Colombia Adrenaline Rush


Culture | Activity

Rafting, rappelling and paragliding in Santander

8 days Ask us for pricing This is the price per person for a private tour (based on 2 people travelling) excluding international flights. Contact us for pricing for other group sizes including individuals.
Intro, Dates & Prices


Get your adrenaline rush in Colombia’s adventure sports capital - Santander. Whether you fancy taking on the rapids, rappelling down waterfalls, riding on mules through rugged country or want to get a bird’s eye view whilst paragliding, Santander has it all. Later meander the cobbled streets of Colombia's colonial gem,Barichara, a town set back in time. Absorb the colonial charm and rustic beauty of this gorgeous place.


  • Wander cosmopolitan Bogotá
  • Discover Barichara, Colombia`s colonial gem
  • Ride mules in rugged countryside
  • Rappel down a waterfall
  • Raft the rapids of the River Fonce
  • Get a bird`s eye view of Santander while paragliding

Places Visited

Bogotá - Barichara - San Gil - Giron

What's Included

Airport pick-up & drop-off
Two internal flights
Ground transport
Adventure activity fees
Entrance fees to sites
All breakfasts and some meals (see itinerary for meal plan)
Drivers and guides

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Day 1 : Bogotá

Pick up from the airport. Transfer to hotel. Overnight in Bogotá.

Meal plan: n/a

Nestled high in the Andes at 2620 m. (8646 ft), Bogotá, or Santafé de Bogotá to give it its full title, is a city of contrasts, with high-rise buildings standing next to colonial churches, museums and artisan cafés. Its influences range from Spanish and English to Indian. It is a city of wild traffic and calm oases reflecting a bygone era. 

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Day 2 : Bogota

Leisurely start to day. Full-day sightseeing in Bogotá, including the Gold Museum, Monserrate and the Bohemian vibe of the Candelaria. Dinner and overnight in Bogotá.

Meal plan: Breakfast

La Candelaria is an historic neighbourhood in downtown Bogotá. The architecture of the old houses, churches and buildings utilises Spanish colonial and baroque styles, with iron windows, sturdy wooden doors and internal patios with beautiful yet hidden gardens. This vibrant district hosts the Botero Museum, which showcases not only the works of Colombia's most famous painter but also paintings by Monet and Picasso from Botero's private collection. The 'barrio' is also home to the largest and most impressive gold museum in the world, showcasing an enormous assortment of pre-Hispanic gold work, the church of Monserrate, with its stunning views over the city, many government buildings and an array of cafés and restaurants to suit every taste.

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Day 3 : Socorro - Barichara

Transfer to Bogota airport. Flight to Bucaramanga where you will be met by a Travel The Unknown representative. Drive to Chiflas, a typical Colombian restaurant, for lunch and then stop in the quaint and historical town of Socorro. Visit a farm which produces fique, the material which is used in the making of traditional Colombian hats. Afterwards head towards Barichara for overnight.

Meal plan: Breakfast

120km south of Bucaramanga lies Socorro. The revolution against the oppression of the Spaniards began here making it highly influential in the history of Colombia. Oscar Rodríguez Naranjo, the Colombian painter was born in Socorro in 1907. Fique is a natural fibre that grows in the leaves of the plant Furcraea andina and is native to Andean Colombia, Ecuador and Peru. It has been used for centuries to make things ranging from clothes to ropes. Dutch colonists took the plant back to Mauritius and it was then introduced to many other countries. Today, it is mainly used to produce ethnic handicrafts

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Day 4 : Barichara

After breakfast, morning free to explore the colonial charm of Barichara's picture-postcard streets. Enjoy an excellent Colombian lunch. In the afternoon, wander through the Colombian countryside on mules. Return to Barichara for overnight.

Meal plan: Breakfast

Barichara, a colonial Spanish town 20km north of San Gil with pretty stone roads, churches and a stunning cathedral is one of the most beautiful towns in Colombia. In 1702 a worker found came across a rock with an image of the Virgin Mary on it and so in 1705, a church was built there to mark the place of this miracle - Barichara grew from there. Its whitewashed buildings and colonial architecture create a unique character and atmosphere. In order to preserve and protect the architecture and history, it was declared a National Monument in 1978. Barichara originates from the Guane Indian word Barachala meaning ‘a good place for a rest’. This holds true but it also has plenty to offer for those wishing to see some sights.

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Day 5 : El Gallineral

Early breakfast. Leave for waterfall rappelling. Snacks afterwards. Proceed to departure point for white water rafting. Afterwards, enjoy a well-earned late lunch at Parque El Gallineral. Wander around the park and admire the amazing trees and wildlife. Dinner and overnight in San Gil.

Meal plan: Breakfast & lunch

With Quebrada Curiti and Rio Fonce running on either side, Parque El Gallineral is a 4 hectare park on the edge of San Gil with trees covered in strings of moss. These are known as barbas de Viejo (old man’s beard). Paths and bridges wind through the trees and there is a freshwater pool ideal for a relaxing dip. This is the perfect place to relax after rapelling and white water rafting in Rio Fonce. 

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Day 6 : San Gil - Giron

After breakfast, head out for more adrenalin activities. Explore San Gil's fascinating mud caves and bat caves. Cross through creeks and arrive upon a sulphur lake. Alternative activities can also be arranged. Lunch in San Gil. Drive to and overnight in the charming colonial town of Giron.

Meal plan: Breakfast

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Day 7 : Giron

Leisurely start to day. Drive to spot for paragliding. Afternoon free to wander around the vibrant colonial town of Giron. Overnight in Giron.

Meal plan: Breakfast

Similar to San Gil and Barichara, Giron has managed to preserve its colonial character and all the cobbled streets and colonial buildings take you back in time. Founded earlier than Barichara in 1631, it too was declared a National Monument in 1963 and restoration work in the main plaza means that it is still intact. Bridges that were allegedly built by slaves scatter the town. It is a relaxed town and only 9km from Bucaramanga. 

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Day 8 : Bogotá - Departure

Early morning flight from Bucaramanga to Bogotá. Connect for international flight.

Meal plan: Breakfast


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Seamless, worry-free travel in a far flung corner of the world. It was the best way to make sure we used our travel time seeing the country, interacting with the people, and tasting the food. I`ve already spent enough time, in queues, on buses, or just generally lost to appreciate a well planned trip.

Sean and Bonnee Gregg , Tailormade Colombia

David and Rahul, what a great company you run! My tailormade trip to Colombia was just perfect! Your advice and guidance in advance of the trip was excellent. I loved the accommodation in Bogota and Cartagena; quaint and traditional. And the staff were incredibly friendly, welcoming and helpful. Your agent, Russell, was very attentive, and the drivers allocated to transport me were punctual, friendly and helpful! I cannot fault a thing. Thanks so much for planning such smooth-running trip for me. And, naturally, Colombia was the big star; can`t wait to visit again!

Stuart Robinson , Tailormade Colombia

Thanks so much for a wonderful trip. The whole trip was fantastic. Our guides throughout were knowledgeable, enthusiastic and friendly. The Humming Bird walk in Manizales was probably the highlight but it`s not easy to choose. We will definitely travel with Travel the Unknown again.

Shaun Matthews , Tailormade Colombia

Thanks for making my trip possible and so successful in such a short time. I loved every single second and the trek to the Lost City is amazing. Would do it again in this precise moment. And Colombia was a pleasant surprise, the country is incredible and really safe against the common stereotypes. It is a place I would be happy to live in, with the good weather, the colours and on particular the music. The food was incredible and freshly cooked. I am normally a fussy eater but I had every single meal almost cleaning the plate every time! Really enjoyed the fresh fruit supplied during the breaks.
The package was excellent considering the very short notice. I was impressed by the efficiency and the great communication.

Lisa Zardoni , Lost City Trek, Colombia

I would recommend Travel The Unknown`s Colombian Odyssey tour for anyone who wants a fairly comprehensive tour of the highlights of Colombia. I would definitely advise an add on to Cartagena, if you haven`t already visited. Colombia is a wonderful place to take a holiday whether you have been to Latin America many times before or even if it is your first trip. Travel The Unknown have definitely chosen the best places to stay and we were very well looked after. If you want a completely tailormade trip, I`m quite sure that the experience would be equally excellent. It`s good to find a smaller company where you get a more personal service and which goes to off beat places or off beat areas of well known but far away places.

Julie Crank , Colombian Odyssey, Colombia

There have been so many highlights on our 15-day trip to Colombia: the Salt Cathedral in Zipaquira, Colonial towns of Villa de Leyva and Cartagena, learning about the coffee culture, the wonderfully crazy Carnaval de Negros Y Blancos at Pasto to name a few. The guides were friendly, knowledgeable, and eager to introduce us to the local culture, making this one of the most memorable trips I've ever taken.

Albert Chau , Festivals of Colombia, Colombia

We have just returned from a three week trip to Colombia organised on a private basis by Travel the Unknown. This followed our tours with them to both Eastern and Western Turkey in 2015 and to Iran in 2014. We view all three trips as great successes, wherein everything that was promised, was delivered. We will be planning further trips with them.

James & Margaret Stewart , Tailormade Colombia

The Lost City trip was amazing. Would recommend this trip to anyone who has a sense of adventure and not afraid to leave their comfort zone. Machu Picchu is nothing like this and the sense of achievement you get when you reach the Lost City is truely outstanding. I am now looking for a similar adventure in another part of the world.

Daniel Bean , Lost City Trek, Colombia

This was a great adventure. Be prepared to get hot and wet but the rewards are worth it. Beautiful scenery and we learnt a lot about the history of Colombia and the local region from our guide. Would recommend Colombia to any travellers. Thanks to Travel the Unknown for organising trip, we had no issues which allowed us to appreciate the country even more. This was one of the best treks I have done. Very enjoyable and some amazing scenery.

Terry Cooper , Lost City Trek, Colombia

An amazing and comprehensive tour of Colombia. This is a beautiful county, go now before it gets too touristy!

Gillian Lowe , Tailormade Colombia

Travel the Unknown organised a brilliant three-location private trip to Colombia, including Bogotá Gold Museum, coffee-country and colonial and Republican Cartagena. Practical arrangements for transport, hotels and guides worked well. It was a delightful tour.

Tony Cram , Tailormade Colombia
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