Guatapé Colombia: The Ultimate Day-Trip from Medellín

About Guatapé, Colombia

Guatapé in Colombia is a small colorful village a few hours away from Medellín. It’s safe to say that Guatapé is one of Colombia’s most colorful towns. Right next to the village you can find the famous La Piedra del Peñol, the huge rock with incredible views over the lakes of Guatapé. Although for many people this is enough reason to visit this charming town, there’s way more to do here! I will obviously tell you everything you should know to plan your trip to Guatapé Colombia in this blogpost! 

colombian man on streets
guatape woman walking

How to get to Guatapé

Like all over Colombia, getting around by public transport is the way to go. From Medellín it’s really easy to get to Guatapé. At first, take the metro to Caribe Metro Station (Line A) or Uber to Terminal Norte and after that get yourself a bus ticket at desk 14. Once you have your ticket, the agent will direct you to the right bus stop. The busses leave around every 20 minutes and will take you about 2 hours to reach Guatapé.

Note: since a few months there has been a lot of landslides and huge rainfall in this area, which brought lots of damage to the roads. Because of this, always inform yourself what the situation. – march 2023

Busticket Price:

17.000 COP (€3,50)

Use Busbud for all your busses in colombia!

On a tour

Another option to visit Guatapé is on a group tour. Most tours will cost you around €30 or more and will include transport, entrance fees, guides and sometimes lunch. Even though this is a more expensive option, this could be something for you if you like the convenience of joining a group tour. Or if you simply want to meet fellow travelers.

locals in guatape

Best things to do in Guatapé, Colombia

Even though Guatapé, Colombia is relatively small, there’s enough to do to fill up your days here! 

Visiting El Peñol

One of the most popular and best things to do in Guatapé Colombia, visiting La Piedra del Peñol. Hiking up the 220m high rock offers you a beautiful view over the lakes. It’s an easy hike up with 740 steps and should take you about 15/30 minutes, depending on your fitness. 

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el peñol rock guatape colombia
guatape colombia rock

Entrance Times & Fees

La Piedra del Peñol is open every day from 8AM – 6PM and costs 20.000 COP (€4) per person. To have the best views, hike up the rock on a clear day. It started to pour rain when we were up there, however this created a moody vibe to the lakes!

Walking around the colorful town

Guatapé village is full of colorful houses and is sometimes even called the most colorful town on earth. And even these colors are here for a reason. Apparently businesses decorate their building to tell what’s inside and even families paint their house to tell the story of their heritage.

Wander around town with a camera and get lost in the charming alleys. Besides the beautiful houses you’ll find enough artisanal boutique shops and cute cafes!

guatape colorful street
umbrellas guatape

Plaza del Zocalo

Make sure to stop at the most colorful plaza in town. Enjoy the vibrant colors with some ice cream, which you can find all over town!

Another beautiful street is ‘Calle de Los Recuerdos’.

locals on plaza in colombia

Activities on the lake

The Guatapé lakes are not only here for the pretty views. If you’re there with good weather, there are a lot of activities you can do here.


Jet skiing


Boat tours


lake activities guatape

Helicopter Flight

You’re not only able to admire the views of the Guatape lakes from the top of El Peñol, but also from a birds perspective. If you’re looking for an once in a lifetime experience, hop into a helicopter and enjoy!

How to get around in Guatapé

This little colorful town isn’t the biggest, so everything is on walking distance. If you’re visiting El Peñol, there are tuk-tuks or taxi’s waiting for you to bring you to the centre of Guatapé which is about a 10-minute drive away and a tuk-tuk ride should cost you around 10.000 COP. However if you prefer walking, it should be a 45 minute to hike from the rock to the village.

tuktuk colombia

How long to stay in Guatapé Colombia

As I have said already, Guatapé is a perfect day-trip from Medellín. However, if you’re having some more time, I can recommend for you to stay 1 or 2 nights instead.

There’s enough to do so you won’t get bored and therefore a perfect relaxing getaway from the busy city of Medellín. On top of that, you’re limited to the time of the final busses back to Medellín, if you’re only visiting on a day-trip. Make sure to check the schedules at the bus stop.

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streets guatape
local shop guatape

Where to eat

As I was only in Guatapé for a limited time I can’t recommend you a lot of restaurants from my own opinion, but here are a couple places that offer amazing food!

  • Namasté, vegan & vegetarian food
  • La Fogata, bandeja paisa. If you kindly ask to make the plate vegetarian, they’re happy to do so! (local)
restaurant colorful

Best Time to visit

Located close to Medellín, which is known to be the city of eternal spring, you can expect warm weather throughout the year. The driest months are between December – March. However even during these months it can rain, so basically prepare for possible rain showers all year. Despite the rain we had ourselves in December, the town was still as beautiful!

Try to go on a weekday, lots of Colombians head to Guatapé during the weekends.

church guatape

Where to sleep

Even though you can enjoy Guatapé as a day-trip, spending a night there gives you the opportunity to explore the colorful streets without the crowds. I recommend checking out Airbnb, as there are a lot of unique cabins for a reasonable price. I’ve stayed a night in the ‘Momot Kabine’ and absolutely loved it!

Explore all stays in Guatapé Colombia here!

colombia road
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Simone Vromans

Simone is the owner and writer of Travel With Simone! By sharing these travel guides, she hopes to help you plan your epic adventures and inspire you to go on that long-overdue trip! 💛

travel with simone

About Simone

Hi there, I’m Simone and the writer behind this travel blog. By reading my guides, I’m hoping to inspire you to travel more mindfully and have epic adventures all over the globe!

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