The Best Areas to Stay in Eje Cafetero (Coffee Region), Colombia

Best Areas to Stay in Eje Cafetero, Colombia

Where to Stay in Eje Cafetero – A Guide to the Colombian Coffee Region

Colombia’s Eje Cafetero, also known as the Colombian Coffee Region or Coffee Cultural Landscape, is a UNESCO Cultural Heritage Site. This popular tourist corridor encompasses the coffee-growing Colombian Andes departments of Caldas, Risaralda, and Quindío and is especially famous for its mountainous landscapes, unique local culture, and, of course, its coffee culture. In this post, we will explore the best areas to stay in the Colombian Coffee Region.

This incredible Colombian region is home to some of the country’s best national preserves, thermal springs, charming little villages, high-altitude lakes, and historic coffee-growing haciendas.

Hacienda Accommodation

Many traditional farms in the Coffee Region have been transformed into accommodation, so if you want to experience the world of coffee and Andean nature firsthand, we recommend these hotels:

Colombia’s Coffee Belt is one of the most visited tourist destinations in the country. From a tourist perspective, this expansive region can be divided into two categories:

First, you have the department capitals Manizales, Armenia, and Pereira. These medium-sized cities can’t be considered tourist destinations by themselves but are the main gateways to explore the Eje Cafetero region whether you’re flying there or traveling by bus.

On the other hand, most tourist attractions, coffee haciendas, and natural sights are located in the region’s small villages. Towns like Salento, Filandia, or Santa Rosa de Cabal are the places to go for the real Colombian coffee experience.

Because of its inland location in Colombia’s Central Andes, Colombia’s Coffee Belt has a tropical climate. Average temperatures vary depending on the altitude and usually hover between 15 and 28 ºC. Rains can occur at any time throughout the year, but the rainiest months are April, May, October, and November. The best time to visit Colombia’s Coffee Belt is in January when it’s hot enough to enjoy the outdoor activities without having to worry about it raining.

To get to Colombia’s Coffee Belt by air, you can choose to fly into Pereira’s Matecaña International Airport, Manizales La Nubia Airport, or Armenia’s El Edén International Airport. All of these airports offer frequent non-stop connections to the main cities in Colombia, including daily flights to Medellín and Bogotá operated by Avianca.

To travel between the cities in the Colombian Coffee Belt, several medium and long-distance bus companies connect the department capitals and larger towns. See long-distance bus routes, schedules & fares.

Additionally, the department capitals also offer taxi lines and ride-sharing apps.

The best area to stay in Colombia’s Coffee Belt is Salento. This quaint little village offers colonial architecture, great restaurants, a lively nightlife and is a stone’s throw away from Valle del Cocora National Park and several coffee-growing haciendas. See accommodation in Salento.

Other great options to consider when choosing the best location in Eje Cafetero include Filandia and Santa Rosa de Cabal.

Another option is to stay in the larger cities and take day-trips to the small villages. In that case, you should look into the department capitals of Manizales, Armenia, and Pereira.

Keep reading to find out more about the best location in Colombia’s Coffee Belt for tourists.

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The Best Areas to Stay in the Colombian Coffee Belt

Salento is a small Andean town located in the department of Quindío.

This small village is famous for its tranquil atmosphere and picturesque colonial-style architecture.

The town is centered around Plaza Bolívar. Around this square you can find the church of Nuestra Señora del Carmen, as well as several restaurants and bars.

Carrera 6, also called Calle Real, is considered Salento’s main street and houses most of the souvenir shops, hotels, pensions and coffee shops.

At the end of the Carrera 6 you’ll find the access to Alto de la Cruz viewpoint, located on a nearby hill and offering impressive views of the town and its surroundings.

Salento is also the main gateway to explore the Cocora Valley, an interesting protected area within the Los Nevados natural park with many hiking trails and where you can see Quindío wax palms, the national tree of Colombia.

Salento is a small town, so walking is the best way to get around its historic streets. To get to the Cocora Valley, you can hire taxi-Jeeps, locally called yipaos, directly at the main square of the town.

The accommodation offer in Salento consists of a mix of backpacker hostels, budget hotels and mountain eco-hotels that can range from super basic to luxurious.

Salento also offers various accommodations in coffee farms around the town.

Best areas to stay in Eje Cafetero - Salento
Best areas to stay in Eje Cafetero – Salento
Where to stay in the Colombian Coffee Region Salento & Valle del Cocora
Where to stay in the Colombian Coffee Region Salento & Valle del Cocora
Accommodation in Salento - Click on the map to see all accommodation in this area
Accommodation in Salento – Click on the map to see all accommodation in this area

Why is this a recommended area to stay in Eje Cafetero:

  • Lovely mountain village
  • Colonial architecture
  • Cocora Valley

2. Filandia

Filandia is located in the north of the department of Quindío, next to the “Autopista del Café”.

Like Salento, Filandia stands out for its small Andean town atmosphere, colorful colonial-style houses, and many entertainment options.

The main tourist attraction in Filandia is the Mirador Colina Iluminada, a 27-meter high wooden structure and panoramic observation tower from which you can see the surrounding mountains and valleys. On clear days, you can even see the city of Pereira, several municipalities in Quindío, and some in Valle del Cauca.

Other attractions in Filandia include Bolívar park, María Inmaculada Church or the craft museum Centro de Interpretación “Bejuco Al Canasto”.

The nearby Museum of Record and Music is a quaint local attraction with vintage phonographs and jukeboxes.

Although Filandia and Salento are both very touristy towns, the atmosphere in Filandia is more relaxed and less crowded, making it an excellent alternative for those seeking tranquility.

Best towns to stay in the Colombian Coffee Region (Eje Cafetero) - Filandia
Best towns to stay in the Colombian Coffee Region (Eje Cafetero) – Filandia
Accommodation in Filandia - Click on the map to see all accommodation in this area
Accommodation in Filandia – Click on the map to see all accommodation in this area

Why is this a recommended area to stay in Eje Cafetero:

  • Lovely little town
  • Adventure sports
  • Nature and typical architecture

3. Armenia

Armenia is the capital of the Quindío department and one of the most popular places in Eje Cafetero.

Located in the heart of the coffee region, Armeniais the ideal place to travel to the other towns and cities that make up the Colombian Coffee Belt.

The heart of this city is Plaza Bolívar , next to which you’ll find the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception, which stands out for its avant-garde style.

The Quimbaya Gold Museum displays a large collection of pre-Columbian handicrafts, mainly from the Quimbaya civilization, in gold, ceramics, stone, carved woods and other materials.

Avenida Bolívar runs throughout the city and connects the center with the elegant neighborhoods of its eastern area.

The beautiful Parque De La Vida has walking paths, a duck pond, a playground and light shows.

To the northwest of the city lies the Parque del Café, a theme park and museum with exhibits that detail the history, culture and process of growing and producing coffee.

Armenia is very well connected by local and long-distance buses.

Best location in Eje Cafetero - Armenia
Best location in Eje Cafetero – Armenia
Accommodation in Armenia - Click on the map to see all accommodation in this area
Accommodation in Armenia – Click on the map to see all accommodation in this area

Why is this a recommended area to stay in Eje Cafetero:

  • Excellent transport links
  • Quimbaya Museum
  • Plaza Bolivar

4. Manizales

Manizales is the capital of the department of Caldas and is known as one of the main gateways to visit the Colombian Coffee Triangle .

Its location in the north of the Eje Cafetero makes Manizales an excellent place to start a route through the region, whether you come from Medellín or Bogotá.

Manizales is known for its steep colorful streets, its neo-Gothic Metropolitan Basilica Cathedral, the Cable Station and its many parks and natural spaces.

Within the Los Yarumos Ecopark there is a library and a museum, as well as trails and natural waterfalls.

In the surroundings of Manizales lies Jaime Restrepo Mejía Thought Center, a popular park with its different species of orchids, a cloud forest and a butterfly enclosure.

On the outskirts of Manizales, you’ll find the Los Nevados National Natural Park, with snow-covered volcanoes and some of the highest peaks in Colombia.

Best places to stay in Colombia's Coffee Belt - Manizales
Best places to stay in Colombia’s Coffee Belt – Manizales
Accommodation in Manizales - Click on the map to see all accommodation in this area
Accommodation in Manizales – Click on the map to see all accommodation in this area

Why is this a recommended area to stay in Eje Cafetero:

  • Tourist attractions
  • Lots of accommodation options
  • Parks and green spaces

5. Pereira

Pereira is the capital of the department of Risaralda and the largest city in the Colombian Coffee Region.

This great city has tourist attractions such as the statue of El Bolívar Naked in the main square, the Cathedral of Our Lady of Poverty and the University Botanical Gardens.

The Pereira Art Museum houses fixed and traveling exhibitions of local, national and international contemporary art.

Pereira also has the busiest and best-connected airport in the Eje Cafetero, Matecaña International Airport has domestic connections to several places in Colombia, and international flights to Miami and Panama City.

Near Pereira, you can find coffee farms offering tours and accommodation.

Dónde alojarse en el Eje Cafetero - Pereira
Where to stay in Eje Cafetero – Pereira
Accommodation in Pereira - Click on the map to see all accommodation in this area
Accommodation in Pereira – Click on the map to see all accommodation in this area

Why is this a recommended area to stay in Eje Cafetero:

  • Coffee farms
  • Big-city amenities
  • Close to thermal springs

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|ES| Dónde alojarse en el Eje Cafetero de Colombia.

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