Have you wanted to travel to South America but can’t decide which country to visit? Well, Colombia was rated the happiest place in the world as of 2021. Wouldn’t you want to see the happiest place in the world? You can! It’s time to pack up your things and travel to the beautiful area in Colombia. But, before you grab your suitcase and sunglasses, continue to read below for some more interesting facts about Colombia.
Interesting Facts About Colombia
Colombia is a safe, beautiful, and tourist-friendly country. A perfect destination for anyone looking for fun and relaxation. We hope the fun facts about Colombia help entice you to visit sometime soon. Before you travel to Colombia, check out this guide, which explains in great detail all other things you may want to know beforehand. Topics include food, plane tickets, budgeting, and more. Keep reading for some interesting facts about Colombia!
1. Colombia Has More Than 4,000 Species of Orchids
An interesting fact about Colombia is that it is one of the largest flower producers in the world. 70% of the flowers are imported to the United States. But, out of the grand 4,000 orchid species, 1,500 are only found in Colombia. It is a botanist’s dream to research the 1,500 orchids unique to the country.
The orchids come in different shapes, sizes, and colors. But, the most popular shades of orchid are purple, magenta, and pink. An orchid named Cattleya Trianae is the national flower of Colombia. It is only fitting that Colombia’s national flower would be an orchid. The orchid, is named after José Jerónimo Triana, a Colombian naturalist and botanist.
There is a wide variety of orchids in Colombia because of the warm climate. The orchids thrive in a warm climate because they are not threatened by extreme heat or cold. This is because Colombia’s location is right on the equator. Thus, making it the perfect climate for thousands of one-of-a-kind orchids to grow. If you visit Colombia, you must visit local shops that sell native orchids or explore natural life.
2. Colombia Is the Most Biodiverse Country on the Planet
Another interesting fact about Colombia is its unique location. The location makes the country known as the most biodiverse. Part of the Amazon rain forest, the Andes mountains, and the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta mountains encompasses Colombia. It is open to parts of the Pacific and Caribbean seas.
On top of that, it is named a tropical location because of its location to the equator. Colombia is the perfect breeding ground for all plants and animals. Colombia has about 60,000 different species! If you travel to Colombia, you will be guaranteed to see at least a few of them. Colombia has the most bird, butterfly, and amphibian populations compared to anywhere else in the world. If you are a lover of nature and landscape, Colombia is the perfect destination for you.
3. Colombia Has 60 National Parks
Colombia’s national parks combine many different types of terrain. From forest, aquatic, mountainous, deserts, and more, it has something for every nature lover. One of the biggest national parks is the Unesco Worl Heritage Site of Chiribiquete National Park which is otherwise known as, “The Maloca of the Jaguar”. It spreads over 4.3 million hectares. This national park covers the Orinoquia, Guyana, Amazonia, and North Andes provinces.
Thousands of different species of animals and plants inhabit the park. Many species are native to Colombia and threatened, such as the jaguar. Chiribiquete National Park is well known for its heritage purposes. The rock walls in the park terrain contain ancient rock paintings, some of which date back to 20,000 BC. It is said that more than 70,000 figures have been documented on the walls of the 60 rock shelters that are in the park. Aside from Chiribiquete National Park, there are many other fascinating parks to visit, such as Tayrona National Park, Coral Islands Natural Park, Old Providence McBean Lagoon, Sierra Nevada del Cocuy, and more. Colombia’s rich environment allows nature lovers to have some nonstop exploring.
4. Colombia Has Some of the Most Popular Tourist Cities
Colombia is well known for its diverse and tourist-friendly cities. Cartagena is one of the most popular cities in Colombia, located on the Caribbean coast. The city is a very well-known fishing village, containing a rich history with old colonial architecture. Although it is a city, its border to the water creates a peaceful atmosphere. With local shops, restaurants, and an ocean view, it is the perfect place to relax.
Another famous city for tourism is Bogota. This city is more commercial, containing shops, theaters, churches, schools, and more. The area is diverse in Spanish and English speakers as well. People consider Cartagena and Bogota as two of the safest spots for tourists. The cities of Colombia are tourist-friendly and beautiful. Be sure to visit a few of them while you visit Colombia.
5. Colombia Is Home to the “Liquid Rainbow”
The Caño Cristales river, also referred to as the liquid rainbow, is 100km long. It changes its colors by the season. The colors range anywhere from shades of red, blue, and yellow, to orange, and green. This is just another of the many interesting facts about Colombia. The river’s rainbow-like colour does not occur anywhere else in the world. It is unique to Colombia.
A plant known as Macarenia Clavigera is responsible for the vibrant color-changing waters. With the right amount of sunlight, the aquatic plant can produce its beautiful colors. But, in a drought or a colder season, the aquatic plant will go into hibernation, leaving the river colorless. If you plan to visit the Liquid Rainbow, visit during the summertime. The area is safe for tourists too!
6. Colombia Has the Second Most celebrated Holidays in the World
Another fact about Colombia is that they celebrate 18 national holidays a year. Although most of the 18 holidays are religiously affiliated, all Colombians partake in the holiday celebrations. What is unique about the Colombian holiday cycle is that it changes every year. This is because it follows the lunar cycle. But, there are exceptions to the lunar cycle, such as Christmas, Easter, Colombian Independence Day, and the Immaculate Conception which are celebrated on the same day each year.
During Colombian holidays the law requires that all Colombian employers give their employees a day off work. So, each year Colombian workers can be guaranteed at least 18 days off a year. Easter, on the other hand, has different criteria. Everyone takes off the week for Easter, and so businesses are closed for a week. Depending on when you travel to Colombia, you may travel during one of the 18 different holidays.
7. The Colombian National Anthem Plays Twice a Day
According to Colombian law, the national anthem or Himno Nacional de la República de Colombia plays twice a day. It plays once at 6 am and again at 6 pm. The law requires that TV broadcasts and radio stations do this every day. They have to follow a specific manner of how the national anthem plays too.
It must play with the first chorus verse and, then it will play again. The national anthem plays in this way in all other public events such as sports or political campaigns. Since it plays so often, every Colombian citizen knows how to sing it. If you travel to Colombia, you will likely learn it and sing along too. Few countries will play their national anthem daily, making it yet another interesting fact about Colombia.
8. The National Sport of Colombia Is Tejo
Tejo is a fun game that happens to be the national sport of Colombia. But how do you play Tejo? Well, the sport is related to bowling in a sense. People will throw tejos or a weighted steel disk towards a metal ring. The ring contains gunpowder pouches, which will explode if you hit them. Yes, explode. The game is loud and untamed. It is a fan favorite by men and women, especially those that enjoy drinking a cold beer.
Where there is Tejo, there is beer. The best part about Tejo is that you can play it by yourself or with a group of up to six people. The points are divided into three. If you hit the metal ring and it explodes you will receive 9 points, which is the most a person can get. If you hit the metal ring but it does not explode that makes up 6 points. If you somehow manage to explode the gunpowder pockets but not land on the metal ring then you will get 3 points. If you and your friends or family decide to play in teams, be prepared because it is a tradition that the losing team buys beers for the winning team. If you have an interest in some outgoing and reckless fun, Tejo is the game for you.
9. Colombia Has Two of the Worlds Largest Festivals
Another fun fact is that Colombia has the world’s largest salsa festival, otherwise known as Feria de Cali. People refer to Cali as the salsa capital of the world. It is held from December 25th to December 30th every year. This five-day festival contains grand musical, dance, and art performances. There are always different types of music, but the most popular, of course, is the amazing Latin music.
There are many concerts like Superconecierto, the most popular musical event. During Superconcierto, there are several themes of dance both, international and National. Feria de Cali also has Salsodromo, the street carnival. The carnival contains traditional Colombian food, treats, and sweets. They have art, jewelry, luxury cars, and more. It is a cultural event filled with music and fun.
Colombia has the world’s largest flower festival too. Of course, being the top flower producer in the world, the title is fitting. The flower festival takes place in Medellin. It consists of flower exhibitions, a parade, and local flower growers who come together to share what they grow. People who celebrate the festival will decorate their homes in beautiful flower decor to match the theme. During the festival, there are many other worthwhile events like an orchid expo, fireworks, art exhibitions, horse fairs, and more. The flower festival celebrates Colombia’s biodiversity and displays the most stunning flowers.
10. Colombia Is Number 3 in the World for Coffee
Coffee lovers will want to visit Colombia. The country is famously known for its rich brew. Colombia is a world exporter of coffee, having over 50,000 coffee bean farms/ plantation areas to produce your joy in a cup. The climate in Colombia makes the country one of the best locations in the world to sell and grow its coffee beans.
People describe their beans as very well-balanced and tasty. Colombia coffee grounds are made of 100% Coffea arabica (arabica). Workers put extra care into handpicking the beans, with a method called “cherry-picking”. They carefully examine the coffee trees until they think the beans are ready. The ethical sourcing of the coffee beans makes the coffee brew desirable. If you love coffee, you must visit Colombia.
Visit Colombia Today
Now that you have read a few interesting facts about Colombia, you should feel ready to embark on your trip to Colombia. Traveling to Colombia will be an experience you will never forget. But, will you take advantage of this opportunity? For a couple of years, traveling abroad appeared uncertain. Now is the time to travel and experience the world. Or at least, for now, start small and travel to Colombia today.