Equestrian tourism is a new way to discover Colombia through a unique connection with nature.

Colombia is one of the most biodiverse and multicultural countries in the world. This makes it a destination that can be discovered and experienced in plenty of different ways, and one of them is equestrian tourism.

Equestrian tourism allows you to experience the biodiversity of Colombia first-hand, with short tours through beautiful trails, as well as crossings and immersive experiences of up to eight days in which you’ll discover new destinations at a horse's pace.

Riding on horseback offers a truly unique ecotourism experience, one that lets you enjoy nature through traditional country roads or even trails off the beaten path. This way you’ll be able to fully appreciate the regional and cultural heritage of rural tourism in Colombia.

Many places in the country are beginning to strengthen their ecotourism proposal, which is becoming equestrian tourism trendier among travelers.  

Some horses rest on their equestrian tourism route through Colombia | Colombia Travel
Photo courtesy of A Caballo por Colombia.

Discover the routes on horseback through Colombia and enjoy the wonderful landscapes of the country.

What do horseback experiences offer across Colombia's different destinations?

Some elements of most equestrian tourism tours are:

  • An approximate duration of 8 to 10 nights, although itineraries can be adjusted to fit travelers’ needs.

  • Groups between 8 and up to 12 people.

  • Ages between 12 and 70 years old.

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Get to know Barichara, Santander, one of the most charming towns of Colombia

The adventurous equestrian tourism journey to Barichara, Santander begins in Bogota, embarking on a road trip that’ll take you through the departments of Cundinamarca, Boyaca, and Santander, where you’ll reach the city of Oiba and spend the night.

The next day, your route will be lined with beautiful landscapes of green lush forests and mountains where gentle streams of crystal-clear water flow. This path leads to Charalá, an important town in the history of Colombia’s independence, where you can admire the cathedral and the imposing Saman de Arabia in the town’s main square.

On the fourth day, the adventure continues along the imposing Fonce river valley, under a beautiful tree archway, passing by sugar cane fields and having a wonderful lunch by the 200-meter-tall waterfalls of the Juan Curi river. Later, you’ll head to the town of Páramo and spend the night in a coffee plantation with a traditional family from the region.

These horseback riding tours save the best for last

Get to know the Cathedral of La Inmaculada Concepción on the equestrian tourism routes through Colombia.
Photo by Jess Kraft

Get to know La Inmaculada Concepción Cathedral in Barichara, Santander.

The next stop is the municipality of Socorro, one of the most popular and historically relevant in the region. Here, you will take a tour of the city and learn more about the history of this beautiful colonial town, listed as part of the Colombian Heritage Towns Tourism Network.

Your sixth day will take you closer to your destination after a couple of stops in the municipalities of El Palmar and La Cabrera, then passing through the old royal road onto the Barichara plateau and finally crossing the bridge that leads into this architectural jewel of colonial times. Here, you’ll stroll the beautiful cobbled streets, admiring white houses with red tile roofs, parks and churches until you reach the country estate on the outskirts of town where you’ll spend the night.

The next day, the equestrian tourism journey will take the riders to one of the most amazing spots in Colombia: the Chicamocha Canyon. The second largest in the world at 227 kilometers (141 mi) long and 2,000 meters (6,600 ft) deep, which offers breathtaking views to all those visit it.

Finally, on the last day of riding, you’ll enjoy the main destination of this tour: Barichara, Santander. This municipality is located about 3 hours by road from Bucaramanga, the capital of Santander. This gorgeous town is often considered the most beautiful in all of Colombia, and preserves its colonial architecture practically intact to this day. Some of the places the tour will take you through are:

  • The temple of the Immaculate Conception and San Lorenzo, located in the main square, built with stones carved by local artisans.

  • The chapels of San Juan de Dios, San Antonio and Santa Bárbara, smaller churches that you will love to visit.

  • The house of Aquileo Parra, former home of a former president, which now operates as a museum.

Because of its architecture, landscapes and its pleasant climate, Barichara, Santander, is an unmissable destination when it comes to equestrian tourism in the country.

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Equestrian tourism can also be experienced in Villa de Leyva, Colombia

Discover the Main Square of Villa de Leyva in the equestrian tourism trips that take place in Colombia.
Photo by Sebastián Sanint

The Main Square in Villa de Leyva is one of the largest of the country.

The journey to reach this beautiful town in the Boyacá department begins at the Sisga Lagoon, one hour from the capital of Colombia, where you’ll find horses and guides to begin your adventure to Villa de Leyva.

From there, you’ll head towards the Suesca Lagoon to enjoy the beautiful landscapes of the Bogota savannah before reaching the old railway station, which operated until around the mid-20th Century. In this first leg of the trip, you'll spend the night in Cucunubá, a beautiful town popularly known for making handicrafts, garments and virgin wool blankets.

The next day, you’ll pass through lush native forests of centenary oaks to reach the colorful town of Ráquira, nicknamed “the Artisan Capital of Colombia”. The beautiful Monastery of La Candelaria will be the ideal place to spend the night.

Discover Villa de Leyva, Colombia and its beautiful landscapes

Los Pozos Azules are part of the landscape that you can experience while doing equestrian tourism in Colombia.
Photo by Outdoorplace

The Pozos Azules in Villa de Leyva are one of the wonderful attractions you can see while horseback riding in Colombia.

Upon leaving the monastery, the journey then involves crossing the La Candelaria desert in the direction of the Villa de Leyva valley. The horses will rest in a ranch on the outskirts while you enjoy a delicious dinner in one of the restaurants that Villa de Leyva’s great gastronomic variety offers. The night will be spent in one of the beautiful colonial hotels in town.

Having arrived at Villa de Leyva, you’ll then go on a tour of the town, which also belongs to the Colombian Heritage Towns Tourism Network. Some of the stops included in the tour are:

  • The Main Square, the largest in the country.

  • Casa del Cabildo, a historic relic near the Main Square.

  • Casa de Nariño, a museum dedicated to preserving various antiques and items that illustrate colonial life.

  • Claustro de San Agustín, the first church in town.

Without a doubt, getting to know Villa de Leyva is an adventure that should be experienced to the fullest by riding there on horseback.

Discover Colombia and its many ecotourism experiences on horseback, making the best nature's beautiful trails to appreciate amazing destinations.