Tourism in Amazonas Colombia
If you are planning to visit the Colombian Amazon, but you are not sure about all that you can do during your stay, we have compiled the most up-to-date information on those “unmissable” places, for you to get the most out of your trip through the Amazon jungle.
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Leticia is the gateway to the Colombian Amazon and is located 3 kilometers from the Alfredo Vásquez Cobo International Airport. This city is on the banks of the largest river in the world – the Amazon River.
It is also known for being the meeting point between three borders: Colombia, Brazil and Peru. Leticia offers its visitors different recreational opportunities such as ecological hikes, kayaking, canopy experience, and flora and fauna observation.
What to do in Leticia?
Although it doesn’t appear in the tourism travel guides for Colombia, Leticia is worth visiting! Once you are there, you won’t want to leave. You can just breathe in the peace and tranquility, and energy, typical of the middle of the gigantic Amazon rainforest.
Among the tourist sites in and around Leticia are the following:
Aguas Claras (clear waters) Natural Reserve is located only 20 kilometers from Leticia, on the road to the village of Tarapaca. During the rainy season, it can be accessed by river only. This reserve works for the conservation of the rainforest environment and ecotourism.
The Yahuarcaca Lakes located here can be navigated in kayaks rented by the tourist companies of the region. During the tour you can observe many animals native to the Amazon rainforest, such as monkeys, birds and fish.
One of the main attractions of this river route is the largest lotus in the world whose scientific name is Victoria Regia.
This National Park has an area of 15.1 hectares and is located 150 meters above sea level.
The reserve has trails through the tropical rainforest that can be hiked with specialized interpreters, in addition to visiting areas of fruit trees, streams, waterfalls and natural pools.
Activities for all visitors include bird watching, hiking ecological trails and lodging in the Umarí hostel, cabins and typical malokas (native long houses made by the indigenous communities, also refered to as shacks ).
This park is located in the center of Leticia and every afternoon a large number of parrots congregate there, looking for a place to rest in the trees.
The birds put on a show, which is an attraction for locals and visitors who delight in the behavior of these colorful animals.
If you go to Leticia, you will not want to miss this ecological park, located just seven kilometers outside the city. It is 29 hectares of nature reserve consisting of jungle trails, a botanical garden, an aquarium area and a restaurant.
The Mundo Amazónico Park is a place for the whole family and you can choose between ecological walks with guides, or visit the botanical gardens, ecotherapy tour and interactive cultural scenarios.
Visiting and touring the Isla de los Micos is one of the most attractive and favorite activities for tourists, since it involves walking through trails while learning about the different species of monkeys that live there.
This island has a total area of 45 hectares and is located 45 minutes by river from Leticia.
Another great place to enjoy the biodiversity in Amazonas-Colombia is in Amacayacu, which is a two hour boat ride along the Amazon river.
Aquatic plants such as the Victoria Regia can be seen on the calm waters of the river. (The Victoria Regina is a floating plant whose leaves can reach up to two meters in diameter.)
The park also has accommodations available for groups, families, couples or individuals who wish to spend a few days close to nature, enjoying the wild sounds and tranquility of the park.
Night canoe rides, hiking trails, visits to ethnic groups or trips on the houseboat are additional activities that can be enjoyed in the Amacayacu National Natural Park.
Tabatinga is a city near Leticia, but part of the Brazilian territory, located in the middle of the tropical forest.
The entire region is covered by forests and, hydrographically, it belongs to the Amazon basin, being fed by the Solimões, Içá, Japurá rivers and several of their tributaries.
Although Portuguese is the official language of Brazil, Amazonian Spanish is also spoken in Tabatinga because of its border status with Leticia, Colombia and the Republic of Peru.
Tabatinga is a city of passage, where people usually go in order to cross the Amazon. In fact, it is not a tourist city of great interest.
Puerto Narino is another impressive city about 80 kilometers from Leticia. When you are there, you have the feeling you are in a large, natural park.
Some of the activities that can be enjoyed in Puerto Narino are visiting the Mirador. The Mirador is located in city center. From there you can see the whole town!
You can also visit the Museum of the Natütama Foundation, which is responsible for raising awareness, and educating both locals and visitors about the need to care for, and protect, the environment.
In the same area is the Wochine Reserve, a huge farm that has ponds with various animals, the Victoria flower, and a large ceiba tree, more than 150 years old. The ponds feature alligators, turtles, and fish. One of the fish, the pirarucu is in danger of extinction.
You will also want to visit the Aguas Rojas, a small pond of red water, that gets its color from the roots of a tree.
Daniel Osorio holds a BA in Social Communication with a mention in Communication for Humanistic Development (Universidad de Los Andes, 2005). Film and TV director and screenwriter. Specialist in Digital Marketing (SEO, SEM, Adwords, Adsense). General Manager (CEO) at DMT Agency. He is the founding editor of the portal delamazonas.com among others.
This post is also available in: Español (Spanish)