Barranquilla is the northernmost city in Colombia and one of the most important cities in all of South America. The city has a total Population of over 2 million people. If you want to see what’s hot in Colombia right now, consider visiting Barranquilla! There are plenty of things to do here that will make you want to stay longer than expected. Let’s take a look at some of them!
Explore Plaza Mayor
Dating back to 1600, Plaza Mayor is one of two main squares in Barranquilla and a top attraction. The square hosts live music most nights, making it a popular hangout spot for locals and visitors alike to fly in Spirit Airlines. Take in some of Colombia’s best performers while you take in some culture. While at Plaza Mayor, pick up some souvenirs from any of the local shops and restaurants surrounding it. If you want authentic Colombian goods, head here first. It’s also easy to find public transportation out of Plaza Mayor. It’s located centrally, which makes finding your way around Barranquilla much easier as well.
What are Colombian pastries? Well there are many kinds of pastries. Some of these are:
- Empanadas (meat or vegetable-filled turnovers)
- Paracones (turnovers with mashed plantains inside)
- Bobadilla’s (rolls with cheese or meat)
Anywhere you go you’ll see street vendors cooking them up over hot coals or grills; grab some lunch and try one!
Eat like royalty at Cafe De La Opera
Located in a former opera house, with ceiling frescoes and massive chandeliers. And now serving seafood instead of performances, Cafe de la Opera is an absolute must-visit when you’re in Barranquilla. Lunch or dinner at Cafe de la Opera is a special occasion—which makes it perfect for date night! The restaurant offers decadent Mediterranean cuisine, gorgeous views of old world architecture, and perfectly seasoned meats. Best of all? It only costs $100 pesos ($3 USD) per person. That may seem expensive to a lot of Colombians. But prices are much higher than many other parts of South America. A private oceanfront villa will run you around $200 USD per night on holidays like Christmas or Easter week; that same villada will cost more than four times as much during any other week throughout most of 2018. Still too pricey? Couchsurfing has become more popular in Barranquilla over recent years and your host. And might be willing to help point out some great local restaurants for far less money than anything listed above.
See it all at Parque de los Novios
This beautiful park on Panama Bay is a popular place for locals to picnic and stroll. There are plenty of benches available for relaxing. As well as paddle boats you can rent by asking at one of the kiosks nearby. Don’t miss out on taking a ride on a gondola shaped like a boat! The scenery from up there is gorgeous. Take an afternoon stroll around La Isla de la Amorosa:
This island in Panama bay is best known for its big heart sculpture. Walk around and have your picture taken with it – don’t forget to say I love you for good luck! It’s customary to leave behind a coin or small gift before crossing back over to the mainland. Even if you just have time for a quick visit, consider touring Carrera 9A. Barranquilla has always been home to lots of street art. So it shouldn’t surprise anyone that Carrera 9A boasts tons of creative murals. If you take public transportation into town from Aeropuerto Internacional Simon Bolivar Airport. Be sure not to miss these free works of art when getting off the bus! Visit Parque Central Santa Rosa de Osos. Grab some food and find yourself a bench under one of its many trees. Santa Rosa Park is also ideal for people-watching or playing some games with friends after dark.
Party on the Malecon at Rockapulco
Every year in February, thousands of music lovers make their way to rock out and dance at Rockapulco. It’s one of Colombia’s biggest cultural events: a five-day festival featuring local and international bands. The Malecon a walkway that runs along Barranquilla’s waterfront is ground zero for performances. By Latin rock bands like Los Amigos Invisibles and Colombian artists such as Juana Molina. Imagine watching drummers beat huge congas while reggaeton beats pulse from giant speakers; it’s an amazing combination of music and views.
Gaze at Art Deco architecture along the Malecon
Situated right along the shore of Colombia’s Magdalena River. And Bay of San Miguel, Barranquilla is famous for its Art Deco architecture. The beautiful cityscape is world-renowned for its elegant white buildings decorated with brown friezes along their facades. While in town be sure to stroll down Calle del Prado Barranquilla’s most well-known. Art Deco street to take in some of its finest examples. Art lovers will also want to head over to Parque Zoológico La Guayaca to take in sculptures from renowned Colombian artist Fernando Botero. For an unforgettable view of Barranquilla, ride a cable car up Cerro de las Tres Cruces. This mountain provides stunning views of both the ocean and river below. At night, watch as brightly colored lights adorn many of Barranquilla’s majestic buildings. In addition to all that, Barranquilla boasts incredible restaurants featuring fresh seafood caught straight off nearby waters. If you love seafood then plan on feasting at popular eateries Casa Vieja Restaurant or Las Carretas Seafood Restaurants & Lounge—both are highly rated by locals!
Sneak into a concert at Parque Lleras
If you’re looking for a cheap but fun night out in Barranquilla, consider catching a free concert at Parque Lleras. Located on an island in the middle of La Playonera Lake, Parque Lleras is one of Barranquilla’s most popular public spaces. During July and August (known as Año Viejo or Old Year) festivals are organized there featuring local bands and cultural shows. The concerts tend to be quite loud so you may want to bring some earplugs. Just show up around 8:00pm—the gate opens early so you can go in to get a good spot before it fills up. Like many things in Barranquilla, admission is completely free!
Day trip it to Ciudad Perdida (Lost City)
Ciudad Perdida is one of Colombia’s most popular attractions, and for good reason. The city was originally built by indigenous people who created intricate stone pathways through rolling hills; it was rediscovered in 1975 after being lost for hundreds of years. Today you can explore by horseback or on foot—and take time to picnic while admiring its breathtaking views. This one-day excursion is a must if you find yourself in Barranquilla. It’s safe: Crime is down in Barranquilla (it was just named one of Latin America’s safest cities), but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be aware when exploring. Take precautions with your belongings while walking around town, and avoid traveling alone at night; getting home safely can be as simple as taking a taxi instead of walking home. You don’t have to visit Colombia’s big cities like Bogota or Cali to see first-hand that crime rates are going down throughout the country!
Shop till you drop at Plaza Mayor
The Museo del Oro de la Republic de Colombia is an excellent museum in Bogota for getting a crash course on Colombian history. In particular, it does a wonderful job of educating visitors about pre-Columbian indigenous civilizations—notably El Tairon and La Musica—as well as colonial conquistadors that populated much of modern-day Latin America. It’s also a rare opportunity to see Gold artifacts from throughout history; while many museums only display gold jewelry or other decorative items, here you can view objects that were used day-to-day by past civilizations. If you want to explore Barranquilla and you’re looking for a flight ticket call at Spirits customer service here you get the best deals on airfares. One word of caution: This museum is located inside Parque Nacional (National Park) directly adjacent to El Capitola Nacional.
Watch local soccer teams play in El Campine Stadium
Soccer is nearly a religion in South America and nowhere is that more true than in Colombia. The country’s national team and its biggest clubs are revered throughout all of Latin America, especially since they’ve been on an incredible run for the past decade or so. Catch a game during your visit to watch world-class players ply their trade for local powerhouse Atletico Junior at one of South America’s most popular soccer stadiums—El Campine Stadium. Located in Barranquilla’s northern suburbs, it serves as home to Atletico Junior and CD Atlético Junior, with many of Colombia’s top clubs visiting regularly to take on one of South America’s best teams. Definitely catch a game while you’re there if you can; it’ll be worth it!
Learn about Colombian history from Museo del Oro (Gold Museum).
The Museo del Oro is a must-see attraction in Colombia. It’s easy to understand why: The museum boasts more than 40,000 pieces of gold and other precious artifacts representing some 5,000 years of history and art. But you don’t have to be an expert in archeology or an aficionado of Colombian history to find something interesting in Bogota’s Gold Museum—because there’s plenty for all tourists here. An incredible display with crystal items from different periods show off just how skilled craftsmen used materials like lead glass and quartz crystal to create stunningly intricate objects. Colombia also has its share of fascinating historical characters such as Simon Bolivar, who was integral in helping shape Columbia into what it is today. A statue honoring him stands outside one entrance to the museum grounds. As another way to learn about regional culture, visit Barranquilla Market (Mercado de Marin). Feel free at any time that you are interested!