Colombia

Having languished in the tourist wilderness for almost two decades, Colombia has come back with a vengeance. Rapidly earning a reputation as one of the most exciting new travel destinations in South America, it can boast palm-fringed Caribbean beaches, snow-capped Andean peaks and a richness of national parks and rainforests that beggars belief. From the cosmopolitan streets of Bogotá, to the cobbled alleys of its colonial outposts, you can indulge in everything from mud bathing in volcanoes, trekking on glaciers or sipping Cuba Libras in the bars of Cartagena.

The only South American country with a coastline on both the Pacific and the Caribbean, Colombia lies just to the south of Panama, providing the gateway between South and Central America. Hemmed in on three sides by Venezuela, Brazil and Ecuador, it was named in honour of Christopher Columbus, despite the fact that Columbus never actually visited the country. Infused with an almost dream-like quality that obviously inspired the author, Gabriel García Márquez, Colombia offers up a vast array of activities from jungle walks and archaeological ruins, to mountain treks, whale watching and coffee plantations. After so long in the wilderness, it is great to welcome it back!

James

Taste what could well be the world's best coffee at Hacienda San Alberto.

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