It is located in the heart of Eje Cafetero (Coffee Triangle), Valle del Cocora is considered part of the World Heritage Sites by the UNESCO and, as you may imagine, it is one of those landscapes that will leave you breathless. In fact, the most beautiful and surprising about Colombia, besides its people, are its hundreds and hundreds of little paradises found across the national territory. Snowed mountains, green mountains, rivers of colors, immense deserts, a lost city amidst mountains, beaches and incomparable islands, among others landscapes are part of the quota that made foreigners and Colombians not to get tired of them.
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On this article, we present to you the Valle del Cocora. Located in Salento, Quindio, it is a Natural Reserve home of the highest wax palms in the world (more than 60 meters high) as well as being a Colombia national symbol. Take into account that the Valle del Cocora Natural Reserve is the entrance, to the Nevados National Park (another recommended destination), where you can enjoy an immense green valley of stunning landscapes.
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This is an ideal destination for those who love to be in contact with nature, breathe clean pure air and birdwatching.
As we mentioned earlier, Valle del Cocora is located in Salento. So first you have to get there. You can go to Salento from Armenia by bus; you can take it at the Bus Terminal for 5.000 COP or from Pereira for 8.000 COP, also from the Terminal.
If it is your first time in this department/state, we recommend you to stay one or two nights in Salento. It is a town full of colorful houses, a really beautiful place with amazing landscapes. Also, it will help you to go to the Valle del Cocora since it is best to go very early in the morning.
To go there, head to the main square, there are Jeeps that leave every hour and take you to the entrance of the Reserve, this transport costs around 4.500 COP.
When you get off the car, walk straight 600 meters and enter La Esperanza farm. Entrance fee is 3.000 COP and it is the shortest and fastest way to the Valle del Cocora.
If you want to stay longer and spend more with nature, we recommend you to turn right on the trail and start a route full of trees, bridges, rivers, the sound of the Cocora (the valley was named after the name of this bird) and many hummingbirds.
This road will take you to the entrance of the Acaime Nature Reserve, better known as Casa de Los Colibríes, where for 5,000 COP, you can watch these beautiful birds and eat a typical snack (sugar cane water with cheese).
After 40 more minutes of walking, take the road to the left, go through the gate, start the descent and wait for the giant palms of the Valle del Cocora opening their way to the sky.
Walk through the valley, take the best photos and enjoy the beauty of that place. When going back, you do not have to take the same road. Just go across the valley and you will exit by the shortest trail.
Remember to always take care of everything in the area. This an important recommendation. This valley is a national symbol and heritage.
In your trip goes around Colombia you do not want to miss Caño Cristales, the five color river; and Chiribiquete, the new World Mixed Heritage. In the Caribbean coast, the Tayrona Park is a must and then head to Punta Gallinas by yourself.