The Best Trips for Solo Travellers in Colombia

Rafting in San Gil, Colombia | © Chris Bell / The Culture Trip
Rafting in San Gil, Colombia | © Chris Bell / The Culture Trip
Photo of Chris Bell
23 March 2018

Solo travellers are an increasingly common sight in Colombia as the country becomes safer to visit and new destinations open up. Solo travellers generally fall into two categories – those looking to escape the backpacker circuit and those looking for sociable hostels and new traveller friends. So, with that in mind, here are the best trips for solo travellers in Colombia.


A delightful little historical town with some of the Coffee Region’s prettiest buildings and a multitude of excellent hostels, cafes, and restaurants, Salento has quickly established itself as a backpacker favourite. It’s perfect for solo travellers – there’s plenty to do to keep you busy, and the backpacker scene is sociable and welcoming. You won’t have any issues meeting fellow travellers in Salento, that’s for sure. Check out El Viajero Hostel for a great, sociable accommodation option.

Salento | © McKay Savage / Flickr

Casa en el Agua Hostel

One of Colombia’s coolest and most popular backpacker hostel, Casa en el Agua has gained fame as Colombia’s only floating island hostel. Why sleep near a beach when you can choose what basically is the beach and you can step out of your hammock and dive directly into the warm Caribbean waters surrounding you? It’s also a great solo traveller trip as the natural limitations of the hostel mean that it’s impossible not to get talking to fellow travellers and meet new friends.

Casa en el Agua, Colombia | © Sandra Medina Crockett

El Rio Hostel

The hostel voted the Best in Colombia and second-best in Latin America at the Hostelworld ‘Hoscar’ awards in 2017, El Rio is a dream destination for backpackers in Colombia, especially solo travellers. Located on a paradise stretch of river in the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta, with its own private beach, El Rio is a hostel designed especially for socializing. With its beachside bar and regular riverside parties, if you’re looking for fun and new friends in Colombia, then El Rio should be your first port of call.

Tubing in Palomino

This is a perfect activity for either type of solo travellers; whether you’re one of those that prefers solitude and escaping the crowds, or likes to be more sociable, tubing in Palomino is for you. If you enjoy the peace and quiet then head up to the river early in the morning, when you stand a good chance of being entirely alone in the beauty of the Sierra Nevada mountains, or if you fancy a group, then grab some people from your hostel and head down at sunset.

Tubing in Palomino | Chris Bell / © Culture Trip 


Colombia’s second city is the backpacker hub of Colombia these days: travellers are flocking to ‘The City of Eternal Spring’ to enjoy its warm weather, myriad interesting attractions, and buzzing social scene. It’s this last element that makes it perfect as a trip for a solo traveller – there are excellent activities on offer including some excellent walking tours, and plenty of sociable and friendly hostels to meet people.

Casa Elemento

Another of Colombia’s most popular backpacker hostels, Casa Elemento is located near the town of Minca and is perched on a mountain ridge in the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta mountains. Famous for its giant hammock overlooking the mountains and the distant Caribbean, Casa Elemento’s social aspect makes it an excellent trip for solo travellers in Colombia. Meals are communal and the hammock is the ideal place to chat and swap stories with fellow Colombia explorers. And there are miles of mountain trails to explore if you don’t fancy meeting new people.

The famous Casa Elemento hammock | © Chris Bell / The Culture Trip

San Gil

The Colombian extreme sports capital is perhaps the best place to visit if you’re travelling solo in Colombia. Why? For starters, there’s no issue with your solo status making it harder to book tours or more expensive, as there are backpackers lining up to enjoy such activities as white-water rafting, caving, rappelling, and paragliding. And secondly, there’s a friendly hostel scene where you can wind down with new friends after a day of being adrenaline junkies.

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