(Bogota, Cartagena, Santa Marta)
From the violet mist that shrouds the Andean mountains to the lush green of the jungle canopy and the sparkling turquoise of the Caribbean coast, you’ll be seduced by the rich colors of Colombia.
You’ll be stunned by the unexpected beauty of Bogotá – Colombia’s bustling capital city – where the modern skyscrapers of the CBD quickly dissipate into a labyrinth of colonial wonders in the streets of old La Candelaria. Visit the most important gold museum in the world; travel to Zipaquira to explore the incredible underground cathedral carved into a salt mine; wander the cobblestone streets of Cartagena on the Caribbean coast and explore the fortresses, museums and churches of its historic old town; view the dense jungle of the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta mountains; and take some time to relax on the remote sandy beaches of Santa Marta.
This premium trip presents a luxury collection of immaculate hotels that features charming colonial guest houses and stunning mountain retreats. Your experienced team of local guides and private drivers will be at your side to ensure an enriching, safe and seamless travel experience as you discover the many natural and historical highlights of South America’s best-kept secret, and interact with the country’s joyful locals who delight in sharing their rich cultural traditions.
Enjoy a personalized vacation that best suits your needs, developed by one of our experienced destination experts. Relax during your trip with our 24/7 support and expert local guidance.
In order to confirm your trip you must submit copies of your passports for Colombia bookings.
Upon your arrival you will be met by a local representative who will help you locate your vehicle.
Enjoy a private airport transfer with professional driver and guide.
Today you will be picked up in La Candelaria by private vehicle and guide to begin your tour. La Candelaria is Bogota’s heart and soul, from its humble beginnings this is the oldest part of the city and the Plaza Bolivar (Main Square) are high on any visitor’s agenda. The Square is the focal point of this historic part of the city. Surrounding the square are several important Colonial and Republican style buildings including the Palace of Justice and Colombian Congress. The Plaza is also home to the Mayor’s office and the Primary Cathedral of Bogota that dominates an entire corner. Standing proud in the plazas centre is a statue of Simon Bolivar (Founder of Colombian independence) the first public monument to be erected in the city. As you wander the streets of La Candelaria away from the main square, your guide will not only explain the history of Bogota but also the intricacies of current Colombian culture and daily life. There will be time for a refreshment stop in one of the cities coffee houses.
The Botero Museum or Donation is a permanent exhibition of works of art by Fernando Botero, Colombia’s most famous artist who’s "oversized" art is instantly recognisable. There are several rooms over 2 floors with displays of his work both on canvas and sculpture. The museum not only houses work by Botero but also other world famous artists such as Dali, Monet and Van Gogh. Next door is the Casa de la Moneda, or mint is home to a museum that takes you on a tour of the history of Bogota through the currency and money used in Colombia. With your guide the next stop will be the Gold Museum which is situated on the northeast corner of the Parque Santander. The Museum is within the premises of the Banco de la Republica, and is one of the finest collections of Pre Hispanic gold in the world. This is a "must see" when in Bogotá, with more than 35,000 pieces of pre-Colombian gold work in the collection. Many of the works are said to be unsurpassed by goldsmiths of today and it’s easy to understand when you allow yourself time to study examples such as the Balsa Muisca (Offering boat). This golden raft is one of the focal point of the display and was the driving force in the Spaniards quest to find El Dorado.
A short drive or interesting walk from the centre of the old town takes you to the base of the hill that leads up to the hill top view point and monastery of Monserrate. The summit can be reached by either funicular railway or cable car. From the highest point the view across the city will enable you to see the different sectors of Bogota. From La Candelaria and its terracotta tiled roofs to the high rise business sector and then on across the sabana (flat plains) and off in to the distance. The new convent is a pilgrimage site for many Colombians whom make their way past the fourteen Stations of the Cross until reaching the convent. There are a few artisan shops, with others selling snacks and refreshments.
Domestic flight between Bogota and Medellin. The flight duration is approximately 1 hour.
Includes airport transfer with private vehicle, professional driver and local guide from Airport to Hotel or within city and vice versa
You will be met at your hotel by your bilingual guide to commence your private guided 4 hour walking tour through the streets of Cartagena. Your tour will take through the old town under the Puerta Del Reloj (Clock tower entrance), a symbol of Cartagena, into the Plaza de los Coches. Your guide will divulge the myths and legends, histories and stories of Cartagena from ancient time’s right up to the present. From the Plaza San Pedro Claver with its stunning Church, on through to the Plaza Bolivar with its shady areas, where a fresh Lemon juice can be enjoyed whilst watching the world go by. Enjoy a historical visit to the Inquisition Palace, considered one of the most elegant buildings in Cartagena, characterized by its outstanding colonial architecture. Throughout its interior, visitors to the museum will find instruments of torture and prison cells. The inquisition used this structure as its central command, a stronghold where criminals were held. Cartagena is steeped in history and a delight to stroll the streets with your own personal encyclopaedia of knowledge guiding you from one interest to the other.
You will be met by your guide and walked to your vehicle to commence your tour of the principal sights around Cartagena. Castillo San Felipe and El Convento de La Popa are two of Cartagena’s most spectacular sites. You will set off first to the Castillo San Felipe. This fort is the largest Spanish fortification in the Americas and dominates the old town. The first fortification on the site was started in 1536 and further extended over the following 200 years mostly by African slave labour. Underneath this amazing structure you will find a labyrinth of tunnels. The sun soaked fortification seeps tales of old for every traveller and the tunnels (some of which are lit and accessible to visitors) and ramparts are a living breathing history book. The fortress possesses intriguing tales of failed invasion by the British and other would be attackers. One very famous defence of the city was by Blas de Lazos against Edward Vernon and his fleet of 186 ships and 23,600 men. Blas with only one eye, one leg and one hand fought off Vernon with his modest band of 6 ships and 3,600 soldiers. From the fort you will continue on in your private vehicle to the Convento La Popa. The hill is the highest point in the city and commands excellent views of the bay, old town and Caribbean Sea beyond. Started initially as a humble wooden chapel but later replaced by a more solid construction that was fortified two centuries later. Enjoy the flower filled patio and the views that stretch all over the city and wander through the cool patio and interior of the convent. Throughout your trip your guide will make the sites come to life as he explains not only their history but also their relevance and importance to the Cartagena of today.
Includes Bilingual guide, coffee break and entrance fees
Private transfer and vehicle between Cartagena and Santa Marta. Approx: 4 hours.
Santa Marta is world famous for the beauty of its geography, for the Sierra Nevada Mountains, the highest coastal mountain range in the world which sweep down to the sea where you will find the Tayrona National Park. From the entrance of the national park, you will start your walk along natural pathways through the semi tropical jungle vegetation towards the beaches with your local guide highlighting the information on the vegetation, animals and eco system. Walking along one of the spectacular beaches you may possibly have the opportunity to take a swim depending on the condition of the seas. Lunch is included on your tour.
Enjoy a private transfer from Santa Marta to Cartagena. Approx. 4 hours.
The Abadia Colonial Hotel is located in the historical center of Bogota and features charm of the colonial era. The Abadia Colonial Hotel has been carefully renovated. respecting the architecture and history of this beautiful city. The details, finishes, and indoor gardens, which still retain their native trees, make the Abadia Colonial Hotel a cozy place where visitors can immerse themselves in the subtle magic of Candelaria histórica.
Ananda Boutique Hotel, a space that conveys the spirit of luxury and comfort in perfect harmony, the perfect place to reach that ultimate state of happiness. Ananda Boutique Hotel is located in the heart of the walled city of Cartagena de Indias, near the Plaza de Santo Domingo. The Ananda Boutique Hotel is a restored colonial house of the sixteenth century, in which everything is designed and ready to surprise, as the old wells, and original water tanks are exposed to the public and turned into an open room, or the traditional colonial viewpoint from which you can see amazing views of the city. The beautiful suites (Luxury, Deluxe & Superior Junior Suite) are charming in every detail, have been lovingly restored and upgraded by a recognized team of designers. Ananda Boutique Hotel is a place, is a state of mind. Simply dazzling.
Hotel Merecumbe is located a few kilometres from the Tayrona Natural Park. Merecumbe offers sophisticated eco-habs with very modern interiors made of totally natural materials like wood, stone and palm. Merecumbe was born as a dream ... from a deep desire to live in the countryside, leaving the city life to change it by green landscapes and fresh air. From the cold weather at Sisga’s Dam, going through the cobbled streets of Barichara, discovering ecological farms in the beautiful coffee-growers axis, getting to see the storms in the Pacific coast, to the untamable Guajira... a long journey in which you will fall in love with the green colors from the Sierra Nevada in Santa Marta and its amazing beaches. It is the ideal place for travelers who are looking for a special accommodation in a total natural area, where you can enjoy ecotourism embedded in the full comfort of high quality amenities.
December 12, 2014
"We are back. We did have a wonderful time with our daughter and I certainly had no reason at all for being at all nervous that things would not go smoothly. Everyone associated with our time in Iguazu Falls was helpful, more than pleasant and always on time. I thought originally that we could manage such a trip on our own. But when we got there and saw the hassles we would have run into with the visas, border crossings, transportation and such, I realized that going the way we did was the wise choice. Absolutely we would travel with you again. And if anyone asks about the best way to see that part of the country, I would not hesitate to recommend KT. "
Janet Huebert ,
December 12, 2014
"Well, Cindy, we’ve been home for a week but I can’t stop replaying every day of our wonderful holiday in my head! It was all that I had hoped for and MORE! We enjoyed all of the locations we visited – the beauty of the landscapes, the sight of wildlife, the rich culture & interesting history of Argentina & the outgoing, positive attitude of its people. Our guides were terrific – so friendly & knowledgeable & helpful & enthusiastic! We had no delays or difficulties & our accommodations were outstanding. Have I mentioned that it was a FABULOUS holiday??!!! My thanks to you for coordinating, booking, confirming and generally taking care of our requests in planning our adventure. "
Ann Schiller ,
December 12, 2014
"Fabulous trip to Machu Picchu, Cusco and Lima. Trip of a lifetime with a sensational group of guides, drivers, and transfer staff! Loved the Sanctuary Lodge! A must! Thank you, Nella Huaringa, for planning this amazing journey! Thanks for making sure we didn't miss a thing on our itinerary even when we lost a travel day, due to a broken airplane that turned back midair, on our way to Lima. We appreciate your service above and beyond. "
December 12, 2014
"Wow! All my life, I have planned and organized our trips, requiring considerable research and contact time--not to mention, most significantly, all the stress involved at each destination to make sure all connections are made. This time, I put it in the hands of some extremely capable people--and sat back and relaxed. And relax I did! We were booked into full-service, quality accommodations at all times; our transport and tour guidance were all on an individual, private basis, except where public transportation was in order; and--most valuable to us--we were met and assisted through all travel/hotel connections. We truly felt pampered. At one point, in fact, we had a problem with an immigration paper that we had lost, and a Kensington representative personally accompanied us through the whole process of replacing it--even though we were officially "on our own" that day. That's what makes the difference--the responsibility and accountability toward clients. Kudos to Kensington and to our representative, Brandi Merchant. We are already planning more travel and see no reason to look any further than to an agency that has earned our trust. "
December 12, 2014
"We had a wonderful time on our trip. The accommodations were all great. The guides and drivers were all very pleasant and knowledgeable. We were very happy with our choice of destinations and with the way the trip was organized. It was a lot of flying in two weeks but well worth it. Erika was able to accommodate a short-notice addition (Nazca Lines) to our trip which we appreciated. Thank you Erika for your help. Great trip!!"
Christina Adams ,
April 21, 2014
"I know it's silly to give all 10's, obviously every trip has it's ups and downs, but if it hadn't been for our Kensington Tours planning, guides and drivers we would have been lost! It was wonderful to be out in a strange new environment yet know we had a safety net and a friendly face. The places we visited were awesome but I think we'll remember most the people that we met. Thank you and I'll send photos soon! Sincerely, Christina Adams"
Frank Manna ,
April 21, 2014
"Our guided transfers were exceptionally accommodating even though our flights were considerably delayed. The Annavillanas Jungle Lodge was spectacular for location, accommodations and food. The Rio Carnival experience was unique and unforgettable and our seats were wonderful. Loved the location of our hotel in Rio.......right on the street of Copacabana Beach.......fantastic. "
Vivian Jennings ,
April 21, 2014
"Very pleased with organization. Not having to worry about connections or arrangements is wonderful. Great selection with hotels, Coral 1 and Napo Wildlife. Kensington puts all the details together to ensure a wonderful trip. Highly recommend the Galapagos and Amazon. "
Daniel More ,
April 21, 2014
"All was great. Guides were knowledgeable, personable, friendly... that's what really made the trip."
Marlin Barad ,
April 21, 2014
"Sofia, thank you for putting together a great trip. We certainly enjoyed ourselves very much. The planning and care was excellent. We hope we can do another trip with you all soon. Marlin Barad"
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