Medellín has left behind its hard past, and has become, in less than a decade, one of the most innovative and attractive cities in Latin America.
With a year-round pleasant climate and striking landscape, it has become a popular choice for MICE – meetings, incentives, conferences, and exhibitions – and travel, attracting businesses and industries from around the globe.
In 2018, Medellín was nominated in four categories – ‘Best leading business destination’, ‘Best tourism promotion destination’, ‘Best MICE destination’ and ‘Best city getaway destination’ – by the World Travel Awards, considered by the tourism industry as an recognition of excellence in the sector.
Medellín’s social transformation and innovation is recognized around the world. The city has won several awards, such as the Lee Kuan Yew World City Prize, which is awarded to cities that display good governance and innovation in tackling urban challenges, and the ‘Most Transformed City of the Year’ prize at the Bravo Business Awards.
Medellín was also named the ‘second-coolest city to visit in Latin America’ by Forbes in 2018, and nominated as one of Lonely Planet’s ‘cities to visit’ in 2017. In addition, the city was voted South America’s most popular destination by TripAdvisor travellers in 2018 and, in 2019, the World Economic Forum chose Medellín to represent South America as a Centre for the Fourth Industrial Revolution.
Among its tourist attractions and its social and cultural innovations, several stand out: For example, a walking tour of Comuna 13, once one of the most dangerous neighbourhoods in Medellín, is a chance to experience, first-hand, the city’s positive transformation thanks to the joint efforts of the local government and the community.
The Medellín Flower Festival is another must-see event: held every year in August, this 10-day celebration plays host to concerts and cultural activities for the whole family. During the Desfile de Silleteros (flower parade), close to 500 silleteros (flower carriers) of all ages decorate the streets of the city with their silletas.
Visitors to the city should also be sure not to miss the artworks of Medellín-born artist Fernando Botero, whose instantly recognizable paintings, drawings and sculptures are exhibited across the city, including at the Museum of Antioquia, the Plaza de las Esculturas, Berrio Park, San Antonio Park and San Cristóbal Park and Library.
Medellín, a city of transformation, is waiting to welcome you.
From the mountains that surround the capital of Antioquia you can see how the Medellín River runs parallel to the Metro, which connects various parts of the city. There is an abundance of parks, libraries, museums and public spaces where many cultural events take place. Flowers have their own fair, and in the surrounding villages life is simple with restful landscapes and nature reserves.
Ingenuity is a quality which the people of Antioquia prize, so it is not surprising that in 2013 Medellín was named the most innovative city in the world in the Wall Street Journal’s City of the Year Contest. The ‘City of Eternal Spring’ is also notable for the wide range of goods on offer for those who like modern shopping malls.
The main ways to get to Medellin are:
By bus: Combuses S.A. covers the Medellin – Airport trajectory with two routes: Airport-Palmas-Sandiego and Airport – Highway – Downtown.
Individual taxi: Companies that provide taxi services: Flota Córdova, Combuses, Rápido Medellín Rionegro, Transportes Unidos La Ceja, Aerotaxi, Transportes Chachafruto and Copetaxi.
Shared taxi: Companies that provide shared taxi services: Rápido Medellín Rionegro, Transportes Unidos La Ceja, Flota Córdova and Aerotaxi.
How do I get around the city?
The best way to get around the city of Medellín is by using the Integrated Public Transportation Metro System, which has:
Line A: Niquia – La Estrella and La Estrella – Niquia.
Line B: San Antonio B – San Javier B and San Javier B – San Antonio B.
Line J: San Javier J – La Aurora and La Aurora – San Javier J.
Line K: Acevedo – Santo Domingo and Santo Domingo – Acevedo.
Line L: Santo Domingo L – Arví and Arví – Santo Domingo L.
Line H: Oriente – Villa Sierra and Villa Sierra – Oriente.
Metroplús Lines 1 and 2: Medellin University – Aranjuez Park.
Line T-A (Ayacucho Tram): round trip from San Antonio.
¿What is the metro’s schedule?
Monday to Saturday:
Lines A, B, T-A, H, J, K, 1 and 2: 4:30 a. m. to 11:00 p. m.
Sunday and holidays:
Líneas A, B, T-A, 1 and 2: 5:00 a. m. to 10:00 p. m.
Line K: 8:30 a. m. to 10:00 p. m.
Lines J and H: 9:00 a. m. to 10:00 p. m.
The paisa tray, which among other things includes beans, chorizo, pork and egg; and porridge, containing milk, corn and sugar cane, are characteristic dishes of the department of Antioquia.
Local food is a strength of the restaurants in Medellin. However, in the city there also are high quality restaurants that serve international dishes.
Calle de la Buena Mesa in the Manila neighborhood, Parque Lleras and its surroundings, and Milla de Oro in El Poblado; Calle Junín downtown and Boulevar de la 70 in Laureles, offer typical dishes from Antioquia, including bandeja paisa and beans casserole, a smaller version of the bandeja with almost all its flavours.