After holing up in our Medellin luxury apartment for a week, I had to see the Eje Cafetero, or Colombia’s coffee region. I’d never been, and it’s among one of the top destinations for clean, family fun in Colombia. Plus, wifey and I will probably never return to Colombia. And given we were so close in Medellin, I decided to escape for a day to see a traditional, paisa, coffee town: Jardin, Antioquia.
I chose Jardin because we could do it in one day and get back to Medellin. In hindsight, I should’ve allowed time to stay the night. We could’ve relaxed a lot more in the small town pueblo feel if we didn’t have to get back on the bus just a few hours after arriving. So if you visit Jardin from Medellin, take my advice and stay the night.
So we were in a bit of a hurry when we got off the bus. I spotted a mototaxi, motorcycles with benches and tarps built over to make taxis, which I had read do tours. We jumped into one of those and got a thirty minute tour relatively cheap. The town’s so small I’m pretty sure we saw all there was to see.
Jardin is a major producer of curuba, one of the many exotic fruits in Colombia. It also produces granadilla, tomate de arbol, and some other goodies I don’t recall. And coffee obviously. The big farms with tarps over them are curuba, and also featured are shots of green and red coffee beans.
The tour took us by two different cable cars, cable aereas. The town has two deep ravines / gorges on each side of it. And on the other sides of those deep plunges are mountains with miradores, looking sites to enjoy kick ass views. If I had enough time I’d have done both. But we only did one. Pics below.
Finally, despite Colombia’s being the undisputed global champ in producing the best quality coffee beans, it’s a well-known fact inside the country that all the best beans are exported to hardcore coffee-drinking countries like France, Italy, and Argentina where they fetch more money. I always knew this, but also reasoned that even the cheapest tienda coffee in Colombia is still pretty good. I wouldn’t say you ever suffer bad coffee in Colombia.
In Jardin, however, they serve kick ass coffee unlike anything I’d had in Colombia. It was so good I was drinking it for the taste, not just the caffeine. Imagine a coffee so good you keep ordering them because it tastes goo, not because you need to stay awake. That’s what it was like. I accidentally got jittery on Antioquieño coffee.
Of all the little villages I’ve seen in Colombia, Jardin was the most pleasant. I’d rate it a little higher than Villa de Leyva because it wasn’t cold. And I’d go further than that in saying, aside from San Andres, Jardin is the closest I’ve found to paradise on Earth (paradise with no coast). See the pictures of this beautiful town below.