While you’re in Medellin, here are our three most recommended plans to do in town and its surroundings:

Real City Tours’ Free Walking Tour

Unquestionably the best tour in Medellin. If you want to hear the fascinating story of the transformation of Medellin told in an original and amusing way, as you walk through the old streets of the city’s downtown, this tour is for you.

When doing this tour, you’ll explore areas of the city that a foreigner would normally not visit on their own. You’ll learn about Colombian history, politics, drug war, etc. bluntly and with a unique story-telling style.

Be prepared to walk, as this tour, TripAdvisor’s best rated tour in Medellin since more than 3 years ago, lasts for 3+ hours. To book your tour click here.

Cable car to Parque Arví

The perfect way to see and ride Medellin’s famous Cable Car.

The cable car, rather than a touristic attraction as it is generally conceived around the world, is an efficient mobility solution to integrate the poorest barrios or comunas into, allowing people from these margined sectors to have direct and easy access to the subway system. Medellin was the first city in the world to implement the use of cable cars in its public transportation system.

In the northeast of the city the most iconic cable car line can be found, in the Acevedo metro station, which connects the Line A of the Metro with the Line K of the cable car, which goes all the way up to Santo Domingo Savio, and then crosses all the way to Parque Arvi, our largest reservoir and Medellín’s main lung, right at the other side of the mountain.

Doing this 2-3 hours self-guided tour is a must, not only because of the breathtaking views while riding the cable car, but also because you get to walk around this beautiful park.

Must-see Guatapé and its imposing Rock

Guatape is one of the most picturesque townships in rural Antioquia, located just one and a half hour away from Medellin. Though 117 years old, Guatape started blossoming by the late 90’s when the country concluded the creation of an artificial lake from which it derives 37% of all its power via clean hydroelectrical generation. The thriving tourism industry that has flourished around the lake has made of Guatape one of Paisas’ best kept secrets for both adventure and relaxation.

There are plenty of activities to indulge in while visiting Guatape, but the following are the must do’s: Taking a boat tour on the lake, discovering the Guatape town and its pier, and climbing all 742 stairs of the majestic Guatape rock (also called El Penol rock), which is a 70 million year old granite monolith that stands 200 meters tall and that some believe to be part of an ancient meteor.