Traveling across Colombia can always turn into an adventure depending what route you take and how much you want to spend.
After our time in Santa Marta we decided to continue our adventures through Colombia in the infamous city of Medellin. I cannot wait to get into the details of our time in Medellin and how much fun it actually was even though I am not the biggest fan of major metropolitan cities in my travels.
How To Travel In Colombia
Now Colombia is quite a big country at roughly twice the size of Texas with about double the population.
There are a few ways to travel between cities and depending on where you want to go the best option is not always the same.
Plane Travel in Colombia
Plane travel in Colombia is quite robust and somehting we did quite often without any real issues. This is most likely the fastest way to get across Colombia if you are wanting to visit major cities such as Cartagena, Santa Marta, Medellin, Bogoto, Cali, etc.
Latam and Avianca are two of the largest airlines servicing Colombia and are actually the only ones we used during our travels in the country. The planes where always clean, the service was shockingly better than U.S. airlines and the overall experience was pleasent.
Flight prices are also very reasonable and we spend around $68 for our one way flights from Santa Marta to Medellin for a flight that took just over an hour. The Santa Marta airport is also a surprisingly new and well taken care off airport right near the northern coast of the city. There where a few shops inside for food and plenty of seats to wait for our flight. This was definitely not the same airport we landed into Cartagena and a pleasant surprise for some tired travelers.
Bus Travel in Colombia
Bus travel in colombia is extremely popular and something everyone should experience once while travelling through the country. Now to be honest this is definitely not the form of travel you should be on for a short trip since it is quite time consuming. On the other hand it can be useful to take a night bus in order to save money on a plane ticket and hotel room.
The price difference is rather stark since our bus from Medellin to Armenia cost around 50,000 COP which is right about $12-13 USD. This bus was also like flying first class on ground transportaiton with plush leather seats that even myself at 6’4″ had no problem spreading out and being comfortable.
The best bus company per my research and personal expereince ends up being Flota Ocidental which has reletaively new buses and great service across most of the country. The prices are very fair in my opinion but the website is a HOT MESS to say the least. I would recommend to just visit a local bus staiton and purchase tickets in person at the Flota Ocidental kiosk this guarantess you get the right bus and the right price.
Why should you travel by bus in Colombia
I am a big propopnent of seeing a country for all it has to offer and I think a good bus trip really exposes you to more of the country than just flying. While I dont recommend to take the bus to every new city you want to visit, unless you just have weeks to spend. I do think one bus ride between two major cities is worth it to enjoy the country side beauty of Colombia.
Should I be worried about travelling in Colombia
Overall travelling in Colombia is rather easy and inexpensive no matter what method you choose. You will most likely be able to find a plane or bus to take you almost to any corner of the country and that is what makes travelling in this place so easy. Colombia has come a long way from the drug lord cartel days to being a tourist mecca for South America.
There is plenty of information online for bus times if you visit the Flota Ocidental bus website or if you visit one of the partner sites such as Rom2Rio or BusBud, see links below:
When checking for flights I highly recommend Google Flight or my favorite option when abroad Skyscanner. I tend to have better luck using Skyscanner when abroad and it seems to search more flights across the local regional airlines than Google Flights. While I do check for the flights on Skyscanner I always make sure to purchase the flight directly from the airline website to confirm I am getting the correct price.
Now its your turn to decide, will you fly across Colombia or are you going to go on a bus adventure!
Have you travelled through Colombia before? What was your choice of transportation?
Is this your first time in Colombia? Check out my blog posts on Colombia travel, where to stay and what to do HERE!
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