Manizales was founded by a group of 20 antioquians on October 12, 1849, in the middle of a civil war. Even though it is the capital city of the department of Caldas and the most important city in the ...
Manizales, Colombia


113810Before it became Pereira, the capital of the Risaralda region, it was first the town of Cartago, which was moved to the place it is today in 1691. The Cartago-Pereira area was culturally influenced ...
Pereira, Colombia


113816Armenia was founded on October 14, 1889, by Jesús María Ocampo, also known as Tigrero (or the “Tiger Killer”) because of his love of hunting jaguars (known locally as tigers). Ocampo came to ...
Armenia, Colombia


117684What we now regard as the town of Salento used to be in another location and have a different name. On January 5, 1830, Simón Bolívar passed through the original town (called Barcinales) on his ...
Salento, Colombia


Although Pijao may have been avoided by travelers just a year ago due to FARC activity in the area, the situation has improved immensely and the city now sees more and more foreigners passing ...
Pijao, Colombia
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