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Colombia Map




Bogotá is the capital and largest city of Colombia. it is the seventh largest city in all of Latin America. Bogotá is sometimes referred to as the “Athens of South America.” Bogotá is located in the Andes mountains, at an elevation of 8,660 feet. The city’s architecture ranges from old colonial styles, to modern apartment towers. Bogotá became the capital of Gran Colombia (a confederation of the current countries Venezuela, Ecuador, Panama, and Colombia) in 1821, and reminded the capital of Colombia when the confederation split in 1830.

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Cartagena served as an important Caribbean port for the Spanish New World Empire from the 16th through 18th centuries. Because the city was a key target for English and French pirates, Spanish forces fortified the city and built huge military fortresses to protect it. Nevertheless, the city was frequently plundered.

Today, Cartagena is a bustling tourist town. The colorful old town boasts colonial architecture and many museums, palaces, and churches.

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Medellín's climate gives it the nickname “City of Eternal Spring.” Situated in a narrow valley, the city is flanked by jagged peaks on nearly every side. The city is known for its industry and commerce, especially textile manufacturing. Today, Medellín is the third largest city in Colombia. It was once known as of the world's most violent cities because of its drug cartels. Violent crime in the city has largely been curtailed and now Medellín is a popular tourist attraction. It was recently named the most innovative city in Latin America.


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Ciudad Perdida

Cuidad Perdida

650 years before the Incas built Machu Picchu in Peru, the Tayrona built the city of Teyuna in the Sierra Nevada mountain range. When the Spanish invaded Colombia, Teyuna was abandoned and lay hidden in the jungle for 350 years. The city was rediscovered in 1972, by gold-seekers who pillaged Tayrona’s graves for gold. In 1975 the Colombian government claimed La Ciudad Perdida (the Lost City), over three-quarters of which is still buried deep in the jungle.

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Amazon Rainforest

Amazon Rainforest

The Amazon is the world’s largest tropical rainforest. It covers 2.1 million square miles of land, primarily in Brazil, Peru, and Colombia. The Amazon is least 55 million years old, and is home to about 2.5 million insect species, as well as 40,000 different plant species and almost 1,300 different species of birds. The Amazon rainforest accounts for more than half of the world’s remaining rainforests. Scientists estimate the forest holds 390 billion individual trees of 16,000 different species. It is referred to as the ‘Lungs of the Planet,’ as it produces 20% of the world’s oxygen.

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San Agustín Archeological Park

San Agustín Archeological Park

San Agustín Archaeological Park is home to over 500 monoliths, statues, petroglyphs, and sarcophagi. It is considered the largest ancient cemetary in the world. Most of the stone carvings in the park were created between 100 AD and 1200 AD. Little is known about the creators of the carvings - most of what is known about comes simply from interpretations of their carved statues of animals and human figures.

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Andes Mountains

The Andes make up the world’s longest continental mountain range. The range stretches 4,300 miles in length, 430 miles in width, with an average height of about 13,000 feet. The Andes extend through Venezuela, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, Bolivia, Chile, and Argentina. The mountains are separated into three divisions based on their climate: the Tropical Andes, the Dry Andes, and the Wet Andes. The Andes are part of the American Cordillera, a chain of mountain ranges that make an almost continuous line of mountains that form the western “backbone” of North, Central, South America and Antarctica.


Fast Facts About Colombia

Population: 48,786,000
Area: 440,800 square miles
Capital City: Bogotá
Largest City: Bogotá
Currency: Colombian Peso
Official Language: Spanish
GDP (Gross Domestic Product) $378 billion

Ten Interesting Facts About Colombia

- The name “Colombia” comes from the last name of Christopher Columbus
- Colombia is the only country in South America that has a coastline on both the Pacific Ocean and Caribbean Sea
- When the Spanish arrived in 1499, they made the area a Spanish colony and called it New Granada
- Colombia is one of the most biologically diverse countries on earth, with rainforests, savannas, mountains, and 1,800 miles of coastline on two oceans
- Colombia’s most important trading partner is the United States, which buys 40% of the country’s exports
- Simon Bolívar led Colombian forces to defeat the Spanish and declare independence in 1819
- Colombia is nicknamed the “gateway to South America”
- Colombia native Shakira is one of the most successful Latin American pop stars of all time
- Colombia is home to the world’s second largest population of Spanish-speaking people
- Venezuela has the world's highest rate of inflation. This means that prices rise and the currency loses value.


Colombia Flag

Colombia Flag

The large yellow band symbolizes the gold in Colombia’s land, the blue stands for the Pacific Ocean and Caribbean Sea, and the red symbolizes the blood spilt in the fight for freedom. Alternately, some describe the colors representing more elemental concepts such as yellow for sovereignty and justice, blue for loyalty and vigilance, and red for valor and generosity