7 Things to do in Pereira, Colombia
This list of 7 things to do in Pereira gives a short review of each of the things to do in Pereira, advise on accommodation in Pereira as well as information on getting to Pereira.
After constant fails in trying to find an apartment in Armenia I decided to check out Pereira for a few days. Initially I was going to stay for 5 nights but quickly changed my mind once I got there and ended up only staying two.
Not that there is anything particularly wrong with Pereira, it just wasn’t for me. Since I only stayed a very short time in Pereira this list only includes things in the city. There are plenty of things to do out of the city, but they are covered in the things to do in Armenia post.
7 Things to do in Pereira
1. Parque Lago
The first thing on this list of things to do in Pereira is Parque Lago. Basically, for the first five or so items on this list I just walked east on Carrera 8. Well, except for this first one where I walked a tad west since it was right next to my hotel.
Parque Lago was actually quite a pretty little park. Well, not really a park, and not rally a lake. But it has these fountains in it. They are not on 24/7, I guess I was just lucky.
There are a few nice churches in Pereira, as there are in every city of Colombia. A nice place to go to get out of the rain.
3. Fresh Market
This was quite a bit further east, across the road from Parque de Liberdad (I think). Seemed like a bit of a dodgy area to me, which is why I didn’t take a picture inside the market, but rather from across the road in the relative safety of the park.
4. Pedestrian Street
There are two pedestrian streets in Pereira. For me, neither were as nice to stroll down as the one in Armenia, but there are a few handy crafts and snacks to look at/taste along the way. Of course, a lot of Carrera 8 itself has these things too, just with cars going by.
5. Plaza De Bolivar
As in every city in Colombia, Plaza de Bolivar is a good place to people watch. It also has this statue and a small shopping center across the road with a small food court, a cinema, and some shops.
6. Plaza Victoria
Plaza Victoria has a shopping mall, which is pretty much like any other shopping mall. It has shops and a food court.
The more interesting thing is the actual plaza across the road where they have little events. I have been there two times in my life. Once was years ago while backpacking through South America with some friends. We were in Pereira for one night and had dinner at the food court. In the plaza was a modeling competition (I think) and people were selling beers in the street.
This time I went during the day and there was a band playing.
7. Lago La Pradera
The last thing on this list of things to do in Pereira is Lago La Pradera. Lago La Pradera is a park with a lake and a bunch of sporting facilities. My first impressions of this place were not very high, but after a little walk around I decided it was easily my favorite spot in Pereira (from the extremely short amount of time time I spent there).
If I was to live in Pereira (which I wouldn’t) it would be next to this park. There is “gym” equipment, playground equipment, a ~25m pool, a roller skating track, a small bmx track, a football pitch (soccer), two tennis courts, paintball, a lake with small boats you can hire, a couple of food stalls, a small go-kart track, and a fair amount of wildlife (mainly water-birds) which you can get surprisingly close to. It’s actually pretty impressive for a relatively small area.
To get to Lago La Pradera via public transport go to Carrerra 5 and catch the #23. There are other buses on that street that say Pradera but I’m not sure if they will actually do to the park. It drops you off on the corner. Follow it on your GPS or ask the bus driver to let you know when to get off. It costs 1,800COP (just hand to the driver on the way in, change will be given within reason) and takes about 15 minutes to get there.
On the way back get off at Carrerra 4 as they are one way streets.
Some Things I Didn’t Do in Pereria
I only stayed in Pereira for two nights and honestly, it was enough for me. I did research about more things to do but decided against doing them for various reasons, such as:
- Zoologico Matecaña that I read was closed, and I wouldnt have gone there anyway, because it’s a zoo.
- The botanical garden in the Universidad Technologica de Pereira. I read that you had to have a guide (not optional). I would have gone if I could just walk through on my own. Not a fan of guides.
- An Art Museum that I heard had no permanent exhibits so often there is nothing on display.
- The coffee park which I discovered is like a theme park. Not really my thing.
Getting to Pereira from Armenia
This is pretty straight forward. Just go to Armenia Bus Terminal, buy a ticket to Pereira and then get on the bus. The ticket was under 8,000COP and the ride was less than 90 minutes on a minivan.
Once at Pereira bus terminal either catch a bus into the city (number 6) or a taxi. I do not suggest walking in. I mentioned it to a friend (from Pereira) and she had a fit asking if I wanted to get robbed. I took the bus. It went the wrong way but then looped back around. I think it was 1,800COP but I’m not 100% sure. Usually I just hand over a 2,000COP note and they give you the correct change.
On the way out I caught a taxi. It cost 4,200 from Carrerra 5. It shouldn’t cost anything more than 5,000cop from anyway in the city.
I think #26 and #5 buses go by on Carrerra 5 but just look for anything with terminal on it and then double check with the driver.
Accommodation in Pereira
Whilst doing all these things to do in Pereira I stayed at the Hotel Sueños del Cafe.
Cost: 35,000COP/Night for a single room.
Address: Carrera 8a # 23-14, Pereira, 660004, Colombia.
Hotel Sueños del Cafe was fine for the price. The room was small but had a hot shower, cable, fan, good wifi, free tea/coffee, and free purified water, although apparently the water in Pierera is top notch straight from the tap.
Security was good and although it was not in the best side of the city, it was safe enough. There’s lots of food very close-by anyway so you don’t have to stray far if you get peckish at night.
The guy that checked me in was super friendly. Not the best English but I felt like he enjoyed practicing with me.
Book your stay at Hotel Sueños del Cafe or some other accommodation in Pereira.
Got anything to add to this list of things to do in Pereira? Let us know them (or anything else you want to say) in the comments 😀 .