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Colombia: The Colombian Amazon

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As with the other Andean countries which share territory in the Amazon basin, Colombian Amazonia occupies a third of the national territory but is cut off both physically and culturally from the rest of the country. But with a rich ecosystem hosting a staggering array of tropical flora and fauna, and distinctive indigenous communities sprinkled along the river banks, it’s a beguiling destination for adventurous travellers.

With a history of disputed borders, the region has passed through turbulent times is now regarded as safe and peaceful, and tourism - still in its infancy among foreign visitors - is on the up. Little English is spoken, but the people are very friendly, and offer a genuine welcome.

There are no roads here. The only municipalities in Colombian Amazonas are the jumbly river port Leticia - accessible only by a two-hour flight from Bogotá and locally by river - and the idiosyncratic eco-village Puerto Nariño, reached solely by boat. The remaining 22 mostly riverside indigenous settlements - where there is no concept of private property and where evangelical churches thrive - earn a living from fishing, farming and a little tourism and are run by traditional self-governing councils. 

The timeless, languid pace of life here in the sultry rainforest, where the seasonal rising and falling of the river’s water level is the most significant annual event,  contrasts markedly from the rest of Colombia. Perhaps there is more in common here with the Amazonia of Brazil and Peru, the borders with which converge on Leticia, and which you can visit on the same day. 

Our holidays to The Colombian Amazon

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Silvia Market

Off the beaten track Colombia: San Agustin and the Amazon

Private journey

13 days from £3,079pp

Things to do in The Colombian Amazon

Colombian Amazon

Discover indian culture in the Colombian Amazon

Puerto Narino, Colombia

Visit eco-village Puerto Narino in Colombia's Amazon

Leticia, Colombia

Visit the Colombian Amazon from Leticia

colombia amazon wildlife

Spot wildlife in the Colombian Amazon

Our insider tips for The Colombian Amazon

Claire Milner

Claire Milner

Pink and grey dolphins can be spotted frolicking here in the Amazon river itself when the water level is low, or in the the lagoons reached by canoe through flooded forest when it is high: statistically you have an 80% chance of sighting them so keep your eyes peeled!


Lina Fuller

A satisfying Colombian Amazon experience is as much about visiting the indian fishing and farming communities set on the riverbanks as it is about observing wildlife: this is an unrivalled opportunity to observe a way of life unchanged over the centuries. Check out Mocagua, where murals of jungle animals decorate the wooden homes.  


Natalie Paiva

Combine a few days based at Calanoa Lodge in the rainforest with a night or two in Leticia to soak up the atmosphere of an Amazonian riverport, or the unique, bucolic eco-village Puerto Nariño.


Sandra Sandoval

Spend a day or a few hours at the well managed Tanimboca Nature reserve, where you can ride across the treetop canopy on a zipline, go kayaking or just explore the jungle trails on a guided exploration. 

What our experts say

I have visited the Amazon in all South American countries and the experience in each country is different; I particularly like the region in Colombia for its rich cultural opportunities: visiting unique eco-village Puerto Nariño and authentic indian communities. But that's not to ignore the magical sight of pink dolphins breaking the water's surface.

Claire Milner

Claire Milner

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