70km (43 miles) W of Villavicencio
From 1989 to 2009, one of Colombia’s most spectacular natural wonders, Caño Cristales, was closed to tourism. For the most part, everyone forgot that there was a magical river that turned five different colors in the wilds of Los Llanos, the flood-prone grassland east of the Andes in Parque Nacional Natural Sierra de La Macarena. Even when tourists began to return, they had trouble figuring out how to get there. It required extensive planning to get to the town of Villavicencio and then find a charter flight in a DC-3 to the town of La Macarena. Now, you can just take a flight from Bogotá in the morning, and you’re exploring this surreal piece of the planet by the afternoon. Welcome to the new Colombia.