Salento Colombia: Gate to the Cocora Valley

Is Salento Colombia a model for a gingerbread house, or a jumping off point for seeing the world’s tallest palm trees, the wax palms? I didn’t try to taste the houses to confirm that they weren’t made of gingerbread, but I’m assuming that they’re not.

The main street in Salento Colombia.

 Salento Colombia is a fairly touristy town. This being said, however, it is a far cry from tourist towns in many parts of the world. It still holds the charm of its people, not just a trap for your dollars to be dropped in. The main street that is featured in the picture above has many tourist stores, yes, but it also has hardware stores, grocery stores, and billiards halls.

The town square of Salento Colombia.

For our trip to the Cocora Valley we missed the communal jeep that leaves from the above square and had to hire a personal jeep to take us. The jeep trip to the Cocora Valley has some stunning countryside scenery, and is a reasonably smooth ride.

A fruit stand’s pineapple framing the typical Salento building.


One night we went to a restaurant in town called “Speakeasy” run by two Australian brothers. The burgers they served were truly fantastic, and the curry wasn’t quite authentic, but damn good for an Aussie. The place had a great vibe, with people hanging out playing guitar, chatting, and breaking out the board games. It’s near the entrance to the town, and a great way to pass a night while in town.


No fires to fight today.


The town is a great chilled out place, where I could easily pass a week just hanging out and enjoying the views. It has plenty of great options to lay your tired head after exploring the surrounding region.


How to Get to Salento Colombia

From Bogota, Cali, or the south of Colombia go to the Armenia bus depot, and take a local bus to Salento.

From Medellin, and north take a bus to Pereira bus terminal, from which you can take a local bus to Salento.

Or, start cycle touring, and arrive by bike as we did.


Where to Stay in Salento Colombia

While in Salento we stayed at Posada del Angel, just off of the main square.  It was a beautiful, well kept, and inexpensive place to lay our heads for two nights.



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