If ever there was an example of a city turning itself around, Medellin is a shining beacon. In the 90s it was one of the world’s most dangerous cities, but fast forward 25 years and it’s one of Colombia‘s most diverse and exciting cities.
Nicknamed the City of Eternal Spring thanks to its consistently pleasant climate, the capital of Antioquia enjoys a favourable location between two Andean mountain ranges. There is so much going on here and its energy is undeniably contagious.
Much is said about Medellin’s public transport and while it may seem an odd thing to rave about, once you’ve visited, you’ll soon see why.
An extensive metro system helps its millions of inhabitants move around (a source of envy for the people of Bogota who are still waiting for theirs) and cable cars criss cross the skyline connecting the different communas. Where wandering into the wrong neigbourhood once came with severe consequences, this transport network has done much to unite the city of Medellin.
There are fabulous civic spaces, such as the Plazoleta de las Esculturas, home to 23 bronze sculptures by Colombian heavyweight Fernando Botero, as well as lively communas that embrace a positive future with vibrant street art and thriving community projects. Medellin is not a city that wants to forget, and the Casa de la Memoria is a wonderful museum that commemorates those affected by Colombia‘s turbulent past.
What to do
- Admire Fernando Botero's huge bronze sculptures in the Plazoleta de las Esculturas
- Ride the city's cable car system
- Visit the moving Casa de la Memoria (House of Memories) that commemorates those affected by Colombia's civil war and drug trade
- Treks and tours to nearby coffee plantations
- Visit Guatape Lake