Ride downhill through spectacular mountain, forest and countryside scenery. Descend from 4130 meters (13,550 feet) in Los Nevados National Park to 2130 meters (6988 feet) in Manizales. Transportation from Manizales included.
Activities and trip highlights: • Ride through the páramos and cloud forests of Los Nevados National Park • Descend 2000 meters (6560 feet) in 30 kilometers (19 miles) • Enjoy hot springs at Termales del Ruiz • Ride a cable car and get a great view of Manizales
Overview: Manizales is a biker’s city. Bike shops abound, roads have bike lanes and many people get around on two wheels. Road bikes, however, are not very common. With the Los Nevados National Park so close to the city it’s easy to understand why mountain bikes rule in Manizales.
Los Nevados is the most famous mountain park in Colombia and if you want to cover a lot of ground and see many of the park’s features in one day there’s no better way than riding through it on a mountain bike. In this adventure you ride through a páramo, a unique mountain landscape of succulent plants, lagoons and rocky cliffs that exists only in Colombia, Venezuela and Ecuador. You also ride through the Los Nevados cloud forest, one of the most biodiverse places in the country and home to countless exotic birds and flowers.
This bike ride begins at high altitude --- 4130 meters (13,550 feet) above sea level. Thankfully most of the day is spent going downhill. This enjoyable non-technical ride is a great way to experience Los Nevados and appreciate the scenery of the Coffee Region countryside.
Itinerary: Drive Up to Los Nevados and Ride Down to Manizales
Your guide picks you up early in Manizales with your bikes loaded in the back of a 4x4 jeep. You drive through scenic mountain roads and stop for breakfast at a restaurant with a view. After breakfast you continue on to Los Nevados National Park and unload your bikes at 2130 meters (6988 feet) above sea level. The first part of your ride is on a paved road, a good place to get a feel for your bike and give your legs a warmup. Most of the road is downhill with a short uphill section. You ride on pavement for only a few minutes before turning into a dirt path. This is where the fun begins. From there it is all downhill on dirt paths and unpaved roads for the next four hours. You will ride through a páramo in the higher elevations. As you descend the wide open páramo gives way to the dense cloud forest and you ride with the trees bordering you on both sides of the path. You have lunch at Termales del Ruiz where you can take a dip in a pool fed by a natural hot spring.
After a long downhill ride you leave the park and get back on pavement. You pedal on a rolling countryside road with sweeping views of hills and farms. After a total of about 5 hours of biking you arrive in Manizales. A final treat is in store: a cable car ride gives you a great view of the city and gets you to a high point near the bike garage. After dropping off your bikes your guide drives you back to your accommodations in Manizales.