Guatapé Photo Essay

Even though I am a real Colombian pueblo fanatic, the one village I haven’t explored (and one that’s so close to Medellin) is Guatapé and the famous nearby monolith, El Peñón. A couple of Sundays ago I hopped on a bus for the hour and a half  journey to see what everyone is talking about.

After wandering around its brightly colored streets, seeing lots of drunk cowboys and witnessing the insanely gorgeous view from El Peñón, I realized how much I missed exploring new pueblos this year.

Besides, who can really get enough of drunk cowboys?

Welcome to Guatape

Welcome to Guatape!

Guatape hill

Guatape’s steep hills

Guatape church

busy central park and church

Guatape truck

colored panels lining the walls

Guatape horseback riding

why walk up the mountain when you can go horseback?

view from El Peñón

view from El Peñón

Guatape cowboy

enjoying the view

El Peñón de Guatapé

hey look, a ginormous rock!

To get to Guatapé, take the metro to the Caribe stop and follow the pedestrian bridge to Terminal del Norte. Buy a 12,000 COP bus ticket and ask the bus driver to let you off near the parque central along the lake.

To get to El Peñón, head to the park and jump in the back of a colectivo (less than 2,000 COP) who will let you off by the path leading up to the monolith. If you’re lucky, there will be a local with a few horses waiting to charge you 5,000 COP to get up the hill.

Alternatively, you can take a mototaxi that will drive you from the park straight up to El Peñón. Viewing of campesinos borrachos seems to be best on Sundays.

  • The view from the top of th rock is amazing.  Did you go on a boat trip around the lake?

  • Hi Ruth! Unfortunately, no I didn’t. I got to the pueblo kind of late on Sunday. I’m definitely planning to go back and do it though.

  • I canNOT get over the paint jobs on those buildings! So cool!!

  • WOW!!! What a charming and colorful city. Love the pic of you on a horse. :)

  • The best part is there are dozens of pueblos just as colorful as Guatape spread throughout Colombia :)

  • Thanks girl!

  • Steph –

    I just found your blog through Facebook! Love it! And I LOVE Colombia! Always great to find other people promoting the beautiful and diverse country too! 

    We traveled to Guatapé earlier this year too! The town is so beautiful right? The views from the top of El  Peñol are still some of the best views I’ve ever seen! 
    You can see my post on El  Peñol and Guatapé here if you like:

    I will be back to your blog soon! 

  • Thanks Steph! The views from there are pretty breathtaking for sure!

  • Beautifully vivid colors, looks like the place has a lot of civic pride everything  looks very well turned out.  

    The monolith is quite reminiscent of the Sugar Loaf in Rio, even looks as though it might be the same kind of rock.  

  • Glad you made it there. Hope you had a great time, at El Encuentro or wherever :)

  • I just went up for the day, and I loved it!

  • Simone Anne

    Gorgeous! Love all of the colors. Thanks for sharing!