Located in the northern part of Quindio, Filandia is a traditional Colombian village that oozes natural charms amidst the central Andes mountain ranges. Stroll along streets of picturesque 2-storey houses, and inhale the delicious waft of coffee that lingers in the air. Around the corner, a good meal or two awaits in one of the best local restaurants in Quindio. Filandia is a simple town that promises simple pleasure. Here’s sharing an itinerary for a day trip in my favourite municipality of Quindio:
Kickstart your Filandia day trip with a cup of Colombian coffee
Easily accessible from Armenia and Pereira, the journey to Filandia is a visual treat of green rolling mountains. Breathe in the fresh air and marvel at the wide expanse of the central Andes mountains. Aim to arrive in the late morning and have your first cup of Colombian coffee either at the tastefully decorated Dulcinea Cafe Bar or head to the no-frills Jahn Cafe for a cuppa alongside locals. Both cafes are by the main square of Filandia.
In case you didn’t know, Quindio is part of the Coffee Cultural Landscape of Colombia (CLCC) endorsed by UNESCO. Hence, regardless of the municipality that you are visiting in this region, don’t pass up on any chance to drink some good coffee!
Dulcinea Café Bar
Address: Carrera 7 calle 7 #7-01 esquina edificio el quijote, Filandia, Quindio, Colombia
Opening Hours: Daily 10 am - 9 pm except Friday and Saturday, which closes at 10 pm.
Contact: +57 312 6503451
Website: Dulcinea Café Bar
Address: Calle 6ª # 5-45, Filandia, Quindio
Opening Hours: Daily 7.30am - 11pm.
Contact: +57 317 4353732
Website: Jahn Café
Explore the main sights and shops in Filandia
Similar to most town squares in Colombia, the parque in Filandia houses the principal church with its iconic blue, white and gold facade - Templo de la Maria Inmaculada - which was founded in 1905. Well-preserved colonial architecture captures a slice of the past and time seems to slow in this heritage town. Take a moment to visit the church or walk around the town square and check out various local crafts such as the handwoven reed baskets. Souvenirs in Filandia are more value-for-money than that of her popular sister town, Salento, in spite of the latter offering more shopping options.
Templo de La María Inmaculada
Address: a 5-80, Cl. 7 #52, Filandia, Quindío, Colombia
Duration: 15 to 30 minutes required
Contact: +57 321 7424845
Enjoy lunch at one of the best restaurants in Quindio
Possibly one of the best restaurants in Quindio and maybe even Colombia, Helena Adentro Restaurant and Bar in Filandia serves local fusion cuisine with the simplest ingredients and an extensive drinks menu. Don’t miss the choripan (chorizo y pan) - a combination of bread and sausage with caramelised onions. I have no idea how such simple comfort food can taste so good! Beyond the quality taste, every corner of Helena Adentro screams of an insta-worthy shot. Prices are slightly high for Colombian standards, but Helena Adentro is worth it.
Helena Adentro Restaurant and Bar
Address: Cra. 7 #8-1, Filandia, Quindío, Colombia
Price: from 10,000 COP / ~ 3.50 USD
Opening Hours: Daily from 12 noon
Duration: around 1 to 2 hours required.
Contact: +57 312 2978002
Website: Helena Adentro Restaurant and Bar
Ascend the Illuminated Hill (Mirador de Filandia)
Standing proudly on the slopes of the outskirts of Filandia, the Illuminated Hill (known as el mirador de Filandia) is the town’s much-raved attraction. This 27m observation tower is accessible via jeep or by walking from the main square. Shaped like a spaceship, this sturdy timber structure affords 360° panoramic views and you can see other municipalities of Quindio and even the city of Pereira on clear days!
Keep a lookout for the spectacled owls, blue crowned motmots and hummingbirds amongst other exotic species. Interesting explanation boards will give you insights into the surrounding area and local myths.
Mirador de Filandia
Address: Ulloa, 63 Filandia, Quindio
Price: 5,000 COP / ~1.70 USD
Opening Hours: Daily 9am - 6pm
Duration: around 1 - 2 hours required
Access: 20 minutes leisure walk or 5 minutes by jeep from town center
Take a coffee tour or enjoy sunset at Finca el Mirador
At Finca el Mirador (take a jeep from the main square of Filandia if you are not driving), one can expect quality coffee, desserts and a beautiful view. “Mirador” refers to lookout, and that’s the best feature of Finca el Mirador, a local coffee farm & cafe! Although the views are spectacular regardless of the time of day, nothing beats the pink and orange hues that cast a gentle warmth at sunset.
Established by an entrepreneurial owner who aspires to achieve sustainability in his hometown, Finca el Mirador also offers guests coffee tours to better understand the process of coffee from crops to fresh brew. Grab a drink here and if you are lucky, have a chat with John, the friendly owner.
Note: Should you wish to have a taste of ruralism, there are different accommodation options here to suit different budgets.
Finca el Mirador Filandia
Access: Drive or take a jeep from main square of Filandia
Contact: +57 318 4434027
Website: Finca el Mirador, Filandia
Visit the ‘Daughter of the Andes’ in Colombia
In case you were wondering, ‘Filandia’ has no links to the country ‘Finland’. The name of this Colombian town can be deciphered from the Latin words “fila” (daughter) and “andia” (Andes Mountains), which means “Daughter of the Andes”. This mystical name suits the cooling highland tropical climate of Filandia, which stands at an altitude of 1923 metres above sea level. If you plan to visit, don’t forget a windbreaker or raincoat as it can sometimes get chillier with sporadic rain.
Getting to Filandia, Quindio: Take a bus from Armenia bus terminal. Each way (about 45 minutes to an hour) costs 4,200 COP / ~1.50 USD. Bus conductor will board the bus mid-way to collect the fare.
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