How to Spend 1 Day in Cali
With a culture rooted in salsa dancing, Cali is characterized by a vibrant and cheerful atmosphere. With some advance planning, you can see the sights and learn this sensual dance in the salsa capital of the world. Here’s how to make the most of just one day in the southern Colombian city of Cali.
Morning: City Sightseeing
Devote your morning to checking off Cali’s major sights, which include the National Palace, Plaza Caicedo, and the San Antonio Church and Museum. Though the historic center lends itself well to walking tours, a panoramic tour by bus lets you cover more sights in less time, making it ideal for travelers with time constraints. For a more personalized experience, opt for a private city and shopping tour that gives you time to shop for clothes and souvenirs at your own pace at places such as Loma de la Cruz Artisan Park.
Afternoon: Salsa, Salsa, Salsa
No visit to the world’s salsa dancing capital would be complete without taking part in a dance class. Regardless of your experience or ability, classes provide a fun way to experience an important part of Colombian culture. Choose between a shared or private class—during which you’ll receive the undivided attention of your instructor—or opt to combine your class with a traditional Colombian meal and a seat at a salsa performance.
Evening: Cali by Night
After the sun sets, Cali really comes into its own; the strains of salsa music drift across the city, and locals fill bustling bars to practice their moves. The safest way to get your bearings in the city after dark is during a nighttime tour, which typically cover the bohemian neighborhood of San Antonio, the gastronomic district of Granada, and the nightlife hub of Sixth Avenue. Some tours take you to the hilltop Sebastián de Belalcázar overlook, and you can top off your visit with sweeping views of the city by night.