Armenia is the youngest city of all the capitals of the Colombian departments. The official date of foundation of the city is October 14, 1889. The city probably got its name thanks to the Armenians who came to South America. Although initially the new village was named after the then president, soon, under the influence of the world-wide news about the Ottoman Armenian genocide of 1894-97, which the whole Christian world stood up for, the city was given the final name of Armenia. Today it is the center of the most economically prosperous region of the country. The Colombian city with such an unexpected name is the true coffee capital of the country. The country that grows and produces the unique and softest-tasting coffee in the world. Many Colombian cities, by tradition, have a double name. Armenia also has a second name – the “city of miracles” for its extraordinary, rapid development, which its inhabitants contributed a lot to. Armenia is one of the cleanest and most beautiful cities in Colombia. There are no large buildings here, and its main attractions are two famous museums – the Quimbaya Museum of the Disappeared Indian Culture (it stores archaeological samples of the disappeared Indian culture) and the unique, the only Coffee Museum in the world.
Coffee festivals are held in the city. Colorful festivals and theatrical performances attract more and more tourists to this beautiful coffee city. Every year in June, the National Coffee Festival (Reinado nacional del cafe) is held near Armenia, the obligatory elements of which are the Jeep Parade, the selection of the National Coffee Queen and the Theater Festival (Tipao). This spectacle is very beautiful and especially loved by tourists. Candidates for the title of coffee queen dress up in folk costumes and perform national traditional dances.
Guests can also visit the Nevados National Park and climb the snow-capped peaks. Several thousand tourists come to this holiday from all over the country and from abroad.
In recent years, ecological, or rather, “coffee” tourism has become increasingly popular in the region. Guests stay at the estates of coffee plantation owners – haciendas, and have the opportunity not only to see with their own eyes the whole process of growing, collecting and processing coffee beans, but also to take an active part in this.
In the vicinity of Armenia, there is a zone for growing gourmet coffee – Cafetera. Armenia-Malisales-Pereira – sinners were the first to plant coffee in the coffee triangle at the beginning of the 19th century. The far-sighted local priest appointed the penitent obedience – to atone for sins, plant a coffee tree. Coffee, bananas, bamboo and coffee haciendas are a unique landscape found only in the Colombian coffee triangle. They want to add it to the UNESCO World Heritage List.
Coffee National Park is located 20 minutes drive from the city of Armenia and is entirely dedicated to the traditional drink of Colombia, its main export product and national symbol. Here, in the process of exciting walks and games, adults and children immerse themselves in the world of coffee, discover its new varieties (about 60 species of this plant are grown in the park), and watch the work of park employees caring for coffee bushes. The history and stages of coffee production: from planting a coffee bush to packaging an already finished product, are presented in more detail at the local museum. Here you can also see the traditional costumes of harvesters, models of a typical coffee hacienda, and more. others
The park, covering an area of 12 hectares, has a unique transport system. Tourists can travel by funicular, whose cabins offer stunning panoramas of the valleys of Quindio, or by rail in a train with an old steam locomotive. The park is also crossed by many paths, walking along which you can get to a picturesque suspension bridge 90 m long, an observation tower (18 m), from where the landscapes of Armenia seem even more beautiful, or to the Fairy Garden, in which the characters carved in stone “live” Colombian legends. You can also move around the park on horseback.
The park also contains the Orchid Garden, a typical peasant village whose houses are built in the shape of the number 7 in order to protect against evil spirits, and the Bamboo Forest.
Here you can ride the longest roller coaster in Colombia, a Ferris wheel, inflatable boats in the pond and other attractions, as well as witness a unique orchid show: 120 mechanical flowers dance and sing to the national Colombian music.
In the park you can buy not only the highest quality coffee in exclusive gift boxes, but also coffee-based products: Kafesitas biscuits, coffee arequire (dessert made from coffee with milk), blackberry jam and coffee.
The Botanical Garden is located 6 km from Armenia, in the town of Kalarka. This is a unique climatic zone that contributes to an amazing species diversity. The main attraction of the botanical garden is one of the 160 butterfly gardens (mariposario) in the world, which contains about 170 species of butterflies from all over the world.