Tours list
Los Nevados National Park, South - North trail. Colombia

Beautiful trekking in the central part of the Los Nevados National Park with the possibility of climbing to the top of Paramillo del Quindio (4745 m)

The thread of the route covers the central part of Los Nevados National Park, which is located in the central part of the Andes and in the traditional coffee area of Colombia,
is one of the highest mountain parks in the country.

  • the route runs from South to North through four states: Tolima, Quindio, Risaralda and Caldas, through high mountain passes,
  • there is an opportunity to climb a very beautiful peak called Paramillo del Quindio (4745 m),
  • panoramic 360-degree views, overlooking the three main snow-covered volcanoes: Nevado del Ruiz (5321 m), Nevado del Tolima (5221 m) and Nevado del Santa Isabel (4965 m),
  • trekking passes through various climatic (thermal) zones, where you can appreciate the biodiversity characteristic of the country,
  • the trekking is not very difficult, but in the area there are quite long distances that need to be covered during daily routes
Article:
327
Country:
Colombia
Tour type:
Hiking and trekking
Directions:
Los Nevados National Park
Complexity:
Easy
Number of participants:
From 1 people
Maximum height:
4270 m
Season:
All year round, but there are rainy seasons
Start of the program:
Bogota
Finish program:
Bogota
Duration:
8 days
Price:
1 260 USD
Count:
Tours dates
  
01.01.202331.12.2023
01.01.202431.12.2024
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Day 1    
Meeting at the hotel in Bogota, transfer to the airport, domestic flight (1 hour) to the city of Armenia. Upon arrival, a transport will be waiting for us, ready to take the group to the beautiful city of Salento (1919 m), a typical coffee town with paisa colonial architecture and a relaxed atmosphere. Depending on the time of the flight schedule, it is possible to include a coffee tour in the afternoon.
Meet your mountain guide in the evening to talk about activities for the next day.
Overnight at the hotel.

Day 2    
Early breakfast and departure by jeep to the Cocora Valley (30 minutes), an impressive valley located at an altitude of 2425 meters, adorned with the national tree of Colombia: the Wax palm. After enjoying the place, the staff will prepare the luggage to be taken by pack animals. The ascent follows an off-the-beaten track trail through primary mountain rainforest. The trail goes up the by “Quebrada Cardenas”, following the river with the same name, which slowly gains altitude. Few meters above the tree line, a mountain farm called “La Argentina” is located, a beautiful spot between the vanishing forest and the high altitude grassland known as “Paramo”. This small farm will be the shelter for the night. The place is very rustic and humble, but with a lot of charm and local atmosphere. The hike is a perfect first acclimation day for the coming days.
Night in tents.
Ascent: 1058 m / Highest Altitude: 3483 m / Distance 10,7 Km / Activity duration: 6-7 h
Included meals: Breakfast, Picnic, Dinner

Day 3    
After a good local breakfast and rest, we will continue our ascent by the northern margin of “Quebrada Cardenas”, passing an abandon farm called Buenos Aires and from there descending to a river crossing, following an ascending trail to the mountain pass known as “La Linea” (4019 m), which divides the states of Quindío and Tolima, and an excellent view point towards “Paramillo del Quindio” (4745 m), the highest summit of Quindío state, and the Nevado del Tolima in the neighboring valley. From the pass, there is an easy descend toward the “La Primavera/La Playa” farm another humble place, where it will be served the hot local drink “agua de panela” (hot drink with raw sugar) or coffee. Lunch will be held at the farm. On the afternoon the group will do a relaxing hike to “El Encanto” Lake (the Enchanted lake), located west from the farms. The trail follows the Tolima’s valley for about 1,5 hour and then heads up to the lake for another 30 min. The lake is located in a small valley with a great view to the Nevado del Tolima and Paramillo del Quindío summits. Most of the hike will be done through a relative flat páramo ecosystem. The return to the farm will be done by the same trail.
Ascent to La Linea pass: 536 m / Descent to Finca La Primavera: 250 m / Highest Altitude: 4019 m / Distance to La Primavera farm: 5,8 Km / Activity duration to La Primavera: 4-5 h
Ascent to El Encanto Lake: 257 m / Descent back to La Primavera farm: 257 m / Highest Altitude: 4026 m / Distance to El Encanto Lake: 5,25 Km round trip / Activity duration to El Encanto Lake: 3-4 h
Included meals: Breakfast, Picnic, Dinner

Day 4    
The day starts with an early breakfast. We climb the mountain pass "La Linea" (4019 m), the border between the states of Tolima and Quindio. From this place there are 3 options how to get to the "Berlin Farm" (3848 m), and they will be dealt with in the place, depends on the physical form, acclimatization and weather conditions.
 

  • By the “El Boqueron” mountain pass (4270 m). This trials descends from “La Linea” pass down to the Quebrada Cardenas valley, crosses the Quindio river (3750 m) and reascend by a quite steep but scenic trail up to “El Boqueron” pass, the border between the states of Quindio and Risaralda. After the pass, over a relative flat area leads the way “El Agrado” valley. in this section there is the option to do a quick short ascent to Cerro Chispas (4390 m) for a great view to the neighboring valleys and summits. The descend by the “Agrado” valley is very relaxing, losing altitude progressively and by beautiful “Frailejoes” gardens and pasture fields. At the bottom of the valley is “Berlin” farm, located at a unique and isolated spot. By the Boqeron: Ascent to La Linea Pass: 250 m / Descend to Quindio River: 269 m / Ascent to El Boqueron Pass: 520 m / Descend to Berlin farm: 422 m / Highest Altitude: 4270 m / Distance: 6,2 Km / Activity duration: 4-5 h (Optional ascent to Cerro Chispas: Ascend and descend from El Boqueron pass´altitude: 120 m / Activity duration: 1 h more)
  • By the “Los Humedales de Quindío” wetlands (4193 m). The trail follows the southern flank of the Quebrada Cardenas’ valley leads up to swampy area named: “Los Humedales de Quindío” wetlands (4193 m). The “humedales are located at the base of the extinct volcano known as Paramillo del Quindío, the highest summit in the Quindío state. It is in these wetlands that the Rio Quindío is born, and much of the water provided to the lower regions comes from here.After lunch at the “Humedales” the group will take a trail on the northern side of the valley, down to a col and then back up to a second pass called “La Angustia” (4193 m), the border between the states of Quindío and Risaralda. From this point a valley drops, by the El Agrado river basin, to the “Berlin” farm (3848 m). By the Humedales area: Ascent: 424 m / descend: 345 m / Highest Altitude: 4193 m / Distance: 16,4 Km / Activity duration: 7-8 h
  • Optional climb: Paramillo del Quindio (4745 m). This option is the longest and most demanding one, due to the long terrain to the cover and the ascent to the Paramillo del Quindío.The goal is to ascent to the Paramillo, to get to the base the team will follow the same trail to the Humedales described above and from the wetlands, the climb begins following a series of colorful moraines and arêtes until the final ridge of “El Caballete”, which leads to the main summit (4745 m). The view from the top is just incredible, as it is possible to see most of the national park’s area and, if the weather allows it, there is a perfect view to the neighboring volcanoes of: Nevado Santa Isabel (4965 m), Nevado del Ruiz (5321 m) and Nevado del Tolima (5221 m). The descent is quite fast down to the base. Note: if some people are tired or do not wish to climb this summit, it is possible for them to take a rest at the base while the others ascend the volcano, and then be reunited on the descent.Once back at the “humedales” and after lunch, the group will take a trail on the northern side of the valley, down to a col and then back up to a second pass called “La Angustia” (4193 m), the border between the states of Quindío and Risaralda. From this point a valley drops, by the El Agrado river basin, to the “Berlin” farm (3848 m).To the summit of Paramillo del Quindío: Ascent: 976 / Descent: 897 m / Distance: 19,4 Km / Highest Altitude: 4745 m / Activity duration: 9-10 h

Night in tents.
Included meals: Breakfast, Picnic, Dinner

Day 5    
Departure from “Berlin” farm after breakfast and ascend to Berlin’s pass (3964 m), one of the best viewpoint on the trek looking down to “El Bosque” crater. This crater valley is just idyllic with its small farms and color patches all over the place. From the pass, there is steep descent to Quebrada Blanca, the lowest point of the day (3606 m). The terrain starts to ascend once again, by the “Cuenca del Rio Otun” or “Eden” valley, following a series of ridges and small valleys up to “El Mosco” lake and from there to the “Otun” lake, the biggest lake in Los Nevados National. The campsite is at the shores of the lake and there will be good time to enjoy a relaxing afternoon at this lovely spot.
Night in tents.
Ascent to Berlin’s pass: 116 m / Descend to Quebrada Blanca: 358 m / Ascent to Otun lake: 327 m / Highest altitude: 3933 m / Distance: 9,5 Km / Activity duration: 5-6 h
Included meals: Breakfast, Picnic, Dinner

Day 6    
Today's route can be followed by one of the two trails that depart from the campsite at Lake Otun. The guide will decide which route to take depending on physical condition and weather conditions.

  • By the Western lake’s trail: Morning hike back to the lake’s drain and then walk on a trail/dirt road that follows the Western margin of the lake up to the “La Asomadera” mountain pass (4139 m), the border between the states of Caldas and Risaralda and the best place to see the Otun lake, then following the same old road/trail descending along pasture fields, losing gently altitude until reaching the Northern park entrance known as Potosi, a few minutes later the final destination: “Campo Alegre” farm (3970 m). There will be a transport waiting to take the group down (3-4 h) to a coffee farm in the Manizales area. Night at coffee farm. Ascent: 206 m / Descend: 169 m / Highest altitude: 4139 m / Distance: 9,5 Km / Activity duration: 4-5 h
  • By the Eastern lake’s trail: This trail follows the Eastern shore of the lake and ascents towards a higher point at the Asomadera ridge, passing through well-preserved native vegetation and scenic waterfalls. Once on the ridge (4237 m), the trail descends by a series of small lakes down to the lower Asomadera pass (4139 m), joining the Western trail, as described above, following an old road (only used bu the National Park authorities) down to the Northern park entrance known as Potosi and on to “Campo Alegre” farm (3970 m). There will be a transport waiting to take the group down (3-4 h) to a coffee farm in the Manizales area. This trail is more demanding than the other one, in time and physical effort, not that much in distance. Night at coffee farm. Ascent: 304 m / Descend: 267 m / Highest altitude: 4237 m / Distance: 10,5 Km / Activity duration: 5-6 h

Included meals: Breakfast, Picnic, Dinner

Day 7    
Relaxing morning at the beautiful Hacienda Venecia, an authentic coffee farm with exclusive coffee production. The farmhouses now restored to a hostel and a hotel, featuring charming paisa architecture. The Venecia Coffee farm has won several prizes for its excellent coffee and for this day, it is included a coffee tour to see how the coffee is produced and processed, as well as how to make really good Espresso!
Night at coffee farm.
Activity duration: 3-4 h
Included meals: Breakfast, Picnic, Dinner

Day 8    
Meeting at the coffee farm and transfer to Manizales airport, local flight (45 min.) to Bogota, transfer to the hotel.
Included meals: breakfast

Bogota - Salento (1919 m) - “La Argentina” farm (3483 m) - “La Linea” pass (4019 m) - “La Primavera/La Playa” (3769 m) - “El Encanto” lake (4026 m) - pass "La Linea" (4019 m) - optional ascent: Paramillo del Quindio (4745 m) - farm "Berlin" (3848 m) - “Berlin” pass (3964 m) - lake and camping "El Otun" (3933 m) - farm "Campo Alegre" (3970 m) - coffee farm Hacienda Venecia - Bogota

The cost of the full package of services -  from 1260 USD*
* cost for a group of 6 people 

Included:

  • Local English speaking AWT mountain guide fro day 1 to 6
  • Local assistant mountain guide from 4 people from day 2 to 6
  • Private transfers in and out in Bogotá
  • Private transportation throughout the entire program
  • National Park entrance fee and park’s insurance
  • 1 night in shared double rooms in hotel in Salento
  • 2 nights in shared double rooms in coffee hacienda in Manizales
  • 4 nights in shared tents at campsites
  • Coffee tour in Manizales
  • Quality mountain tents – 2 pax per tent
  • Group common campsite equipment
  • Mules for group/personal campsite equipment, food and pax personal gear  
  • Included meals specified in the day to day itinerary

Not Included:

  • Domestic and international flights
  • Personal camping equipment
  • Insurance
  • Tips
  • Everything not mentioned in the “Included” list

Note:

  • Domestic flight tickets in Colombia - from 180 USD
  • For an additional payment: single room and tent, equipment rental

Los Nevados National Park is located in the central part of the Andes mountain range, in the traditional coffee zone of Colombia. The protected area covers an area of 583 sq. km. and includes four states: Caldas, Risaralda, Quindio and Tolima. There are three large volcanoes covered with snow: Nevado del Ruiz (5321 m), Nevado del Tolima (5221 m) and Nevado del Santa Isabel (4965 m) and several alpine lakes and amazing colorful landscapes.

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