Discover Colombia in South America

Colombia with its capital Bogotá is located in South America (Northern South America, bordering the Caribbean Sea). It covers some 1,138,911 square kilometres (slightly less than twice the size of Texas) with 45,013,000 citizens. Spanish is the language commonly spoken by people in Colombia. Ecuador, Peru, Panama, Brazil and Venezuela are bordering countries.

Colombia is the only country in South America with coastlines on both the North Pacific Ocean and Caribbean Sea. Traveling in Colombia is definitely worthwhile, however: it is really important to understand that there are still many areas of the country that are considered too dangerous for tourism. The climate is tropical along the coast and eastern plains; cold in the highlands. Much of Colombia is in the Andes, which means there is very nice mountainous scenery to be found. On the other hand, there are also nice beaches to be found in the lowlands. The currency of Colombia is the Colombian peso. Most banks and money changes will accept major world currencies such as the US dollar and the Euro. Be sensitive. Colombians are a proud people, and are proud of the progress they've made. Do not make jokes about the drug trade in Colombia, as it has ruined many innocent citizens' lives. Drink only bottled water outside the major cities. The water in major cities is safe. Anywhere else, never get drinks with ice cubes in them. Clothing, including lingerie is particularly well-regarded as high quality and very affordable. Leather garments, shoes and accessories are also of interest to foreigners.

Pictures from the Colombian capital

Have a look at our dedicated photo collection to get a view of what Bogotá is like. We have selected more pictures from Bogotá on our dedicated gallery page.

Awesome photos provided by Panoramio are under the copyright of their owners.

Landscape, climate, hints for travelling

National Tourism Office

Website: Colombia Tourism

Carrera 8
N260 9-83 Bogota

Phone: +57 327 4900

The terrain offers flat coastal lowlands, central highlands, high Andes Mountains, eastern lowland plains. The average density of population is about 40 per km². The climate in Colombia can be described as tropical along coast and eastern plains with cooler in highlands. Possible natural disasters include highlands subject to volcanic eruptions or occasional earthquakes or periodic droughts.

To reach someone in Colombia dial +57 prior to a number. There are 7,500,000 installed telephones. And there are 42,160,000 registered mobile phones. The cellular networks operate on frequencies of 850, 1900 Mhz. Websites typically end with the top level domain ".co". If you want to bring electric appliances (e.g. battery charger), keep in mind the local 110V - 60Hz.

Description of the flag of Colombia

Three horizontal bands of yellow (top, double-width), blue, and red; the flag retains the three main colors of the banner of Gran Colombia, the short-lived South American republic that broke up in 1830; various interpretations of the colors exist and include: yellow for the gold in Colombia's land, blue for the seas on its shores, and red for the blood spilled in attaining freedom; alternatively, the colors have been described as representing more elemental concepts such as sovereignty and justice (yellow), loyalty and vigilance (blue), and valor and generosity (red); or simply the principles of liberty, equality, and fraternity
note: similar to the flag of Ecuador, which is longer and bears the Ecuadorian coat of arms superimposed in the center.

National administrative regions of Colombia

Historical background information

Colombia was one of the three countries that emerged from the collapse of Gran Colombia in 1830 (the others are Ecuador and Venezuela). A nearly five-decade long conflict between government forces and anti-government insurgent groups, principally the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) heavily funded by the drug trade, escalated during the 1990s. More than 31,000 former paramilitaries had demobilized by the end of 2006 and the United Self Defense Forces of Colombia as a formal organization had ceased to function. In the wake of the paramilitary demobilization, emerging criminal groups arose, whose members include some former paramilitaries. The insurgents lack the military or popular support necessary to overthrow the government, but continue attacks against civilians. Large areas of the countryside are under guerrilla influence or are contested by security forces. In October 2012, the Colombian Government started formal peace negotiations with the FARC aimed at reaching a definitive bilateral ceasefire and incorporating demobilized FARC members into mainstream society and politics. The Colombian Government has stepped up efforts to reassert government control throughout the country, and now has a presence in every one of its administrative departments. Despite decades of internal conflict and drug related security challenges, Colombia maintains relatively strong democratic institutions characterized by peaceful, transparent elections and the protection of civil liberties.

Demographic Information

Colombia has 477 persons having reached the age of 100 years. Ladies make up for 393 of this count (which is 82%). 3,897,473 young citizens below the age of five (and make up for 9% of the total population). 17.8 babies are born per thousand citizens.

Colombian Age Distribution

Blue bars represent male citizens. Red bars represent female citizens. A pair or bars represents a single age group spanning five years each. Data has been released 2011.

Gender Distribution (Full Population)

Total share of male (blue) and female (red) citizens of the total population of Colombia

Growth of Population (per thousands)

Babies born per thousand citizens (blue) and deaths (red) over the past ten years.

Geography And Economy Facts

Geographic Fact Data
Summary Continent: South America
Neighbours: Ecuador, Peru, Panama, Brazil, Venezuela
Capital: Bogotá
Size 1,138,910 square kilometers (km² or sqkm) or 439,736 square miles (mi² or sqmi)
slightly less than twice the size of Texas
Population 45,013,000

Economy Facts

Technology and Economy Data
Currency Name: Peso, Currency Code: COP
Country Top Level Domain (cTLD) .co
Telephone Country Prefix +57
Mobile Phone Connections 42,160,000
Landline Phone Connections 7,500,000
Military Spendings 3.4% (of GDP, Gross Domestic Product)

Country Position in World Rankings

Information about single country attributes and how these compare against the rest of the world. The information below is compiled with data from 2013. As such, it may differ a bit to the Information above in the text (which is from 2010).


Type of Data Value World Rank
Area 1,138,910 (sq km) 26

People and Society

Type of Data Value World Rank
Population 45,745,783 29
Population growth rate 1.10 (%) 107
Birth rate 16.98 (births/1,000 population) 117
Death rate 5.33 (deaths/1,000 population) 176
Net migration rate -0.66 (migrant(s)/1,000 population) 141
Maternal mortality rate 92.00 (deaths/100,000 live births) 80
Infant mortality rate 15.46 (deaths/1,000 live births) 106
Life expectancy at birth 75.02 (years) 99
Total fertility rate 2.10 (children born/woman) 111
Health expenditures 7.60 (% of GDP) 71
HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate 0.50 (%) 67
HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS 160,000 32
HIV/AIDS - deaths 14,000 20
Obesity - adult prevalence rate 17.30 (%) 112
Children under the age of 5 years underweight 3.40 (%) 106
Education expenditures 4.50 (% of GDP) 93
Unemployment, youth ages 15-24 23.0 (%) 43


Type of Data Value World Rank
GDP (purchasing power parity) 511,100,000,000 29
GDP - real growth rate 4.00 (%) 79
GDP - per capita (PPP) 11,000 110
Labor force 23,080,000 29
Unemployment rate 10.30 (%) 111
Distribution of family income - Gini index 59 8
Investment (gross fixed) 24.10 (% of GDP) 58
Taxes and other revenues 28.5 (% of GDP) 103
Budget surplus (+) or deficit (-) -0.50 (% of GDP) 53
Public debt 40.20 (% of GDP) 91
Inflation rate (consumer prices) 3.20 (%) 83
Central bank discount rate 5.00 (%) 72
Commercial bank prime lending rate 11.22 (%) 72
Stock of narrow money 41,900,000,000 49
Stock of broad money 151,200,000,000 48
Stock of domestic credit 165,500,000,000 44
Market value of publicly traded shares 208,500,000,000 34
Current account balance -13,290,000,000 177
Exports 59,960,000,000 55
Imports 55,490,000,000 54
Reserves of foreign exchange and gold 34,740,000,000 47
Debt - external 78,640,000,000 52
Stock of direct foreign investment - at home 111,500,000,000 37
Stock of direct foreign investment - abroad 32,560,000,000 42


Type of Data Value World Rank
Electricity - production 56,280,000,000 (kWh) 47
Electricity - consumption 46,870,000,000 (kWh) 48
Electricity - exports 1,294,000,000 (kWh) 51
Electricity - imports 8,220,000,000 (kWh) 29
Electricity - installed generating capacity 13540000 (kW) 47
Electricity - from fossil fuels 32.9 (% of total installed capacity) 178
Electricity - from hydroelectric plants 66.6 (% of total installed capacity) 25
Electricity - from other renewable sources 0.4 (% of total installed capacity) 77
Crude oil - production 944,000 (bbl/day) 22
Crude oil - exports 777,900 (bbl/day) 18
Crude oil - imports 10 (bbl/day) 85
Crude oil - proved reserves 2417000000 (bbl) 34
Refined petroleum products - production 316,500 (bbl/day) 42
Refined petroleum products - consumption 287,000 (bbl/day) 45
Refined petroleum products - exports 52,680 (bbl/day) 57
Refined petroleum products - imports 6,045 (bbl/day) 148
Natural gas - production 11,260,000,000 (cu m) 43
Natural gas - consumption 9,080,000,000 (cu m) 51
Natural gas - exports 2,180,000,000 (cu m) 39
Natural gas - imports 40,290 (cu m) 75
Natural gas - proved reserves 134,100,000,000 (cu m) 51
Carbon dioxide emissions from consumption of energy 72,310,000 (Mt) 46


Type of Data Value World Rank
Telephones - main lines in use 7,127,000 26
Telephones - mobile cellular 46,200,000 29
Internet hosts 4,410,000 24
Internet users 22,538,000 18


Type of Data Value World Rank
Airports 862 8
Railways 874 (km) 95
Roadways 141,374 (km) 33
Waterways 24,725 (km) 5
Merchant marine 12 105


Type of Data Value World Rank
Military expenditures 3.80 (% of GDP) 26

Based on the content from The original article can be found here based on the work of these users. Geography information is based on the data provided by, CIA world facts book Edition 2010, 2013 and 2014, Unesco, DBpedia, wikipedia, national statistical offices and their census releases as well as other sources.