Because of its bad reputation, many travelers decide to skip Cali. What a mistake!
The city, also known as the Capital of Salsa, is a must to visit if you want an insight into the Colombian culture. While it’s damn hot during the day, a cool breeze starts blowing around 5 pm. It’s the daily signal that tells locals it’s time to hang out in the streets. Then, at night, folks head to salsa bars for practicing their move and spend a good time.
From a historical point of view, you won’t get many things to do. There are a few churches and museums scattered between the Center and San Antonio.
However, it’s a fantastic place to learn about Salsa and an excellent base to explore the area. Indeed, the Pacific Coast is only 4 hours away, and the mountains and rivers around offer many activities like hiking, canyoning, and paragliding.
Like any big city in the South of America, I advise you to take a cab at night and don’t show off with your valuables.
Granada is the party district of Cali. It's also one of the wealthiest. Most of the tourists don't know about it. Therefore, you won't meet many of them. There are delicious restaurants and it's one of the safest areas in Cali.
San Antonio is the kingdom of the backpackers. They like to hang out in the park, drinking cheap beers at night from the shops around. Locals love to do it. There are many good restaurants and lovely cafes, which are perfect stops after a short wander in the district. Be cautious when it's late at night.
San Fernando is an up and coming district. There is no tourist. Many local bars and restaurants near Parque del Perro. Pance is a small town located in the mountains, at 2 hours from Cali. It's a perfect option to get some fresh air and swim in cold water.
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Things to do in Cali
While there are not many things to do in the city of Cali (expect dancing Salsa), the surroundings offer many great activities and day trips.
For us, good restaurants and exciting nightlife are important while traveling. We gathered our favorite picks on an interactive Map. Look for "Colombia Insider - Eat and Party like a local in Colombia" on Mapstr!
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