Girl Walk the World

THINGS TO DO IN CALI, COLOMBIA – HOW TO ENJOY THE SALSA CAPITAL?

How to describe Cali in a few words? 

Imagine one the hottest places on earth without any beach in the picture, coupled with the warmth of its people, delicious and tasty food in every corner, world-class salsa, a place surrounded of montains and rivers make this city one of the most friendly and interesting destinations in the country: Cali.

TOP THINGS TO DO IN CALI

Let’s talk about activities to do in Cali, what to see and where to go.  If you’re traveling to Cali for the first time and aren’t sure where to start, this list might be helpful.

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Dance salsa with locals

The city where the unofficial hymn is called 🎶 Cali, pachanguero 🎶

Cali wouldn’t be Cali without the sound of drums and trumpets in the streets and, of course, the sexappeal of his people in dancing. If you don’t know how to dance Salsa, any one in Cali can be your teacher because we have the rythm flowing through our veins; in my personal taste I love to dance with afrodescendents people, they will dominate you on the dance floor and make you feel comfortable while dancing, it doesn’t mean another Caleños or Caleñas won’t dance as well, we are the experts in that matter.

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Indulge in local food

The part when I lose myself

The thing I miss the most nowadays in my life is definetly the food from my city, so tasty and elaborate that I can not find it in any other place I’ve been (probably I need to travel more because just 3 more countries are not a good sample). You can’t leave Cali without eating empanadas, marranitas, aborrajados, pandebono, tamal valluno, sancocho and others delights that you can find in every corner. Don’t worry about gaining weight, you can lose it while dancing 😉

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Get lost in the streets of San Antonio

One of the most traditional neighborhoods in Cali

If you like to walk through colonial style streets San Antonio is the place. The architecture of this neighborhood transports you to another era; You can find places to eat from Caleña typical food to Italian food, shop crafts till you drop, hear stories of storytellers on the hill of San Antonio and enjoy a beautiful view of the city. Do not miss it!, San Antonio is one of the favorite places for tourists and locals to stay and to spend time.

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Trek to Cerro de las 3 Cruces

There is nothing more magnificient than reaching the top of a mountain

If you’re in a good shape and physically fit, you should hike one of Cali’s mountains: Cerro de las 3 Cruces. At its top there is the three crosses monument, a police station and several telecommunications antennas. The ascent begins in the place known as Altos de Normandía, in the Normandía neighborhood; you will climb about 480 meters up. If you are motivated to exercise, and it is the first time you do, it is best to find a soft but steady pace in your walking, and do not give up until you reach the top and to sipping delicious juices while enjoying the most breathtaking panoramic view from the city.

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Explore Pance river

Prefered destination of Caleños

Every weekend, on sunday, you can see people from every neighborhood in Cali, ready, with swimming suit, backpack and all the stuff needed it to cook. Where are they going? They are going to the typical Pance river, where you can find good food, drinks and music for a very low price. If you are looking for places to camp and spend a relaxing time you can go up to the headwaters and you will find a lot of places in your way for camping or to rent a cabin.

Be ready to enjoy a refreshing bath into the river.

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Try an exotic fruit called Chontaduro

The bestseller in the town

When you are talking about typical street food in Colombia, It’s impossible not to talk about the bestseller fruit on the streets: Chontaduro. Spending few hour in Cali will show you the popularity it won in the city, even more than other fast food. It’s considered the “Colombian Viagra” although there aren’t studies to prove his effect in the sexual appetite, the truth is the nutritional properties of Chontaduro are well argumented.
If you want a different and exotic combination for accompany your “Tinto” (Colombian coffee) this the right choice. Order them with salt or honey, or even both for intensify his flavor.

Picture by @albornoz

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Walk around Rio Cali

Fresh air in the heart of the city

Walk under the shade of trees along the riverbank, admire the architecture of churches and other national monuments is a really cool plan to spend the day: take a break from the heat to visit the cat park of the river – El Gato del Río – beautifully crafted cat statues with different themes; visit La Plazaleta de Jairo Varela, a beautiful open air plaza in Cali downtown; cross the bridge to get into a the wonderful park full of fountains, vendors and beautiful old trees that lies right next to the goverment bulding – La Alcaldía de Cali -; at the end of this beautiful walk, you will find an incredible old church called La Ermita, a very unique looking cathedral.
During your tour, enjoy a Cholado, a delicious cold treat of shaved ice, fresh fruit, syrups fruits and cream #Yummie

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Shop until you drop

Handcrafts, souvenirs and malls

There are many lovely items and handicrafts that you can buy as souvenirs of your stay in this charming city, La Loma de la Cruz has been around a long time and still preserves its colonial charm. There are a lot of stores, offering all kinds of handicrafts such as textiles, leather items, iron souvenirs and many other handicrafts, in very affordable price, that reflect the culture of Cali. In downtown you can find really cheap clothes with good quality and if you are looking for more sofisticated places, visit the dozens of malls in town: Jardin Plaza, Unicentro, Chipichape, Palmetto, etc. There is clothing stores, coffe places, restaurants, movies, bars and even Casinos!

I hope you’ll have a fabulous trip to Cali!
And above all the things I mentioned here, don’t forget to meet and interact with the locals.
You’ll surely learn something new.

If you’re still reading, I’d like to say thanks for coming to my blog and staying here until the end of this article. I appreciate! If you find this blog post helpful, please share it, pin it, tweet it, or bookmark it.

Thank you and happy travels!

Hi, I’m Alex, the founder of GirlWalktheWorld.com. I born in a very humble home in Cali, Colombia, after my graduation and a heartbreaking experience I decided to plan my life around traveling and I’ve realized there’s only one major necessity that’s holding me back. I’m just starting so, please be patient. I write about the things I love the most.

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