Each of Colombia’s departments has several heritage sites that were significant to the battles that led to the country’s independence. That is why there is a net that includes 44 municipalities considered cultural assets. Learn about these destinations that you can’t miss:
1. Barichara (Santander) is 118 kilometers away from Bucaramanga. It is considered by many as “Colombia’s prettiest town”. Its name means “resting place” in Chibcha indigenous dialect, and makes reference to the peaceful atmosphere of its cobble streets and structures. It was founded in 1702, and has been a National Monument since 1978 due to its architectural and cultural jewels.
If you visit Barichara be sure to go to its squares, chapels, and parks. Additionally, try local dishes like goat, pepitoria, and ants (hormiga culona).
2. Girón (Santander) is a treasure full of Colombian history. It was founded in 1631, and became a National Monument in 1959 because of its beautiful white streets that make travellers relive Colombian colonial times. The town is at a pleasant 26 degrees Celsius, and it is 10 minutes away from Bucaramanga.
3. Honda (Tolima) is a beautiful town that combines traces of pre-Columbian, republican, and colonial times with a touch of Arab architecture. This warm municipality, located three hours away from Bogotá, housed Colombia’s first fishing port by the Magdalena River. This made it one of the country’s main corridors during the independence.
If you visit Honda, be sure to go to Las Trampas Road and the Navarro Bridge.
4. Villa de Leyva (Boyacá) is one of Colombia’s most visited municipalities. This is not only because of its proximity to Bogotá (3 hour road trip), but because of the architectural and cultural jewels in each and every one of its streets. The town was founded in 1572, and it is well known for its museums, festivals and handcrafts.
If you visit Villa de Leyva, be sure to go to its museums, and walk down its cobble streets.
5. Santa Fe de Antioquia (Antioquia) was founded in 1541. It is the town where the process of Antioquia’s colonization began. Located an hour from Medellín, its streets and people reflect the region’s idiosyncrasy.
If you visit Santa Fe de Antioquia, be sure to go to its traditional houses, museums, squares and the West Bridge.