You’ll never have enough of Medellín. This vibrant and fascinating city offers endless options of places to visit and things to do.
History, Art & Culture
Start your tour from the Plaza Botero, an open-air public gallery where you can admire the magnificent rotund statues of the famous Colombian artist Fernando Botero. Botero donated 23 of his bronze statues to Medellín, his hometown, as a tribute to the city. In this way, people can connect with art in a space that is attractive and pleasant to walk. In front of the Plaza Botero you’ll have the opportunity to visit Medellín’s most popular museum, the Museum of Antioquia, and also, the landmark building of Rafael Uribe Cultural Centre. In the south of the city, where previously was a steelmaker factory, you’ll find the edgy Museum of Modern Art, an important art space of the city. This museum was founded by artists and local entrepreneurs and has the largest selection of Débora Arango’s paintings, one of the most outstanding Colombian artists. Another thought-provoking museum is the Casa de la Memoria where you can meet and contemplate the city’s violent past through the eyes of the victims.
Another great plan is to visit Medellín’s botanical garden, a 13-hectares space featuring a lake, a tropical forest, a garden of palms and a desert. You cannot leave Medellín without visiting the city’s most trendy neighbourhood, El Poblado, home to top-notch restaurants, boutique hotels, bars and nightclubs. In case you’d like to have a more relaxed plan, you can go up to Nutibara hill to see the sunset and enjoy an incredible panoramic view over Medellín. On the top of the hill there’s also the Pueblito Paisa. In this 33-hectares space you’ll find a replica of a typical Antioquia style town of the 20th century.
Medellín’s most representative dish and maybe the most famous in Colombia is the bandeja paisa. It’s about a massive platter that traditionally includes minced beef, fried pork crackling, beans, rice, fried egg, chorizo, avocado, ripe plantain and arepa. It might sound like a bomb of carbs and fats but is definitely worth a try as it represents the region’s flavours. Other typical dishes of the department of Antioquia are the mondongo soup (thick soup made from pork, intestines and chorizo), the arepa paisa (made from corn dough and usually topped with butter, salt and cheese), the patacón (fried green plantain served with a variety of sauces) and the sancocho antioqueño (beef soup with potato, tapioca, carrot, corn and green plantain). Now, if you’d like to try the Antioquenian gastronomy, the Hacienda restaurant offers some good options of typical dishes from this part of the country and has various outlets across the city.
The innovative character of Medellín can be noticed all over the city. From the development of modern transport systems, like the Metro and Metrocable (cable car system) that directly connects poor neighbourhoods with central parts of Medellín, to the transformation of the Comuna 13 district from a no-go place to a must-visit tourist site.
During your stay in Medellín you can go on a guided walking tour to Comuna 13 and learn about its history and dark past through fascinating street art, music and dance performances by the local people. Once considered as one of the most dangerous neighbourhoods in Medellín, today Comuna 13 attracts increasing numbers of visitors every day. As soon as you arrive, you’ll come across a great novelty of the district – the open-air escalators. This public transit system allows people to easily ascend extremely steep inclines and hundreds of exhausting steps. The escalators are definitely one of the most effective and inclusive social projects ever put into effect in the city. They serve as a symbol of solidarity, hope and demonstrate a great example of Medellín’s rebirth.