Guatapé (Pueblo de Zócalos)
Guatapé (Pueblo de Zócalos)

Guatapé (Pueblo de Zócalos)

Guatapé, 053840

The Basics

Most travelers opt to visit Guatapé on a day trip from nearby Medellin, and most tours combine sightseeing in the town with a visit to the region’s star attraction—the Peñol Rock (La Piedra del Peñol). The gigantic rock towers over the lake and affords incredible views from its summit, reached via 742 steps that zigzag up the cliff face.

Additional highlights include a walking tour of the town center, where you can admire the colorfulzócalos (reliefs) that adorn the buildings and shop for traditional souvenirs. Boat cruises are also a popular pastime, affording great views of the Peñol Rock, as well as the lakeside ruins of La Manuela Hacienda, Pablo Escobar’s former mansion, which was destroyed by a bomb in 1993.

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Things to Know Before You Go

  • There is a wide choice of cafés, restaurants, and souvenir shops in Guatapé—and it’s best to bring cash as cards aren’t widely accepted.

  • There is an entrance fee to climb the Peñol Rock, accessible only by climbing the steps.

  • It’s possible to swim and enjoy water sports at the lake, so bring your swimsuit and a towel.

  • A fun way to get around in Guatapé is a ride in one of the colourfully painted motorized tuk-tuks.

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How to Get There

Guatapé lies on the shores of the Guatapé Dam in the Eastern Highlands of Antioquia, around 50 miles (80 kilometers) east of Medellin. Most travelers arrive from Medellin, about a 1.5-hour drive, and regular bus services also run between the two towns (about a 2-hour journey).

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When to Get There

Guatapé is popular with both locals and travelers, and it’s particularly busy on weekends—time your visit for a weekday to avoid the crowds. Warm temperatures year-round make it possible to swim and enjoy water sports at any time, but the driest months are from December to February.

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Outdoor Activities on Guatapé Dam

Created as the reservoir of a hydroelectric dam in the late 1960s, the Guatapé Dam also serves as a popular recreational area for locals. As well as taking a scenic boat cruise around the lake’s islands, visitors can cool off with a swim or take part in water sports such as kayaking and Jet Skiing. If you don’t want to get wet, you can get your adrenaline fix ziplining over the lake or admire the views as you hike or cycle the lakeside trails.

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Frequently Asked Questions
The answers provided below are based on answers previously given by the tour provider to customers’ questions.
What are the nearest attractions to Guatapé (Pueblo de Zócalos)?