The beautiful Cocora Valley is located in the middle of three big columbian cities: Bogotá, Medellín and the capital of salsa, Cali. 4-6 hours depending of which city you departure from, you will get to Armenia which is a 30 minute drive to the smaller but very interesting town called Salento where Cocora Valley tours are offered.
How to get to Cocora Valley
The procedure for getting to Cocora Valley is pretty simple.
First of all you have to get to Armenia which is a smaller city in Columbia – typically you will take a bus from either Cali, Medellín or Bogotá. Furthermore, from Armenia you are supposed to take a small bus to Salento which is a 30 minute drive. Bus departures are every 30 minute so you have plenty of options.
When you are in Salento, Jeeps or normal taxies will take you to Cocora Valley where the magic begins.
Cocora Valley Price
Experiencing Cocora Valley is really cheap. You can do the trip totally free but if you wanna go to the most popular spots, then you have to pay a entrance fee of 2 dollars.
However, if you want the fully experience on horseback or in a Jeep you should expect to pay 10-15 dollars.
Furthermore, busses to Cocora Valley are pretty affordable. A bus from Cali to Armenia for example, can be bought for less than 10 dollars, and from Armenia to Salento you pay less than 5 dollars.
Where to stay
I did Cocora Valley on a one day-trip which I actually regret at the moment. The neighbor town, Salento, is definitely worth staying at a night or two. On the first hand, it is a cozy town in general. People are friendly, restaurants are cheap and good, and the atmosphere are just worth feeling – truly a backpacker spot.
On the second hand, the area of Salento has more than Cocora Valley and beautiful nature. You can for example go explore the famous and magnificent coffee plantations of Columbia, which is a ‘must do’ in Columbia as well. In that case I recommend you to bring great humor and time enough to enjoy Salento area.
How much time will you need at Cocora Valley
Use at least one day in Cocora Valley to see the the beauty of the valley. However, if you want to enjoy Salento and nearby activities, then spend 2-3 days in the cozy town and the explore what the area has to offer. Don’t rush through it!
When to visit Cocora Valley
Cocora Valley isn’t really seasoned, but there are better times to go than others to have the best odds of good weather. Go during the dry season and as early as possible to get a clear view of the valley and the major palms.
However, the valley is actually also pretty amazing if smaller clouds and mists are soaring between the mountains and palms. So yes, Cocora Valley is seasoned during year and day for clear weather, but amazing even though.
What to do there
Besides of enjoying the highest palms in the world, you should really get as far into the valley as possible, and by that, I mean you should go horse riding or explore with a Jeep inside the area of the park.
However, in my opinion horse riding is more authentic and fun in general. But it is up to you – do yourself the favor to go by either horse or Jeep… you won’t regret.
Why should Cocora Valley be on my bucket list ?
It should be on your bucket list because of its uniqueness. You will stand in the middle of hillsides, where majestic palms reach to the skies. A breathtaking landscape of valleys, hills and exotic palms will nevertheless give you awesome pictures, but also another reason to spare a spot for Columbia in your heart.