It’s easier to take the bus Medellin Guatape than order a vegetarian meal without speaking any words of Spanish. Find out the different ways of visiting Guatape from Medellin.
Medellin to Guatape: Tips
What is Guatape: It’s a little colonial town mainly famous for its massive monolith called “La Piedra del Peñol”. You can get to the top and contemplate the view. It’s located in Antioquia.
Bus Guatape – Medellin: Go to the Bus terminal at Caribe Metro Station in Medellin and buy your ticket at the counter 9 or 14.
Duration Bus Medellin – Guatape: It takes 2 hours. However, the way back can take longer if you arrive for the rush hour.
Price Bus Medellin – Guatape: Approx 5$.
Medellin Airport to Guatape: The Medellin airport is only 1h away from Guatape by taxi (Around 30$).
Group tour Medellin – Guatape: There is an affordable and cool tour if you don’t have time to stay 1 night in Guatape. We recommend this one.
Should you stay in Guatape: Because it’s 2-3h away from Medellin, I always recommend our clients to stay 1 night if they don’t book a private tour.
How long should you stay: There are not much to do in Guatape. Therefore, 1 night is enough. Another great option is to stay in San Rafael and plan a day trip to Guatape.
Our best tips: Avoid going on the weekend or a public holiday. It’s overcrowded.
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How to take the bus Medellin – Guatape
The department of Antioquia is filled with hidden gems and you’ll be surprised by the number of day-trips you can organize from Medellin.
Although there are some good and affordable tours to visit Guatape from Medellin, you should know that it is simple to do it on your own. By doing so, you will be able to stay one night in Guatape or San Rafael.
Let’s find out how to get there.
#1 Take The Metro To Caribe Station
Paisas love their aerial metro. It’s safe, fast and cheap.
First, you have to buy a ticket. It’s written Taquilla or Boleteria. The price is less than 1$.
How to arrive to Caribe Station (+)
- You have to take the blue line A and stop at Caribe Station. The metro line is open every day from 4h30 am to 11 pm.
- From there, you have to follow the signs indicating the Bus terminal – Terminal del Norte.
In case you don’t want to use the metro, take a taxi or an Uber. Depending on where you are, you should expect to pay around 15-20 000 COP.
Tell the driver to head to the Terminal North
#2 Find The Bus Medellin Guatape At The Terminal
In Colombia, bus terminals can be surprising at first sight. People are yelling random city names you’ve never heard before, and there is no big electronic whiteboard showing the next departures.
But there is a logic behind the chaos.
Each bus company has a desk office with a number on it. You just have to ask them when the next bus is leaving. Then, you pick up the one you want. Don’t forget to query for the gate – Puerta.
Info bus Medellin Guatape (+)
- There are two counters: 9 and 14 | Sotrapeñol & Transporte Guatapé la Piedra
- Price bus Medellin Guatape: 15 000 COP (price for March 2019)
- Frequency bus Medellin Guatape: Every 30 min
- First Bus Medellin Guatape: 5h30 am
- Last bus Medellin Guatape: 6h30 pm
- Duration Bus Medellin Guatape: 2 hours
#3 Where to stop with the bus
Guatape is famous for two reasons:
- The cute colonial town
- The astonishing view from a giant monolith, El Péñol.
The bus Medellin Guatape will pass by El Peñol first. You can get out of the bus to enjoy the view from the top of the granite before heading to town.
How to get to Guatape from el Péñon:
- Walking for 30-40 mins
- Grab a tuk-tuk for 10 000 COP
- Wait for another bus. Around 2 500 COP
Once in Guatape, you should buy your bus ticket in advance. The office is on your right if you stay on the main road when you enter the city. Thus you will avoid the bad surprise to have no seat available on the bus on the way back.
- The last bus leaves at 7 pm.
Some travelers prefer to start visiting the colonial town first then grab a tuk-tuk to El Peñol. It’s 100 % doable as you can catch on the main road the bus back to Medellin. However, you take the risk to have no seat.
There are many other experiences you can organize in Medellin.
Travel to Guatape from the Medellin Airport
Medellin’s airport is only 1 h away by taxi from Guatape. It’s easy to catch a cab and it costs around 30$.
Otherwise, you can once again use public transportation.
- Bus from the airport to Rionegro.
- Ask the driver to let you where the shared jeeps leave to El Peñol.
- Take that jeep. Departures are frequent.
- Once in El Peñol, take another jeep to Guatape.
- It costs around 5$ .
- The journey lasts 2-3 hours.
Book a tour Medellin – Guatape
I’m not against tours. It’s a great occasion to save time and meet other travelers. As opposed to this, you’re not 100% free and you won’t be able to stay overnight.
So, it’s up to you.
1# Visit Guatape with a group tour from Medellin
With a group tour, you will have to leave at 7 am from Poblado. It’s actually great as you need time to enjoy Guatape.
This tour includes:
- A visit of Guatape and El Peñol with a guide
- A 1-h boat tour on the lake
- Transportation & meals
I like this option because it is simple and economical. Visit the GetYourGuide page to book this experience.
2# Visit Guatape with a private tour
If you prefer a more personalized experience and be more flexible with the time departure, book a private tour. However, it won’t be the same price. 😉
That would be a good option if you want to catch a flight at the end of the day. In this case, ask the driver to drop you off at the airport.
Where to stay in Guatape
There are different accommodations in Guatape. If you don’t travel on a tight schedule, you should think about spending the night there. Thus, you will have plenty of time to explore the surroundings and organize your day without being stressed.
Try to get back to Medellin in the middle of the afternoon to avoid the rush hour from 5 pm to 8 pm.
1# My favorite hotels & hostels in Guatapé
- Bocoa hostel is surrounded by lakes and trees. You won’t be bothered by civilization. However, you’re not close to Guatape.
- Galeria Guatape hostel: Ideal location at only 10 min walk from el Peñol. The atmosphere is peaceful. A great pick if you want to rest and enjoy Guatape for an affordable price. No private rooms.
- Serendipity: Lovely owners. Top-notch services and facilities. Close to El Péñon. By the lake.
- El Trebol is an excellent pick if you’re looking for a stunning studio next to the lake.
- Bosko is the ideal romantic getaway for your honeymoon. Luxury glamping with top-notch services.
How to visit Guatape if you stay overnight
By taking the time to visit a place, you will always do it better than most travelers.
First, leave early from Medellin so that you can enjoy the day in Guatape.
Once you arrive in Guatape, you have to decide if you want to climb to the top of El peñol right away or not.
- If there is a clear sky and it’s a weekday, do it.
- Otherwise, wait for the early morning the next day.
Information Piedra del Peñol (+)
- Open at 8 am.
- Close around 5.30 pm.
- It costs approx 7$ .
- There are 750 stairs. Take your time.
- Tuk-tuk from Guatape to La Piedra del Peñol: 3$ – 10 min
There is actually not much to do in Guatape itself.
- Stroll among the colorful alleys, with facades covered by cute Zocalos.
- You can also be adventurous and head to the different islets with your pedal boat.
- Hiking the green hills
- Water activities on the lake: You can rent kayaks and a Pedal boat
- There are local agencies that organize day trips to hike to waterfalls next to San Rafael.
- Rent a boat and drink some beers
- Plan a day to San Rafael.
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