Our Colombian Trailblazer tour is all about the off-road – the dirt bikes enabling us to get far off the beaten track and explore Colombia’s backcountry routes.
Colombia is a stunningly beautiful, diverse and vibrant country. Home to the northern tips of the Andes Mountains – the scenery, climate and landscapes of Colombia differ massively from region to region.
On this Colombian motorcycle tour we will ride at altitudes from 200m to 4,000m through jungle climates, alongside rice paddies and past snow-capped volcanoes. We’ll cross the ‘stone desert’ of La Calendaria, stay in traditional haciendas and ride between two Andes mountain ranges. When we’re not in the saddle, we’ll cross the Magdalena River on a wooden canoe, relax in hot spring pools and taste the delights of the world famous coffee region.
All of this and dirt biking too – this could be heaven!
Arrive in Bogota, Colombia’s sprawling and exciting capital city. You’ll be met at the airport and brought to the hotel where you’ll receive a briefing of the adventure ahead.
We then head out to a lively restaurant for a welcome feast of traditional Colombian dishes.
To avoid riding in Bogota’s chaotic traffic we will transfer to Villa de Leyva by minivan where we’ll be greeted by our fleet of dirt bikes lined up ready to go. Perfect!
This town is simply beautiful – home to old colonial buildings, cobbled streets and Latin America’s largest town square. We’ll enjoy lunch in the square before taking the bikes out for a short test ride on some nearby trails.
Our hotel overlooks the square and is conveniently located next door to an excellent little bar – how’s that for planning? Sit outside and enjoy a cold beer or gin & tonic whilst listening to classic rock music and watching life go by.
An incredible day’s riding as we pass through a variety of tracks and over the hills of the ‘stone desert’.
We ride through wonderful scenery and small colourful towns on our way to Ubate.
We finish off at an old farm hacienda, surrounded by pine forests and trails.
Stunning views today as we ride winding tracks and trails through the hills. We’ll stop in small villages and meet the locals that are growing fresh coffee in their back garden. We’ll stop for picnic lunch along the way and finish at a small guesthouse with a pool.
Riding high up into the Colombian mountains you really begin to realise the enormity of the Andes – the longest mountain range on the planet. Winding dirt roads and single track trails snake their way up and over mountain peaks, offering spectacular views over lush green forests and jungle.
In the afternoon we descend into the hot & humid conditions of the jungle. Here awaits amazing singletrack trails, plenty of river crossings and quirky bridges. It’s a great day of riding that finishes up at a private villa with our own personal chef, swimming pool and hot tub. Awesome!
Today is an absolute corker! We kick off with a treacherous ride along a (mostly!) disused railway that hugs a cliff edge alongside the Black River.
The locals still use the tracks for their ‘brujitas’ – tiny rickety cars powered by motorcycle engines. These adorable little train taxis double up as school buses for what is possibly the coolest and most beautiful school run ever!
We’ll ride through tunnels, pass alongside waterfalls and cross some nasty little bridges. It’s an exhilarating start to the day and man, is it fun!
It doesn’t let up either, after some beautiful tracks through the hills, we cut left and join a riverbed. Picking out our own trails, making some big splashes and letting the back end out on the wet sand, this section will leave every rider grinning from ear to ear!
There’s a small farm at the end of the trail and the family will prepare us a freshly cooked lunch and cold beers. From here, it’s a short ride to the private boat that will be waiting to take us over to the other side.
Spend the morning relaxing by the pool or exploring this beautiful town and its markets. We’ll meet for lunch beside the river and in the afternoon we can take the bikes to explore some riverside trails.
We can finish off the day with a couple of games of billiards in town with the locals. Just let them win occasionally!
Starting the day at a very warm altitude of just 250m, it’s hard to believe that you’ll be riding past snow-capped mountains later this afternoon!
We hit the dirt and follow the Magdelana River to Beltran. We then board small wooden canoes with our bikes and finish the journey up river to Ambalema.
Awesome dirt tracks take us back up into the mountains and alongside Nevado del Ruiz, a 4,000m high volcano that conveniently heats tonight’s swimming pool!
We finish the day at an incredible hotel surrounded by hot springs, waterfalls and humming birds. We’re staying at a very chilly altitude of more than 3,000m, so the hot swimming pools are the perfect place to finish the day!
We’re now getting into Colombia’s coffee region and we’ll ride mile after mile of rolling hills covered in coffee bushes and palm trees.
Salento is an achingly beautiful and colourful town, home to a vibrant mix of bars, restaurants and shops.
Today we can explore the coffee park in an old Willys Jeep, ride horses in the Cocora valley or just wander the streets to do a spot of souvenir shopping. The choice is yours.
In the evening we’ll visit the Tejo hall for a game or two – Tejo is a traditional Colombian throwing game that’s best enjoyed after a beer or two as it involves hurling metal discs at small targets containing gunpowder! It’s not easy, but when you do ‘make a bang’ it’s a great feeling, if slightly unnerving!
It’s time to say our goodbyes, so we’ll transfer you to El Edén International Airport in Armenia. If time allows, why not take a short flight up to Cartegena to spend a few days relaxing on a beach on the Caribbean coast? It’s so close, it’d be rude to not too!
Twin-share accommodation is included as standard – see ‘Optional Extras’ below for single room pricing.
On this tour we use 4* hotels in the bigger cities and the absolute best available in smaller towns & villages.
Please see the daily itinerary info for more details on the accommodation.
You’ll be collected from Bogota International Airport (BOG) on the morning of the first day. (You are of course welcome to arrive a day or two earlier, but there will be an extra cost for airport pickup).
At the end of the trip we will arrange transfers from our final hotel to El Edén International Airport, Armenia (AXM).
All boat fees for river crossings during the ride.
Your tour will be led and managed by a highly experienced member of the Ride Expeditions team (trained as a wilderness first response medic).
Ride Expeditions Ltd is committed to customer satisfaction and consumer financial protection. At no extra cost to you, and in accordance with ‘The Package Travel and Linked Travel Arrangements Regulations 2018’, all passengers booking with Ride Expeditions Ltd are fully insured for the initial deposit, and subsequently the balance of monies paid as detailed in your booking confirmation form.
The policy also includes repatriation if required, arising from the cancellation or curtailment of your travel arrangements due to the insolvency of Ride Expeditions Ltd. This insurance has been arranged by Towergate Travel through Evolution Insurance.
During the COVID-19 crisis, every rider that requested a refund was issued a cash refund.
All fuel for your motorcycle is provided by us.
This motorcycle tour is accompanied by a GPS tracker that displays our live location and track history on an online map. We will provide you with the link and login details which you can then share with your family at home so they can track your progress throughout the trip.
Breakfast, lunch and dinner is provided on most days.
Please see the daily itinerary to see what meals are included on each day.
A mechanic will be riding at the back of the group, ready to attend to any issues that may arise.
At least one member of the support team will have been trained as a Wilderness First Response medic.
An extensive medical kit including a defibrillator (AED) & stretcher is carried in the support vehicle.
We also have consulting doctors on call, 24/7, who are always ready to assist in the case of an emergency. Our doctors are fully briefed on all riders medical info prior to the tour, they know what we do, where we are riding, exactly what we have in our medical kit and what training our medics have.
Tours are accompanied by GPS trackers and a satellite messenger device so our doctor and office can see exactly where we are and can maintain communication.
If you have you your own suitable & reliable motorcycle at the start point, you are quite welcome to use that for this trip. If not, we will provide a rental motorcycle for you… Please see the Dates & Prices section for available bikes.
The cost of shipping the motorcycle to and from the start and end destination is also included
Since the day Ride Expeditions started running tours in Cambodia back in 2012, we have been dedicated to supporting the local community.
Part profits from every motorcycle tour are donated to M’Lop Tapang – a local Cambodian charity dedicated to bettering the lives of young children & their families.
A Ride Expeditions riding jersey with your name printed on the back.
This motorcycle tour of Colombia is accompanied by a 4×4 support vehicle with a trailer and spare bike, equipped to carry your luggage, an extensive medical kit + stretcher + defibrillator (AED), drinking water, snacks, tools, spare parts and a satellite messaging device.
We’ll welcome you with a bag of Ride Expeditions goodies which will include:
You’ll need to book a flight to arrive in Bogota, Colombia (BOG) on or before the morning of Day 1 of this trip. You will then fly out of Armenia, Colombia (AXM) on the last day of the trip.
It is important you either:
You are liable for any damage caused to your motorcycle. Please see 'Optional Extras' below for a damage protection plan.
It is a condition of booking that you obtain appropriate travel insurance that covers you for riding the same capacity motorcycle that you’ll be riding on this motorcycle tour.
The insurance must cover emergency evacuation, medical bills, repatriation etc.
Enduro / motocross style kit will be the way to go on this motorcycle tour, rather than adventure / road riding kit. We recommend you bring an extra layer and waterproofs to keep out the wet stuff.
You'll also want some decent armoured protection and please do bear in mind that we will sometimes be riding on the road... 'dress for the slide, not the ride!'
Yes, there are ATMs in the larger towns, but not the villages.
Don’t forget to tell your bank you are heading to Colombia, as without this information they will most likely think some rogue hacker is dipping into your account and promptly block your card.
Yes, and we advise you do. They’re cheap to top up and easily obtainable at the airport or small shops in Bogota.
This really should not be a problem in Colombia and we will make every effort possible to communicate your requirements to the places we visit. However, as we are not preparing the meals ourselves, we are unable to make cast iron guarantees. If you are going to go into a life-threatening spasm if you touch a stray peanut, then please let us know – we need to know that stuff, we really do.
Most nationalities can enter Colombia for 90 days without a visa. However, we always recommend you check the foreign office website for the most accurate and up to date information relating to visas and other entry requirements.
Follow this link for Colombian entry requirements. This link is to the UK foreign office website – if you are not a UK resident, please search for the equivalent info from your home country’s foreign office.
Visa costs, if applicable, are not included in the tour price.
To secure your place we simply need a 20% non-refundable deposit (subject to a minimum of £500). The remainder does not need to be paid until 60 days prior to the tour start date.
Yes. Here at Ride Expeditions, we take the necessary precautions to ensure that we protect both ourselves and you as the customer, with insurances covering financial failure, public liability, professional indemnity and employers liability (you will need your own travel insurance).
To obtain this insurance we must meet strict safety standards and local regulations. We must also carry out thorough risk assessments about all aspects of a tour before tyres can hit tarmac (…or dirt!).
Yes. All passengers booking with Ride Expeditions Ltd are fully insured for the initial deposit, and subsequently the balance of monies paid as detailed in your booking confirmation form. The policy also includes repatriation if required, arising from the cancellation or curtailment of your travel arrangements due to the insolvency of Ride Expeditions Ltd. This insurance has been arranged by Towergate Travel through Evolution Insurance.
Not riding the motorcycle, no (although this will of course depend on the extent of your limited mobility). However, we may be able to accommodate you in our support vehicle. We advise you to give us a call and we can discuss.
Wi-fi does exist at most of our overnight hotels, but not all.
To be legally riding in Colombia you are required to carry your local driving licence, which must cover the size of bike you will be riding. This will also be a stipulation of any travel insurance company too.
You may also need an International Driving Permit (IDP). An IDP is basically an official, multi-language translation of your driving licence.
Average group sizes are 8-9 riders and we limit the groups to 12 riders.
If you cancel your booking before departure, cancellation charges will be applied as follows:
Please refer to our Terms & Conditions for further info regarding cancellations, changes and transferring your trip to a friend.
The local currency is the ‘Colombian Peso’. You can either pick up some pesos back home or bring USD, GBP or EUR with you – you’ll easily be able to change these for pesos in Bogota. Alternatively, you can simply withdraw from ATMs when you arrive.
For the most accurate and up to date info on travel advice for Colombia, we advise you to visit the foreign office website.
Follow this link for Colombian travel advice from the UK foreign office. As we are a UK company, this is the official government advice we follow. If you are not a UK resident, we advise you search for the equivalent info from your own country’s foreign office, as travel advice may differ.
Colombia has two ‘wet seasons’. These are May and November. The rest of the year provides a fairly perfect climate for motorcycle touring.
The minimum required number for this trip to run is 6 riders. We reserve the right to cancel the tour if this number is not met and we will provide you with a minimum of 56 days notice. Please know that this is an absolute last resort for us and we will always do everything in our power to avoid this happening.
We accept GBP payments by Visa, Mastercard & American Express and direct bank transfers. Please get in touch if you would rather pay in another currency – we’ll do our best to accommodate!
There are two options for Colombia: plug type A is the plug which has two flat parallel pins and plug type B is the plug which has two flat parallel pins and a grounding pin.