With the recent increase in security in Colombia due to agreements between the Colombian Government and the long-term Guerilla named FARC, tourism in the country has enjoyed a decent increase in popularity. Also made famous by the Medellin Cartel leader Pablo Escobar in many films and T.V. Series, Medellin stands as the highlight of most people’s itinerary, together with Cartagena. Many people started asking me lately for tips about this beautiful country and where they should go while visiting. I have mentioned many times that my favorite country in South America was Brazil, but in the past few years, I have had a preference for Colombia and having stayed there several times, it is one of my top destinations for a great living place as a Digital Nomad.
The Quality /Price ratio is super high in Colombia! You get an amazing lifestyle with great infrastructure and accommodation choice, at a very low cost. Transportation on the ground is very cheap too, with choices of taxis and Ubers at less than 5$ for most rides. And the food selection is very good! In most big cities like Bogota, Medellin, and Cali, you will get many restaurants and most meals will cost under 20$ for a good meal. That is to say, your dollar will go a long way, and I estimate cost of living at least 2 to 2.5 cheaper than in North America. Overall, for the Digital Nomad and budget traveler, Colombia is hard to beat! I suspect the prices will go up fast in a near future, but still, as of 2017, it is still a bargain destination and prices are much lower than countries like Brazil and Argentina!
With Friends in Guatape, near Medellin
It is no wonder there is a big expat community that has settled in Medellin and a pretty big digital nomad community. I personally came in 2012 and settled in the city of Cali in the south for a month, and then stayed in Medellin for 2 weeks. Cali is not bad, my choice of going there was mainly because it coincided with the “Mundial de Salsa”, one of the biggest international salsa festival in the world, quite an interesting event to be honest! But overall, I would definitely recommend more Medellin to settle as there is much more to do over there, and is more comfortable to live in as a city. The fact that there are many foreigners makes it also more secure than Cali. After these 2 weeks in Medellin in 2012, I had promised myself I would be back in the city for a longer stay, and I eventually came back in 2016 for a month and a half. I really enjoyed everything about it, booked an amazing Airbnb in the best part of town (El Poblado) for a very cheap price, which included a pool and a gym. What else can a digital nomad ask for?
I also enjoyed traveling around the country a bit, stayed a couple times in Bogota since 2015, as well as in Cartagena and to some smaller towns around the countryside. Overall, Colombia is just magnificent! This is a country that has it all. Food, culture and a landscape to die for! The mountainous regions are just breathtaking! Specially Medellin, which is jammed in between a Valley with a year round climate of about 18 to 25 degrees! No wonder it is called the city of eternal spring! Other than that, party goers will also enjoy the nightlife, as it is omnipresent in every city around the country! Salsa lovers like me will also enjoy the local Colombian style venues to practice a few steps! For me, Colombia will always be a place on my list that I need to come back to settle every once in a while!