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The 7 Unmissable Destinations for Extreme Sports in Colombia

Rafting in San gil Santander Colombia

Updated on 06/07/2024

Dear reader,
I would also like to recommend our Colombia travel guide, which provides a perfect overview of the tourist attractions in Colombia. Enjoy reading it!

Colombia, over the years, has positioned itself as one of the best countries for adventurers. In this blog we will show you where to experience the most extreme sports with nature in Colombia.

Where to do Extreme Sports in Colombia

Chicamocha National Park – Santander

Chicamocha National Park is a natural theme park dedicated to ecotourism, ranking as one of the most tourist-friendly and significant parks in the country.

In addition to all the activities and games you will find, the park offers a spectacular view of the Chicamocha Canyon, one of the largest and most impressive in Latin America.

Location: Situated along the Bucaramanga – San Gil route, 33.5 miles from Bucaramanga, in Santander.

Access: The activities have a cost depending on the company you hire.

Paragliding between mountains in San Gil Santander Colombia

Extreme sports you can find

  • Paragliding: Soar over 4921 feet high, experiencing the breathtaking landscape of the Chicamocha Canyon and its surroundings.
  • Torrentism: Descend via rope from waterfalls and cliffs over 262 feet high, feeling the rush of adrenaline and the force of gravity. This experience will truly test your mettle.
  • Bungee Jumping: Take a leap from a 229-feet height and marvel at the canyon’s views.
  • Rock Climbing: Scale the canyon’s rocky walls, offering various levels of difficulty from beginner to expert.
  • Buggies: All-terrain vehicles that allow you to speed through the park, feeling the breeze and dust on your face. Choose your routes according to your preferences.
  • Extreme Swing: A 49-feet structure suspends you at an 80-degree angle before releasing you into the void, creating the sensation of swinging over the majestic canyon.

How to get there?

It’s quite straightforward. From Bucaramanga, you can take a bus service from the transport terminal and choose a route that passes through Chicamocha National Park. The driver always stops at this location to pick up and drop off passengers. The journey takes an hour and thirty minutes.

Suesca – Cundinamarca

Suesca is hailed as the premier haven for climbers in Cundinamarca, boasting various rock formations with differing levels of difficulty.

It is a popular destination for many tourists, especially on vacations and weekends. Its wide range of activities makes it one of the most varied destinations for high-risk sports and contact with nature.

Location: Suesca is a municipality, situated 34,7 miles from Bogotá in Cundinamarca.

Access: Charged.

Rock Climbing in Suesca Cundinamarca

Extreme sports you can find

  • Rock Climbing: As you’ll see, Suesca is considered the birthplace of this sport in Colombia, with over 400 climbing routes ranging from beginner to expert levels.
  • Bungee Jumping: Suesca offers heights exceeding 131 feet, providing spectacular views of the surrounding valley and the Bogotá River.
  • Rappelling: Several spots offer descents from heights of over 98.4 feet down precipitous rocks.
  • Spelunking: Explore caves and caverns to admire rock formations, stalactites, and fossils. Suesca boasts two caves with over 1640 feet of passage, suitable for ages 12 and up.
  • Cycling: Rent bicycles to traverse various routes through forests, bridges, and tunnels amidst the mountains.
  • Paragliding: Admire Suesca and its surroundings flying in a paraglider accompanied by a professional instructor.

How to get there?

From Bogotá, take a bus from the North Highway transport terminal heading to Suesca via the Bogotá-Tunja route, approximately a one-hour journey. Inform the driver to drop you off at Suesca.

Santa Marta – Magdalena

Santa Marta, located on the north coast of Colombia, is a historic city that has become a key destination for extreme sports and adventure enthusiasts. Its proximity to the Sierra Nevada, the world’s highest coastal mountain range, and its Caribbean beaches, it offers a perfect setting for a variety of outdoor activities.

Visitors can enjoy hiking in the Sierra, exploring routes to the mystical Ciudad Perdida, snorkeling in the Tayrona National Natural Park to discover its rich marine biodiversity, and kitesurfing on its windy beaches.

In addition, the mountains around Minca provide excellent terrain for mountain biking, while its waterfalls are ideal for rappelling and climbing.

Location: Located on the Caribbean coast, 26 miles from the beaches of Santa Marta in Magdalena.

Access: Activities have a cost.

Extreme sports you can find

  • Canopy in Playa Blanca: Slide down a cable over the beach, enjoying panoramic views.
  • Canyoning in Minca: Explore rivers and gorges by rappelling, swimming and climbing.
  • Paddleboarding: Practice this sport in Santa Marta Bay, El Rodadero or rivers of the Sierra Nevada.
  • Surfing at Los Naranjos Beach: Ideal for surfers with personalized lessons available at the Tayrona Park.
  • Scuba Diving in Tayrona National Natural Park: Discover marine life in places like Cinto and Gairaca.”

Coffee Axis – Caldas, Risaralda, and Quindío

Coffee Axis stands as one of the country’s most important tourist jewels, renowned globally as the paradise of high-quality coffee production.

However, its landscapes have been declared a Cultural Landscape by UNESCO. If you’ve seen Jurassic Park, imagine enjoying similar postcard-worthy landscapes as you venture forth.

Location: Encompassing the departments of Caldas, Risaralda, and Quindío in the Andean region of the country’s central west.

Access: Charged.

Extreme sports you can find

  • Paragliding: Soar over Coffee Axis landscapes. Regions with mountains ranging from 557 to 16.404 feet offer ideal spots, such as Pereira, Risaralda, and Quindío.
  • ATV Riding: Coffee Axis provides varied and challenging terrains through rural roads and mountains, promising adrenaline-pumping ATV excursions.
  • Tubing: If you’ve never slid down a river on an inflatable tube, now’s your chance. Rivers like La Vieja, Quindío, and Barbar offer suitable currents for this sport.
  • Bungee Jumping: Take the plunge from a bridge with an elastic rope tied to your feet. Coffee Axis boasts bridges exceeding 18.6 feet in height for this thrilling experience.

Flandes – Tolima

Flandes has emerged as an attractive tourist destination due to its warm climate, natural landscapes, eand its offer of extreme aeronautical activities.

Thanks to its historical significance in Colombian aviation, Flandes houses the country’s most specialized agencies for adventures in the sky.

Location: Located in the center of Tolima department in the upper basin of the Magdalena River, 32,3 miles from Ibagué.

Access: Charged

Extreme sports you can find

  • Skydiving: Flandes hosts Colombia’s first skydiving school. Here, you can jump from heights of 10,000 feet, overlooking the Magdalena River and the regional landscape.
  • Ultralight Flying: Alternatively, experience flying in a two-seater ultralight aircraft with low-power engines, providing aerial views of Tolima.
  • Paragliding: Flandes is also a prime spot for paragliding, not only for its landscapes but also for the services offered by various agencies at Santiago Vila Airport, providing ultralight flights, skydiving, and paragliding.

How to get there?

It’s quite simple. From Bogotá or Ibagué, you can take a bus route from the transport terminal to Flandes, as there are direct routes available.

From Bogotá, the journey takes a little over three hours. From Ibagué, it’s 1 hour and 20 minutes.

Suarez and Fonce Rivers – Santander

The Fonce and Suarez Rivers are the perfect destination for water sports enthusiasts such as kayaking and rafting, offering 6.2 to 9.3 miles of watercourse.

While Colombia boasts numerous rivers across its territory, these rivers stand out as the most visited by tourists for such sports.

Location: The Fonce River is situated south of Santander department, bordering Boyacá, while the Suarez River lies in the Eastern Cordillera of the Andes, also in Santander.

Access: Charged.

Extreme sports you can find

  • Rafting: Descend the Fonce River, where you will find rapids (currents) from class 1 to 4, you will need coordination and teamwork. On this tour, you can visit and rest in the municipalities of Capitanejo or Jordán.
  • Kayaking: This journey involves paddling on a lightweight raft, offering more maneuverability but requiring greater skill.
  • Hydrospeed: Navigate the river on a floating board propelled by fins, wearing a neoprene suit and helmet for protection. This entails more physical effort and adrenaline.

For those seeking even more extreme experiences, you can visit the Suarez River. Its currents and flows are more intense, attracting the most experienced enthusiasts.

How to get there?

From your city, you must first get to the municipality of San Gil. Being the rivers the tourist points, from San Gil you can find transportation in the terminal that will take you to the vicinity of the rivers.

San Andrés Islands and Cartagena – Colombian Caribbean

Cartagena and San Andres are two of the most popular tourist destinations in the Colombian Caribbean and preferred places for tourists in search of beach sports or who prefer to venture into a Caribbean atmosphere.

Location: Cartagena sits on the shores of the Caribbean Sea in the north of the country, in Bolívar. San Andrés is located northwest of Colombia, 481 miles from the Colombian coast.

Access: Charged.

Extreme sports you can find

  • Flyboarding: Ride a water-powered hoverboard connected to a hose. Both locations provide top-notch flyboarding services and are very popular among tourists.
  • Windsurfing: Glide across the water on a surfboard connected to a sail. The beaches in these places offer optimal conditions for strong winds ideal for windsurfing.
  • Snorkeling: Explore semi-deep waters, as the marine landscapes in these places are rich in flora and marine fauna, especially at Acuario Cay in San Andrés or Rosario Islands near Cartagena.
  • Surfing: One of the most popular beach sports. You’ll find excellent waves for surfing in both destinations, whether at Rockey Cay in San Andrés or Bocagrande beaches in Cartagena.

How to get there?

Simply take a flight from your city to Cartagena or San Andrés.

You also have the option to reach Cartagena by land, either by private car or by taking a bus from the transport terminal. For example, the journey from Bogotá takes 16 hours, covering over 621 miles, and some prefer this mode of travel.

Recommendations

  • If you plan to stay for several days, research accommodations. Airbnb and nearby stays offer lodgings at very reasonable prices.
  • Choose a sport that suits your physical condition and personal preferences.
  • For a pleasant experience, we recommend hiring an expert guide service or arranging activities through a company that provides all necessary services.

More Nature Tourism Experiences in Colombia

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About Author

Frank

Frank

Hello! I'm Frank Spitzer, the founder and the heart behind Pelecanus, a specialized tour operator for Colombia travel. My journey in travel is vast and rich – I've explored over 60 countries, absorbing cultures, experiences, and stories along the way. Since 2017, I've been channeling this wealth of global experience into creating unforgettable travel experiences in Colombia. I'm recognized as a leading authority in Colombian tourism, with a deep-seated passion for sharing this beautiful country with the world. You can catch glimpses of my travel adventures and insights around Colombia on my YouTube channel. I'm also active on social media platforms like TikTok, Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest, where I share the vibrant culture and stunning landscapes of Colombia. For professional networking, feel free to connect with me on LinkedIn. Join me on this incredible journey, and let's explore the wonders of Colombia together!

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