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An increasing amount of people are visiting Colombia, an up-and-coming country, which has been transformed into a touristic haven in South America. It is also the only country on the continent to border the Pacific and the Caribbean at its coast. Its large capital, Bogotá, its Colonial cities, beaches, gastronomy and natural spaces make it the perfect destination for any tourist.
Named in honour of discoverer Christopher Columbus, this is the second most diverse country in the world (after Brazil) and boasts 56 natural parks, where you can see a variety of birds and amphibians, as the country has the largest amount of these species in the world. It is perhaps due to this that the Andean Condor features on its coat of arms and is the national bird.
However, not everything is outdoors, as there are a lot of cities and a lot of history to be explored. Just in Bogotá, you can visit the neighbourhoods of La Candelaria, Cartagena de Indias and its walled city, the Colonial spirit of Santa Fe, Popayán, Tunja and Villa de Leyva. Then there are the lively cities of Medellín, Cali and Barranquilla. Are you tempted? Get used to this phrase in Spanish (‘te provocan?’), as this is how they ask for your order in bars and restaurants, where you must sample a famous Colombian coffee.
Now is the time to fly with Iberia to Colombia. You'll discover a great country six hours behind Spain.
With regard to the climate, the temperature varies very little throughout the year. However, there are regional differences because of the geographical variations across the country, with warm climates on the coast and cold ones at the top of the Andes and Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta.
The main differences in climate are determined by the altitude since the temperature drops approximately 6 degrees for every kilometre above sea level. The main climate zones are:
Caribbean Coast. This zone has a tropical climate with rainfall concentrated between the months of May and November, becoming less frequent in the eastern areas.
Pacific Coast. The climate here is tropical and very wet. In fact, this region is considered to be one of the wettest on Earth, with the annual average rainfall varying between 3,000 and 6,000 mm.
Andes. In general this region has two wet seasons (from April to June and from September to November) and two dry ones (from December to March and in July and August), with a wide variety of temperatures depending on the altitude.
The Plains. This zone is characterised by high temperatures and two clearly differentiated seasons: a dry one between December and March, and a wet season between April and November.
Amazon. The climate in this zone is tropical, warm, humid and wet, as typically found in the rainforest.
If you fly with Iberia to Colombia you'll land at Bogotá Airport, known as El Dorado International Airport. It is located in Bogotá, approximately 12 km west of the city centre.
The best way to get to the city centre from the airport is to take the Transmilenio, Bogotá's fastest urban bus system. There are also other urban buses, and if you don't mind paying more you can obviously take a taxi.
Colombia is renowned for its excellent cuisine. Arepa filled with chorizo is probably the country's most typical dish.
The country's official currency is the peso.