Top 15 Things to do in Medellin for free or really cheap

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Medellin is one of the most popular cities in the Antioquia region of Colombia and that’s for a good reason!

There are so many things to do in Medellin that our list will never be completely inclusive. But we tried to add as much as possible in this guide. Lots of these activities are for free or very cheap!

We also compiled a guide with all the cool tours you can do in and around Medellin. If you’re looking for activities on a day trip from Medellin, you can check those out too!

Parque Explora is one of our favorites. It might be designed for kids to explore science, but we loved it nevertheless. Parque Explora is a very big science discovery center and it can get seriously busy sometimes.

It’s a great place to try hundreds of science experiments, visit the aquarium or reptile center.

The park is close to the ‘Universidad’ metro station and the entrance fee is around 10€. You could easily spend an afternoon there. You can find the Parque Explora website right here.

Good to know

  • Parque Explora is located at metro stop Universidad on Line A.
  • Entrance fee 27.000 COP - 7,5€
  • Opening hours Closed on Monday
  • Tuesday - Friday: 8.30 - 17.30h
  • Sat - Sun - Holidays: 10 - 18.30h
  • Time needed 2 - 3 hours
Parque Explora
Having fun at Parque Explora
Parque Explora
Let your inner child free at Parque Explora

Parque de Los Deseos

The park of dreams and the Planetarium are located right next to Parque Explora and they are one of many awesome things to do in Medellin.  The surrounding park is popular with locals and students.

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Read the time on a giant solar clock or try to talk to each other with the help of two giant half moons and a little science.

At times, there are events and festivals at this park. If you’re lucky, you might be able to catch a movie on a big screen here!

Parque de Los Deseos is a free park.

Good to know

  • Parque Los Deseos is located at metro stop Universidad on Line A.
  • Entrance fee free of charge
  • Opening hours 24/7

The Planetarium

We visited the planetarium to watch the show. This show is an educational video about the universe, displayed onto the sphere ceiling of a large round auditorium.

Meanwhile, you can lay back and try not to start dreaming.

Different shows play at different schedules. If you want to catch a specific show, check the program here. Shows are in Spanish, but we still liked it, even if we didn’t understand everything.

After paying the entrance fee, you get a tour around the museum, a show in the huge dome, and access to loads of interactive games (again: not just for kids!)

Good to know

Museo de Antioquia and Plaza Botero

We’re not big fans of musea, but we visited this museum anyway. I guess if you’re not that much into museums, like us, this one could be skipped.

The museum is partly about Botero, an influencial artist born in Medellin. The other part offers other art: sculptures, paintings, photography, …

Check the current exhibitions on the museum website.

To understand what Botero art is all about, you could just as well visit the Plaza Botero for free. The park is filled with massive statues and a lot of people. It’s a great pastime just sitting in the park and watch life unfold before you.

Good to know

  • The museum is located near metro stop Parque Berrio on Line A.
  • Entrance to Plaza Botero free of charge
  • Entrance fee Museo de Antioquia for tourists 18.000 COP - 5€
  • Opening hours Monday - Saturday: 10 - 17.30h
  • Time needed a lot! we went though quickly and it took 3 hours

Parque Berrio

Parque Berrio is not really a park. It’s more of an urban plaza.

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The park is usually full of life. A lot of people hang or sit around, watching the world walk by and meeting up friends.

It’s really the center of all things in Medellin, geographically and lifewise. If you get off the metro at the Berrio station, you can easily start walking around this area.

Most sights and activities are within walking distance from Berrio.

Good to know

  • Parque Berrio is located at metro stop Parque Berrio on Line A

Jardin Botanico

The Jardin Botanico really is a park! These botanical gardens have thousands of different flowers and plants to admire. It’s a great place to escape the city for a few hours.

The garden covers an area of 14 hectares and you can find thousands of flowers and hundreds of bird species here. Or just sit back and relax!

Good to know

  • The botanical garden is located near metro stop Universidad on Line A
  • Entrance fee free of charge
  • Opening hours every day from 9 - 16.30h

Pueblito Paisa and Nutibara Hill

Pueblito Paisa is a cute little village inside the city park of Nutibarra Hill. From here, you can get a bird eye view over the surrounding city. It’s actually a replica of how the villages on the countryside look.

Locals, as well as tourist visit this place to get away from the hustle of the city and feel like they’re in a coutryside village for a few hours.

Good to know

  • Pueblito Paisa is located near metro stop Industriales on Lin A
  • From there you can either hike or get a taxi
  • Entrance fee free of charge

Take the cable lift up to the viewpoint

The cable lift is part of the public transportation system in Medellin, as you can read in our backpacking travel guide.

Travel all the way up to the Spain Park Library. The trip itself is fun and you get loads of views over the city.

The platform at the library is an awesome viewpont to gaze over the valley and the city.

Good to know

  • Take the A line to Acevedo, then the K line to Santo Domingo
  • Price Get a regular metro ticket. Line A and Line K are included in the price

Go watch a soccer game

Medellin, like the rest of South America, has a love for soccer.

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In this city alone, there are 2 soccer teams and there are regular soccer games with other teams in the country. If you’re into soccer and want to experience a Colombian game, get your ass over to the Atanasio Girardot stadium in Laureles!

Visit El Castillo de Medellin

El Castillo is a large house in castle style. It’s set in a beautiful environment and it’s a sight you might not expect in this location!

You might think you went through a portal and ended up in medieval Europe!

Inside the castle, a museum awaits you. But you can choose if you want to go in or not.

Good to know

  • El Castillo is located near metro stop Aguacatala on Line A
  • Entrance fee 13.000 COP - 3,5€
  • Opening hours Mon to Fri: 9 - 17.30h
  • Sat - Sun - holidays: 10 - 17h
El Castillo de Medellin
El Castillo de Medellin

City tours and specific tours

Free walking tour

Start off with a free walking tour so you can already get a feel of this amazing city. This tour should be done on the first or second day of your visit!

The best and most popular walking tour in Medellin is the Real City Tours Free Walking Tour. It’s so popular that you’re required to book it in advance, but it’s very worth it.

The tour lasts for 3,5 hours and you can join it for free. But you should tip the guide afterwards.

Pablo Escobar City Tour

The Pablo Escobar City Tour is a quite controversial tour that is for sale in Medellin.

Some love it, others hate it. We decided not to go on this tour because we thought it was too expensive and we had some doubts about where our money would go to.

Multiple operators offer the tour and apparently, you get to learn tons about Pablo Escobar. Depending on which tour you book, prices vary from 20€ to 50€ per person. Other people in our hostel went on this tour and they were only moderately excited about it.

Comuna 13 Tour

Comuna 13 used to be the most dangerous part of the city. The suburbs were once called the slums of Medellin and the area is built up against the Western mountain side outside of the actual city center.

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Today, the area has undergone a transformation and it’s known for its beautiful street art and artist scene.

Comuna 13 tours are pretty popular and travelers in Medellin are encouraged to visit the neighbourhood. Read these tips before visiting Comuna 13.

More tours

In and around Medellin you can join walking tours and cultural tours, but also loads of adventurous activities, like paragliding, hot air balloon flights, and much more.

Find more interesting tours in our article about the different Medellin tours.

Get out of the city for a day

There are loads of interesting places to visit on a day trip from Medellin.

  • Go hiking in Parque Arvi
  • Check out the cute town of Guatape
  • Visit Jerico or Jardin villages
Parque Arvi Cable Lift
Parque Arvi Cable Lift

Things to do in Medellin Colombia

So, these are a few of the millions of things you can actually do when traveling to Medellin.

I’m pretty sure you can find tons of other things still.

We recommend going for a long walk in the city too. Just let your feet take you somewhere and enjoy the culture and daily life in the city.

Let us know if we forgot your favorite Medellin activity, so we might add it to our list!

Also, check out our backpacking guide for Colombia and our amazing itinerary for Colombia!

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Things To Do in Medellin

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Alex

Very interesting post and useful information. Thank you for that 😉

Karin @ GirlAstray

In spite of having lived in Colombia for more than a year, I somehow managed to skip Medellin! I´ll keep it for the next time 🙂 It seems to me that the city is a lot more developed when it comes to infrastructure than Bogota – btw how did you find the safety?

Great guide! I definitely would also love to visit the Parque Explora (I imagine my husband will love exploring this place, he’s a geek) and the Parque Arvi 🙂

Flo

I’ve heard amazing things about Colombia and Parque Explora sounds like a great place to explore! Guatape looks beautiful as well – how long does it take to get there?

The street food here looks so delicious! I haven’t been able to go to South America yet, but Colombia is high on my list. I had only really read about Bogota, so it was nice to learn about a new city!

Danielle Jones

Great post, very informative. The cable cars look like an amazing experience! Thankyou for Sharing

Very interesting post. Looks like a great place to visit

Thank you for your post! I’m in Medellin now with my kids – hopefully, it’ll be fun!

The street food would be the thing I want to try the most here! I can’t believe I haven’t been here yet 😦

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