Neenan Cycling Logo

Cycling Colombia

Rewarding cycling in a beautiful region of rural Colombia



At a glance

* 10 nights hotels, 2 nights in a finca (ranch property)
* 10 days cycling with full vehicle support
* 95% tarmac, 5% unpaved tracks
* Routes predominantly follow quiet well-paved roads
* Group normally 5 to 16 plus leader. Min age 16 yrs

Rewarding cycling in a beautiful region of rural Colombia

With Colombia’s road cyclists gaining worldwide recognition and the country
revelling as an up and coming active tourism destination, there really is no
better time for a cycling trip to one of South America’s most scenic regions.
The coffee zone of Colombia lies at the heart of the country on the Western
slopes of the Central Andes and our route takes us along paved winding roads
that traverse a lush environment populated by coffee plantations and
picturesque towns. Your effort on two wheels will be duly rewarded by
stunning views and a taste of the famously warm Latin American hospitality.

https://www.exodus.co.uk/sites/exod/files/node/itinerary/images/may_0.jpg?t=1Dlclp

Type: Land Only

Flight prices available from NeenanCycling. Contact us for details

What’s included

* All breakfasts and 11 dinners
* All accommodation (see accommodation section)
* All transport and listed activities
* Tour leader throughout
* Flights from London (if booking incl. flights)
* Local bike hire

Food:
All breakfasts and 11 dinners included.

We’ll have early breakfasts throughout the tour in order to make the most of
cycling in the cooler morning temperatures, typically there will be eggs,
bread or arepas (thick corn pancakes), local cheese, and no shortage of great
coffee! Lunch stops will be made at appropriate points each day, generally at
roadside cafes/restaurants where we can get our calorie intake from grilled
meats, rice, potato chips, fruit, chocolate, juice etc. Lunches are not
included so you should make sure you carry some cash each day for this,
preferably in low denominations that are easier to change. The tour leader
may suggest collecting a small amount of money from the group for a
collective kitty – this would be used to buy fruit and snacks for eating at
pit stops whilst on the rides.

The only evening where we don’t include the evening meal is the first night
in Bogota because there is a lot of choice and enables people to choose where
they wish to dine. For the rest of the trip we will be travelling through
remote areas where there isn’t much in the way of choice for evening meal
locations. Most days we will arrive in the afternoon to our accommodation and
have a few hours of rest before being fed by our Colombian hosts either in
the same hotel or somewhere close by.

Please note that Colombia is not particularly vegetarian friendly, especially
in rural areas, as meat forms a major part of the diet and many soups are
often made with a meat base. Bogota is an exception, as there are sufficient
options to cater to all dietary requirements.

Each day you will have the opportunity to try a fantastic array of delicious
fruit juices – some of them familiar to the UK and some of them more exotic!
We recommend you to try these as they taste much better in Colombia than
anywhere else and cost a fraction of the price.

Start destination: Bogota

End destination: Bogota

Cycling profile

Day 1

Land only passengers can arrive at the hotel in Bogota this
afternoon/evening.

*Standard Hotel*

Day 2

Passengers on our Avianca group flight will have flown overnight and arrive
today in the early hours of the morning. There will be time for a few hours
rest and breakfast before setting out with the tour leader in order to try
out your bike and cycle the car-free streets of Bogota as part of the weekly
‘ciclovia’ event. Every Sunday large parts of the city are closed to traffic
as residents cycle, jog, walk, roller-skate in a remarkable display of
utilising public space in the interest of leisure and togetherness. You’ll
have a chance to see the modern Bogota and also visit a market in the
bohemian neighborhood of Usaquen. This immediate exercise is a great way to
minimise the effects of jetlag! At a certain point after a couple of hours in
the ciclovia, the leaders will give the option of climbing ‘Los Patios’. This
is an optional ascent that is practiced by hundreds of Colombians. It is
approx a 7km climb at an ascent of 6% for most of the route. If you are
nervous about the rides later in the itinerary then completing this challenge
is a great confidence boost. Note that the road used is not closed to traffic
so you should be happy cycling on a busy road, and of course afterwards you
have a fun downhill ride with spectacular views over the city.

*Standard Hotel*

Day 3

In the morning we will visit the famous and unique Zipaquira Salt Cathedral,
located inside a commercial salt mine. After the visit we will be driven to
Bogota airport to catch a flight travelling southwest to Cali. From here we
will be driven a short distance (approx. 1 hour 15 minutes) to the town of
Buga where we stay and prepare for the point-to-point riding that will
commence the following morning.

*Standard Hotel*

Day 4

Buga is one of the oldest settlements in the region and an important
religious place for the country as pilgrims flock to visit the Basilica which
contains an image of Christ. Buga is surrounded by sugar cane fields and is
located in close vicinity of the Cauca River. The tour starts out travelling
in a northward direction, staying parallel to the Cauca River as we pass
fields of sugar cane and fruit trees. Along the route we will stop to visit a
sugar cane farm. The vast majority of today’s road is fairly flat or with
small undulations, and the route is very scenic thanks to the proximity of
the Andean Western Cordillera and the possibility to see peaks of the Central
Cordillera on a clear day. The temperature in the valley can get very high so
be sure to wear sun cream and stay hydrated. Our destination is the town of
Roldanillo and we will spend the night at a hotel just off the main plaza.

(Ascent: 515m, descent: 530m)

*Standard Hotel*

Day 5

Another day of cycling on a predominantly flat and quiet road which will take
us through beautiful landscapes in preparation for the more mountainous rides
in the days to come. We’ll stop for some grape juice along the way and
continue to the hotel on the outskirts of a small town called Cartago for a
refreshing dip in the swimming pool!

(Ascent: 381m, descent: 394m)

*Standard Hotel*

Day 6

The first few kilometres of today’s ride are along a flat road leading to an
intersection from where we’ll take an undulating road south-eastwards to
Alcalá and up into coffee plantation region. This section will involve the
first real climb of the tour. After passing Alcalá we’ll have lunch in a
village called Quimbaya and continue through Montenegro. We’ll arrive at
the hotel and have the afternoon free to rest and enjoy the swimming pool and
surroundings. In addition to coffee plantations, the landscape is also home
to banana and plantain, bamboo trees and flowers. A short walk down the road
from the hotel there is a coffee theme park with a viewing platform at the
entrance which is definitely worth a visit.

(Ascent: 890m, descent: 530m)

*Standard Hotel*

Day 7

Today we start riding on a quiet and fairly flat road surrounded by coffee,
banana and pineapple plantations to the town of La Tebaida. After passing
this town, we’ll stop for a drink break and ride for a short section on a
busier road. At a point called ‘La Y’ we will deviate and take a secondary
road to enjoy a nice downhill to Rio Verde and then continue onwards to the
town of Buenavista. From Rio Verde there is a challenging steep uphill of
about 3km to get to Buenavista – this is the hardest climb of the tour but
very rewarding. We’ll visit a local school before having lunch in the town of
Buenavista, and then there will be an opportunity to try one of the region’s
best exported coffee brands at a wonderful terrace with a beautiful view.
After the break, there is still some climbing to be done but after reaching
the the top it will all be downhill back to Rio Verde on a different road.
From Rio Verde, you will take the same road previously ridden to the hotel
for the night.

(Ascent: 1000m, descent: 1147m)

*Standard Hotel*

Day 8

Today’s ride is 90% uphill! But don’t worry as it is not too steep. There
is a steady climb after crossing the river all the way up to Boquia (near
Salento). On the way we’ll stop for a Coffee Experience Tour at Café
Sorrento and have a chance to learn about the process of growing coffee.
After this tour the next stop will be at the Quindío Botanic Gardens where
we will learn about the local flora and we also visit a butterfly farm. Lunch
will be in the town of Calarca and then we’ll ride the last portion of the
route involving a very scenic final downhill to Boquia. The finca for the
next two nights is beautifully situated and is a peaceful place for us to be
based. After dinner some kids from the area will give a folklore performance
. It’s also a good opportunity to enjoy a beer.

(Ascent: 591m, descent: 282m)

*Finca*

Day 9

You may wish to rest today and take a well-earned break from the saddle,
remaining in the surroundings of our beautifully located ranch just outside
of Salento. Alternatively you can opt for a wonderful walk in Cocora Valley
to see the picturesque endemic Wax Palm trees. There are different walk
options varying in difficulty and duration (approx. 11km), all of which are
signposted. For those who want to cycle up to the highest point that we’ll
meet on the tour (2410m above sea level), the ride from the accommodation and
up to Cocora involves a 1000m climb.

(Ascent: 1000m, descent: 1000m)

*Finca*

Day 10

Today we tackle an initially tough climb out of Boquia and the valley up to
join the main road to take us towards the pretty coffee town of Filandia. It
is claimed that because of its architecture, landscapes and hospitable nature
of the locals, that Filandia is one of the most charming and attractive towns
in the whole of Colombia. We’ll take a break here before setting off on a
beautiful stretch of road down to Quimbaya and onwards to Alcala for lunch.
This stretch from Filandia to Quimbaya is one of the tour highlights. In the
afternoon we continue in the direction of Pereira and take a left turn before
the city in order to reach Cerritos, our location for the night. 

(Ascent: 1220m, descent: 1830m)

*Standard Hotel*

Day 11

Our penultimate day of cycling has it all. We start off gently with a fun
downhill section leading to the Cauca River from where our route plateaus out
as we are flanked on both sides by sugar cane fields. After lunch at a
roadside restaurant with an adjoining trout farm, we follow a branch of the
river northwards (Rio Risaralda). As the road becomes steeper and offers up
spectacular views on our final climb into the highland town of Anserma. The
town’s location on the edge of a mountain makes it completely different
from other places seen on the tour, and several of the streets are too steep
to be cycled so it lends itself to being explored on foot in order to get the
maximum enjoyment! We will have dinner at a local restaurant and there are a
couple of nearby bars to explore afterwards.

(Ascent: 955m, descent: 375m)

*Standard Hotel*

Day 12

Our last day of cycling is another stunning ride as we navigate some hilly
sections on our way to Risaralda. From here we face a delightful downhill to
cross the Cauca River once more and stop for refreshments in nearby La
Rochela. After La Rochela we will ride to the place where we have lunch. We
will have to tackle a few more climbs to reach Finca La Romelia, where we
will stop for lunch. After lunch you will be transfered to your hotel where
you will spend the last night in Colombia.

(Ascent: 874m, descent: 1481m)

*Standard Hotel*

Day 13

After breakfast we will transfer by private bus to Pereira airport where the
tour will end and we’ll fly back to Bogota in order to connect with
international departure flights. Those who have booked the Cartagena trip
extension will fly via Bogota up to the Carribean Coast.

If there is a long wait at Bogota airport between arriving from Pereira and
departing in the evening, it is possible for the tour leader to organise
additional services for you should you wish. They will be able to organise
this locally for a small charge.

Prices & Dates

Date: 2017-11-252017-12-07

Trip code: MAY171125

Availability: Available

Trip status: Fully guaranteed

Price: €2855

Book now

Date: 2018-02-172018-03-01

Trip code: MAY180217

Availability: Available

Price: €3045

Book now

Date: 2018-03-242018-04-05

Trip code: MAY180324

Availability: Available

Trip status: Fully guaranteed

Price: €3045

Book now

Date: 2018-09-152018-09-27

Trip code: MAY180915

Availability: Available

Price: €3045

Book now

Date: 2018-11-102018-11-22

Trip code: MAY181110

Availability: Available

Price: €3045

Book now

Date: 2018-12-152018-12-27

Trip code: MAY181215

Availability: Available

Price: €3115

Book now

Date: 2019-01-122019-01-24

Trip code: MAY190112

Availability: Available

Price: €3175

Book now

Date: 2019-02-162019-02-28

Trip code: MAY190216

Availability: Available

Price: €3175

Book now

Date: 2019-04-142019-04-26

Trip code: MAY190414

Availability: Available

Price: €3175

Book now

Date: 2019-09-142019-09-26

Trip code: MAY190914

Availability: Available

Price: €3175

Book now

Date: 2019-11-092019-11-21

Trip code: MAY191109

Availability: Available

Price: €3175

Book now

Date: 2019-12-142019-12-26

Trip code: MAY191214

Availability: Available

Price: €3235

Book now

Customer Feedback

cycling columbia – the ups with the downs

Summary:
I absolutely loved this holiday. Have a group of like-minded people all
sweating around me and puffing and panting, made for a very cathartic
experience. At times I thought that I was going to collapse, but I also knew
(or hoped) that all the other people in our party were feeling the same way.
I would not have gone as fast or as far just off my own steam.

Rating: 5

Question:
What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

Answer:
Seeing or rather hearing other cyclists behind me passing me which urging me
on.
Sharing moments with other exodus travellers and guides.
Delighting in the wonderful array of fruits and fruit juices offered
inbetween our cycling efforts.
Knowing that no matter how slow we were (or rather I was), that there would
always be a guide behind urging me on).
The list goes on and is too numerous to put down on paper.

Question:
What did you think of your group leader?

Answer:
Gabriel was an inspiration with his ‘universal’ helmet and helpful insights
into the history, politics and culture of the towns and departments we cycled
through.
Axel was a great help making sure that nobody was left behind and always made
sure we were ok.
Oscar, words cannot describe how much I enjoyed his company, always showing
more concern for us than himself.
Jonathan was the quiet one but always there and an inspiration.
Cesar was such a support making sure we all had enough drinks and snacks
whenever the van stopped for a break.

Question:
Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

Answer:
Don’t underestimate your ability even though everyone else ‘seems’ to look
fitter, faster and stronger. No matter how slow you might be, everyone
pulled together and supported those of us that struggled. It was a fantastic
opportunity to get to know a beautiful area of the world which added to the
enjoyment sometimes helped alleviate the sore ‘saddle’.

Question:
Is there anything else you would like to add?

Answer:
I am always impressed by the enthusiasm and effort that is put in to these
holidays. All the staff regardless of roles seem to really pull their weight
and by the time the holiday was at its end, it felt as though we were one
great big family where it felt to me as if so much had been shared and
learned.

Read full review

Cycling Colombia – quite a challenge.

Summary:
Described as challenging, this is a not a trip for the faint-hearted. Plenty
of hills but with magnificent views once you make it to the top. Rather a
lot of riding on busy roads, but may be it was because of the Easter holiday
that there was so much traffic. Excellent accommodation and support.

Rating: 4

Question:
What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

Answer:
Getting to the top of the patios hill climb in Bogota, after thinking I was
going to die due to the altitude!

Question:
What did you think of your group leader?

Answer:
The support team were excellent. Gabriel at the front, Oscar in the middle
and Axel at the back, all provided encouragement.

Question:
Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

Answer:
Get fit and don’t be afraid of getting wet!

Question:
Is there anything else you would like to add?

Answer:
A very good group of fellow travellers.

Read full review

A Great Trip

Summary:
Columbia is a huge and varied country. This was a great trip that gave our
party a terrific view of part of Columbia in a short space of time.

Rating: 4

Question:
What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

Answer:
The cycling was through a wonderful hilly landscape so the views achieved
through the climbs had to be the highlight of the trip. There were many ‘made
it’ moments rewarded by the fabulous landscape.

Question:
What did you think of your group leader?

Answer:
Gabriel was a novice leader who did a great job. He had a nice light touch
and was fun to be with. Potentially he could have been more definitive with
what the days cycling would involve but was always happy to answer individual
questions. In addition, we were provided with a booklet of the exact profile
of each days ride (a great innovation which I have not experienced on other
trips) so questions were more to do with reassurance than lack of
information.

Question:
Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

Answer:
Some of the climbs are quite long and some short and steep. All of our party
had done some preparation or were already cyclists therefore no one found the
challenges too hard. My advice is prepare as much as you can. For some of us
who are not cyclists spin classes really helped get the legs in gear.The team
were great at accompanying the group which was all ages up to nearly 70.

Question:
Is there anything else you would like to add?

Answer:
I think the local operator, Pure Columbia, had put a lot of thought into
making the best out of the local conditions. Most of the hotels were above my
expectations and where they were more simple I was confident that given we
were experiencing non tourist areas they were as good as they could possibly
be. The same went for the roads, yes there were some stretches of highway but
these were kept to a minimum and a means to get us to long stretches of
beautiful country sections. Also we did the Cartagena extension and Pure
Columbia did a great job on the organisation. If you can do it do so, the
Caribbean coast is a fantastic contrast to the interior. We loved the
boutique hotel in Cartagena’s old town. The guided tour was great and they
made available a trip to nearby islands for a bit of real Caribbean swimming.

Read full review

Cycle colombia

Summary:
I have done many trips with exodus but this rates as probably the best cycle
trip I have ever been on so well organized the fantastic scenery the people
the food the cycling was just amazing although the group was ok there were 2
people on the trip that did make me feel quite uncomfortable at times
.Colombia is just a great country and it deserves more western visitors go
now before it becomes to overcrowded with tourists.

Rating: 5

Question:
What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

Answer:
Well what can I say Oscar a fantastic guy leader person nothing was to much
trouble for this amazing man also having Gabriel and Andreas plus a great man
Axel who stayed with me pulling me up the climbs and how can I forget Adelmo
the mechanic also a former pro cyclist and of cause Augustus and Cesar the
driver supplying us with endless water which was very welcome.These men all
where a credit to the country one word EXCELLENT

Question:
What did you think of your group leader?

Answer:
One of the best I have ever had

Question:
Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

Answer:
Just do it

Read full review

Brilliant cycle trip to Colombia

Summary:
Fantastic trip. 100% recommend it. Point to point cycling in beautiful
scenery with great staff.

Rating: 5

Question:
What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

Answer:
Being part of the Bogota Ciclovia – Sunday riding through the closed streets
of Bogota with thousands of other people.
Some amazing downhills
I really liked the side trip to the salt cathedral – the main chapel was
stunning!

Question:
What did you think of your group leader?

Answer:
Tatiana is great. Very warm and friendly. She really took the time to look
after us, and share her enthusiasm for Colombia. I’d really like to give the
whole brilliant staff team, Oscar, Cesar and Jonathan, a mention as well as
it was all of them coming together to look after us that made for such a
great trip. Whether it was Oscar pointing out glaciers and sharing his
boundless enthusiasm for cycling, Cesar filling up our water bottles without
even being asked, or Jonathan sorting out the bikes and helping carry our
luggage, we were thoughtfully looked after at every point. It really felt
like nothing was too much trouble and they were all very keen to show us the
best of their beautiful country.

Question:
Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

Answer:
We came out a day early (Friday night) and it was worth having the extra time
to look around Bogota. It was also good to have an extra day to get used to
the time difference before heading off for the Sunday cycling – otherwise you
land at 4am and then head out for a steep hill ride on just a few hours
sleep.
Make the most of all the juices – many like Loulo and Guanabana are really
delicious. We really enjoyed trying them at the different rest stops.
Recommend organising a kitty approach for lunch and rest stops. It makes it
much easier than everyone trying to find small amounts of money at each stop.
If you want to visit Coffee Theme Park at Pueblo Tapao be aware the last
entry is at 4pm.
Do the Sunday hill ride – it really boosts your confidence and it’s brilliant
to be cycling with so many other riders who are all having a lot of fun! A
totally unique experience.

Question:
Is there anything else you would like to add?

Answer:
This trip had the best bikes of any Exodus trip I have been on. The staff
were great, really friendly and organised so everything went very smoothly
but you never got the feeling that you were ‘being organised’.
I much preferred being able to cycle point to point – the bus transfers on
other trips I have done can feel a bit disruptive to the cycling.
I’d also say that doing the Sunday hill ride in Bogota is a real confidence
booster and although there are some long uphill rides in the rest of the
trip, the support from the staff means that they are doable and the downhills
afterwards are amazing.
We added on some days at the end (to go to Cartagena and Tayrona National
Park – highly recommend both) and felt completely safe at all times. The
people of Colombia are really friendly and welcoming and it is them that make
the trip as much as the scenery.

Read full review

Cycle Colombia

Summary:
Point to point cycling on undulating roads, in beautiful warm scenery.

Rating: 5

Question:
What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

Answer:
Seeing the whole of Bogota coming out for a Sunday cycle, most of it in
Lycra.

Question:
What did you think of your group leader?

Answer:
She was lovely, very keen to show off Colombia and wanted to make us as happy
as possible. Nothing was too much trouble.

Question:
Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

Answer:
Fly out on the Fridays if you can make it to London in time as an extra day
in Bogota to recover and look around is worth it.
It’s cold in Bogota, especially at the top of the hill and the long down hill
so take a jacket. The rest of the cycling will be hot, around 30C, but not
too humid.
The evenings get cold during the two night on the Ranch so take a sweater and
long trousers.
Most of the hotels have Wifi in the communal areas, some of it quite quick.
Breakfast is mainly eggs and fruit, but Tatyana supplied those of us who
preferred cereal with oats after the first couple of days.
If you drink tea take tea bags, you can get the hot water, but the Colombian
tea is not good. Tatyana really like the English teas so take some for her to
try.

Question:
Is there anything else you would like to add?

Answer:
This trip is well organised, has good bikes and great staff. We added extra
days on to the beginning and end of the trip (it finishes on a Thursday!!).
Traveling both with Exodus and afterwards, independently, I felt completely
safe at all times.
Trip wise it was similar to the Nicaragua, Costa Rica & Panama trip, but much
better organised, with better staff and without the long bus transfers.

Read full review

cycling Colombia

Summary:
I had the most amazing holiday cycling through the beautiful coffee region of
Colombia, the challenging cycling was made so much easier by the amazing
scenery and the camaraderie and friendliness of the whole group. The holiday
lived up to all of my expectations and highlighted Colombia as a holiday
destination which is safe, friendly and welcoming.

Rating: 5

Question:
What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

Answer:
I couldn’t choose just one moment! The scenery everywhere we went was
breathtaking, long and sometimes steep climbs up mountains gave me the
opportunity to take in the atmosphere of the Colombian Andes, while
fantastic, fast, sweeping descents were exhilarating. The people that we met
on our journey were friendly and welcoming, it was amazing to see the huge
numbers of cyclists out on the roads. Our local guides and support team were
so attentive and supportive, they were committed to cycling and tourism in
Colombia.

Question:
What did you think of your group leader?

Answer:
Our Group leaders were Oscar and Tatiana, they were always smiling and
attentive to everyone’s needs. They made sure that we all had everything
that we needed and were all having the best holiday. Oscar was very skilled
at making sure that the group didn’t get too spread, while also allowing
individuals to go at their own pace. The whole team, including Jonathan the
mechanic and Cesar the driver, had a good vibe, they obviously got on well
together and all had a very positive outlook.

Question:
Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

Answer:
Be prepared for a challenging and rewarding cycling experience, but don’t be
put off by the challenging grade. We all made it to the top of the steepest
and toughest climb, and we were a mixed group with a variety of cycling
backgrounds.
I took too much cash with me (USD) and ended up changing money back when I
got home, there is not much to spend money on. Lunches are amazingly cheap
and all dinners were included in the trip price, wine was not available in
many places and beer was about £1 a bottle.

Question:
Is there anything else you would like to add?

Answer:
The trip lived up to all my expectations of a challenging bike ride in an
amazing country. I’m still buzzing a week later and ready to think about my
next Exodus adventure.

Read full review

Cycling Colombia (MAY)

Summary:
Coffee and cycling = Colombia. If you like both then you will love this
trip…even if you don’t like coffee but love challenging cycling then this
is the trip for you!

Visit areas hardly touched by foreign tourists, with stunning scenery and a
brilliant local team.

Rating: 5

Question:
What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

Answer:
There were many:
1. How friendly the Colombians were, and how safe we felt. Everyone was so
accommodating and incredibly hospitable.
2. The number of cyclists everywhere we went. Individuals or small groups, in
towns or in the countryside – the Colombians love cycling and cyclists!
3. The “optional” climb up Los Patios in Bogota and the carnival scene of the
Ciclovia. The climb is worth doing to experience the true Colombian cycling
atmosphere.
4. The challenging, but rewarding climb to Buenavista, made better by a
refreshing iced coffee at San Alberto (and a cheeky steep uphill section
afterwards!) followed by an exhilarating downhill section.
5. Riding to Salento as a beautiful rainbow emerged over the Cocora Valley –
made the climb less painful!
6. Trekking in the Cocora Valley on the rest day in Salento to see the
endemic wax palms and hummingbirds.

Question:
What did you think of your group leader?

Answer:
The whole team was excellent and worked incredibly well together.
Oscar is an experienced cyclist and organised everything perfectly, with spot
on timings for each day to get to the hotel/fincas with plenty of time to
relax before dinner. Nothing was too much. He also ensured that the speed
was tailored to the group capabilities, so that we stayed fairly close
together while cycling. His ever present smile and encouragement is most
appreciated, especially after a long climb!
Tatiana was fantastic in organising especially the food and money payments at
each lunch stop. Drinks miraculously appeared once we arrived at a
restaurant, and food was served quickly and efficiently.
Jonathan (the mechanic) and Cesar (the support driver) were both attentive in
making sure the bikes were well maintained and everyone was kept hydrated
with water.
You are also given an informative booklet which provides details on the route
for each day with an accompanying map and gradient chart (don’t be put off by
the gradient profiles – the views along the way are stunning and you won’t
realise that you have climbed so far).

Question:
Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

Answer:
1. This is a challenging trip, with long days and many hills, but all are
achievable. However, it is certainly worth preparing for this trip. The
steepest climb was up to Buenavista, but everyone made it. Other climbs are
longer, but not as steep.
2. Food is cheap (but good) with most lunches (including copious amounts of
different juices) ranging from 3,000 to 10,000 pesos – unless you want to use
an ATM change your money in Bogota as it is not easy to change once you are
on the road.
3. Carry a spare set of cycling clothing in your hand luggage so that you are
not caught short – 1 person from our group had a bag delayed en-route and we
had 2 bags delayed on the flight back.

Question:
Is there anything else you would like to add?

Answer:
The cycling in Colombia was amazing due to the scenery and the friendliness
of the people. During the trip we did not have any concerns about security or
safety, and felt safer than in many Latin and South American
countries…although the normal precautions apply.

Read full review

Thrills and hills in rural Colombia

Summary:
Incredible scenery, rewarding cycling, and a fascinating insight into rural
Colombia. We were the first group to do this trip and barely encountered any
other foreign tourists for the entire duration – the route winds through
picturesque valleys and mountains with drink stops either in local roadside
restaurants or small towns. No transfers, just pure cycling! The hotels were
well chosen on the whole, and nothing was too much trouble for the attentive
team of Colombian staff. The bikes were great and support was constantly
available if needed.

Rating: 5

Question:
What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

Answer:
Completing the ‘Los Patios’ optional ride straight after the Bogota ciclovia.
Arriving to the beautiful ranch near Salento and seeing a rainbow across
Cocora Valley. The climb to Buenavista was tough but something i’ll never
forget, as was the exhilarating downhill stage between Filandia and Quimbaya
on day 10. Being mistaken for (somewhat slower) members of the ‘Vuelta a
Colombia’ by curious locals on a daily basis was amusing! The destination
exceeded expectations, as did the route, and meeting such a friendly and
adventurous group was a real pleasure.

Question:
What did you think of your group leader?

Answer:
Oscar and Tatiana make a good team and are both experienced cyclists. On a
personal level they cared very much for each individual in the group and
worked tirelessly to ensure the logistics of each day were seamless. Jonatan
was the mechanic and his presence as a talented young cyclist was an
inspiring addition to the tour, i had a puncture one day and he promptly
sorted it out in a matter of minutes. Ceasar the driver must have filled my
water bottle up 200 times!

Question:
Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

Answer:
Weather – The weather is variable, but in general it is cool in Bogota and
hot (high 20s – low 30s) in the coffee region. The first couple of long days
cycling are in a valley which stays quite hot, but as you climb into the
mountains the nights get cooler. We experienced some high temperatures in
August but i was told that this heat wave was uncommon.

Food – As with other Latin American countries in the region, the staple diet
is rice, beans, plantain, grilled meats, fish, soup, plus the local bread
alternative ‘arepa’. Breakfasts were usually egg, coffee, juice and bread.
Lunches and dinners involved very similar choices and there isn’t a huge
amount of choice or variation. A surprise on the trip was the amount of
delicious fresh fruit juices that we had the opportunity to drink. The
lunchtime and drinks stops that we made were excellent value for money.

Money – You can either bring US Dollars and change them in Bogota (not
possible to anywhere else) or just withdraw Pesos directly from ATMs with
your card (best to check this with your bank before travelling though).
Lunchtime prices ranged from about 3000 to 14000 Pesos depending upon the
order. This is just a couple of Pounds. The average beer price in hotels was
around 4000 Pesos.

Language – The more words you can learn in Spanish beforehand the better. The
mechanic and driver don’t speak English so it enables more communication with
them, and of course the friendly local Colombians who are eager to interact.

Packing – Definitely bring either padded shorts or a saddle cover. Mosquitoes
weren’t an issue in August but have some repellent with you just in case.
There isn’t much opportunity for clothes washing but you can wash cycling
jerseys etc. in hotels and hang them up to dry if you prefer not to bring
lots of clothes changes with you. Remember your water bottle and helmet.
Don’t worry so much about bringing your trip notes as you are provided with a
detailed booklet at the start of the trip with ride profiles and
descriptions.

Question:
Is there anything else you would like to add?

Answer:
Colombia has had a troubled few decades and only in recent years has tourism
started to grow in areas away from the Caribbean coast. The country really
has it all in terms of natural beauty, a welcoming population, and
destinations as yet untouched by foreign visitors (especially on two
wheels!). Now is the perfect time to visit, and the added bonus of direct
overnight Avianca flights to/from London means that jet lag is minimal. This
trip is a great example of how the money spent on holidays directly benefits
the communities visited. We stayed in locally owned independent accommodation
and ate at small traditional restaurants. Oh and the coffee was delicious!

Read full review


Activity Levels


Activity Levels range from Leisurely to Tough, the grading takes into account the daily cycling distances and terrain, as well as any technical riding skill required. We also consider the number of cycling days as there can be a cumulative affect from tiredness on a longer trip and the type of accommodation used, as this can also influence your day to day recovery.

If you are in any doubt, please give us a call on +353-1-607 9900 or email us.


Activity level 1 - Leisurely Activity level 1: Leisurely

If you can ride a bike and enjoy gentle exercise, these are an ideal introduction to a cycling holiday. No routes are entirely flat, so expect some short climbs and descents. Maximum daily height gain is approximately 250 metres and daily distances rarely exceed 50kms (32 miles), any longer days are often optional.


Activity level 3 - Moderate Activity level 3: Moderate

Most people who enjoy a weekend riding at home will enjoy a Moderate trip. You need to be in good health and reasonably fit. Ideal for occasional cyclists, or as a more relaxed trip for fitter riders. Moderate off-road trips require no previous experience. Distances rarely exceed 70kms (43 miles) per day.


Activity level 5 - Challenging Activity level 5: Challenging

For any ride at this level, fitness is important. Challenging trips require confidence in your ability and physical condition. They are equivalent to an extended period of cycling at home. Previous mountain biking experience is essential for Challenging off road trips as they will involve some technical riding.


Activity level 7 - Tough Activity level 7: Tough

Previous experience of the cycling style or surface is a must as these routes have long cycling days and tougher terrain on both road and off road trips. You need complete confidence in your fitness and technical ability to cope with difficult or steep terrain, rough surfaces and longer distances. Ideal for those seeking a challenge!


Split grades

In order to provide more accuracy, where a trip falls between two grades we use an intermediate or ‘split’ grade, for example 2: Leisurely/Moderate.


Facebook
SHARE