Planning your trip to Colombia? Medellín is a city you must visit when in Colombia. We spent 3 amazing days here and it ended up surprising me so much! Between the amazing food, the history and culture, and the outdoor adventure just outside the city there is something for everyone to enjoy. When planning your trip, you’ll probably want to take the time of year and weather into account. So, when is the best time to visit Medellín? Keep reading to find out when to visit for the best weather and events year-round.
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Medellín is located in the northwest portion of Colombia in a valley of the beautiful Andes mountains. The city is huge with a population of 2.5 million people. With many comunas, or neighborhoods, spread out along the valley and up into the mountains, there is an endless amount of things to see and enjoy in Medellín. Medellín is quickly becoming a hot spot for tourists with amazing restaurants, bars, and events popping up all over the city.
I’m sure most of us have heard of Medellín’s violent past but I can assure you it is nothing like that today. While there are Pablo Escobar tours available, the focus of the city is truly on honoring those lost and rebuilding. If I had to choose a word to describe the theme of Medellín, it would be hope. It is amazing to see the unique and vibrant city that has been built out of so much violence and hardship. Instead of going on a tour to learn about Pablo Escobar, I encourage you to find museums and neighborhoods that honor this rebuilding and beauty.
We enjoyed having 3 days to explore all Medellín has to offer.
When to Visit Medellin
The weather in Medellín is just about perfect–they don’t call this “the city of eternal Spring” for nothing! In Medellín, you can expect mild weather with highs in the low 80s Fahrenheit (approximately 27 degrees Celsius) and lows in the 60s Fahrenheit (approximately 17 degrees Celsius). Because of its location from the Equator, you won’t experience many extremes outside of this temperature range. The climate is tropical so you can expect plenty of humidity.
Medellín does have rainy and dry seasons, though. The driest months are December to February with more rain in April, May, September, and October. Despite having a dry and rainy season, you’ll most likely experience rain showers here and there no matter the time of year. And even if the only time you can make it is during a “rainy” month, these showers are short lived and still allow for some rain-free hours during the day!
Festivals and events
Another thing to consider when planning your trip to Medellín is if there are any events or festivals you want to experience! Check out some of the more popular festivals held in Medellín each year:
January – Feria Tauria de la Candelaria which celebrates bullfighting. This festival was brought over from Spain in 1992
April – Medellin Book and Culture Festival; Expoartesano with traditional, indigenous, and contemporary art
June – Festival Internacional de Tango
August – Feria de Las Flores is the flower festival held for 2 weeks throughout the month
October – Maridaje is a gastronomic festival celebrating local food and restaurants, Flamenco Festival, Bird Festival celebrating exotic/tropical birds and Colombia’s vast biodiversity
November – Colombia Salsa Fest
December – Festival de las Luces y Alumbrados Navidenos is a great time to enjoy MDE covered in beautiful lights
Best time to visit Medellín
If you are hoping for the best weather, winter is the best time to visit Medellín with the least amount of rain between December and February. To experience some amazing cultural events and festivals, you’ll want to visit in January, April, June, October or November. January would be a perfect time to experience drier weather and the bullfighting celebration. However, with warm, moderate temperatures year round–there’s truly no bad time to visit Medellín! We visited during a “wetter” month and we just had a few showers here and there that didn’t ruin our trip at all!
What to pack
With the weather being pretty much the same all year, this list will be useful no matter which month you decide to visit! I found that the keys to being comfortable in Medellín was layers and an umbrella. With the humidity, too many layers was suffocating but with the cool rain and cool nights, a jacket was very desired. Here are some items I would definitely pack to visit Medellín.
Medellín is absolutely a safe city for tourists to visit, but just like any city in Latin America or the world… It’s a large city and you need to take precautions. I’m sure you’ve heard it before but I’ll belabor the point here.
- Know which neighborhoods to avoid. A quick Google search will give you a rundown of places to avoid at night and areas avoid all together.
- Be mindful of how much you drink and never leave your drink unattended.
- Carry your phone in your FRONT jeans pocket and don’t walk around with it in your hand.
- Leave expensive jewelry at home.
- Avoid hailing taxis if you can and ask for your hotel/hostel to call one for you. If you do need to hail one, make sure it’s marked and metered.
- Stick to touristy neighborhoods. El Poblado is a very safe and large neighborhood I felt comfortable walking around day and night.
My final tip isn’t so much of a safety tip but something to be aware of. Uber is widely used in Medellín but your driver may ask you to sit in the front. Uber isn’t “illegal” but the company isn’t liked by taxi drivers or the government due to competition and regulation rules. The app will work and is very quick and cheap but isn’t approved by authorities. To look less suspicious, drivers will have you sit in the front.
Medellín is an amazing city and was one of my favorite stops on our 2 week trip to Colombia. Medellín is known as the “city of eternal Spring” and boasts beautiful weather year-round. However, with a rainy season to contend with it can be tough to decide when to visit Medellín. There is truly no bad time to visit Medellín with mild weather and short rain showers allowing for visits during any month. Plan your visit around the rainy season or to attend one of many amazing events and festivals in the city. So, when is the best time to visit Medellín? Any time you choose!