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Colombia

Colombia
Republic of Colombia
Last Updated: November 15, 2013

Exercise increased caution in Colombia due to crime and terrorism.  Some areas have increased risk.  Read the entire Travel Advisory.

Do not travel to:

  • Arauca, Cauca (except Popayan), Choco (except Nuquí), and Norte

Exercise increased caution in Colombia due to crime and terrorism.  Some areas have increased risk.  Read the entire Travel Advisory.

Do not travel to:

  • Arauca, Cauca (except Popayan), Choco (except Nuquí), and Norte de Santander (except Cucuta) departments due to crime and terrorism.

Reconsider travel to:

  • Several departments throughout the country due to crime and terrorism.

Violent crime, such as homicide, assault, and armed robbery, is common.  Organized criminal activities, such as extortion, robbery, and kidnapping for ransom, are widespread. 

A terrorist organization, the National Liberation Army (ELN), continues plotting possible attacks in Colombia.  They may attack with little or no warning, targeting tourist locations, transportation hubs, markets/shopping malls, local government facilities, hotels, clubs, restaurants, places of worship, parks, major sporting and cultural events, educational institutions, airports, and other public areas.  The Colombian government has not yet signed a peace agreement with the ELN.

U.S. government personnel cannot travel freely throughout Colombia for security reasons. 

Read the Safety and Security section on the Country Information page.

If you decide to travel to Colombia:

Arauca, Cauca, Choco, and Norte de Santander Departments

Violent crime, including armed robbery and homicide is widespread. 

Terrorists groups are active in some parts. 

The U.S. government has limited ability to provide emergency services to U.S. citizens as U.S. government personnel cannot travel to these areas without permission from the Embassy’s Regional Security Office.

Visit our website for Travel to High-Risk Areas.

Several Departments throughout the Country 

Violent crime, including armed robbery and homicide, is widespread in the following departments. 

Terrorists groups are active in some parts.

Reconsider travel to:

  • Antioquia department north of Medellin
  • Caqueta department
  • Casanare department
  • Cesar department (Exercise increased caution in Valledupar)
  • Cordoba department (Exercise increased caution in Montería)
  • Guainía department
  • Guaviare department
  • Meta department
  • Nariño department (Exercise increased caution in Pasto)
  • Putumayo department
  • Valle del Cauca department (Exercise increased caution in Cali and the metropolitan area)
  • Vaupes department
  • Vichada department

The U.S. government has limited ability to provide emergency services to U.S. citizens as U.S. government personnel cannot travel to these areas without permission from the Embassy’s Regional Security Office.

Visit our website for Travel to High-Risk Areas.

Travel Restrictions for U.S. Government Personnel

U.S. government personnel must request advance permission for any travel outside of Bogota and the Atlantic Coast corridor from Cartagena to Santa Marta, and sometimes are required to travel in armored vehicles or carry personnel trackers.  U.S. government officials and their families are generally permitted to travel to major cities only by air.  They cannot not use inter- or intra-city bus transportation or travel by road outside urban areas at night.  During daylight, they are permitted to use only the following routes:

  • Main highways between Bogota and Bucaramanga, and between Bogota and Ibague.
  • Highways between Manizales, Pereira, and Armenia and within the “coffee country” provinces of Caldas, Risaralda, and Quindío.
  • Highway 90 from Cartagena, through Barranquilla to Santa Marta.
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Colombia Map

Colombia
Republic of Colombia
Colombia Map