It’s Feria de Las Flores time!
I’ve been living in Medellin for almost 9 years now and I have not gotten tired of Feria de Flores. Granted that I’m not a parade going type of person. I’m not a fan of sitting in one place, in the sun, for hours. However, I have been to pretty much all the parades, and to many of the events.
First of all, if you need the official info on all government events, here it is. This is the printable PDF version.
Second, make sure to check out our first Medellin Podcast, which is about Feria de las Flores.
In this blog post, I’m going to go over some of my favorite events to go to, both free and paid…but mostly free.
1. 10th Festival de Sancochos – FREE
Sunday, July 28, 2019 – 10:00 am – 10:00 pm – Santa Elena
The Sancocho Festival in Santa Elena is a free event where you can eat many variations of the delicious stew (sancocho).
For those of you that don’t know what Sancocho is, it’s a hearty stew that is a typical dish in Colombia.
It consists of plantain, yuca (cassava), pieces of corn on the cob, potatoes, garlic, onion, cilantro, and either chicken, pork, or beef…sometimes all three. Accompanied by rice, a banana, and sometimes, salad.
Many of you know that I am a vegan, but before I was a vegan, Sancocho was one of my favorite things to eat, especially in cold weather or to nurse a hangover.
The Sancocho festival started as a friendly neighborhood competition in Santa Elena ten years ago. It has evolved into an all-day festival with cultural events and concerts, and it’s all free.
How to get up to Santa Elena?
You can take an Uber, taxi or a bus.
Buses and taxis leave from downtown at this address: Carrera 42, 50a-42. Here’s a map of the route. It’s pretty windy, so if you get motion sickness easily make sure to take a pill or take a barf bag.
2. Inauguración oficial de la Feria de las Flores – FREE
Friday, August 2, 2019 – 6:00 pm – 1:00 am – Carrera 70 and Calle 10
This is the Flower Festival’s opening event. It’s a free concert on the street and thousands of people attend. So if you don’t like large crowds, this event is not for you, lol.
I don’t mind large crowds and look forward to drinking and dancing in the street.
That being said, the event starts at 6 pm, but I advise you to get there around 4 pm to get a good spot.
This year there will be performances from Gilberto Santa Rosa, Mr. Black, Hebert Vargas, and El Tropicombo.
3. Plaza de Flores – FREE
*Friday, August 2, 2019 to Sunday, August 6, 2019 – 12:00 pm – 11:00 pm – Parque Norte (map here)
*Sunday, August 4, 2019 to Friday, August 9, 2019 – 12:00 pm – 11:00 pm – Aeroparque Juan Pablo II (map here)
*Wednesday, August 7, 2019 to Sunday, August 11, 2019 – 12:00 pm – 11:00 pm – Museo de Arte Moderno Medellin (MAMM – map here)
Parque Norte, Aeroparque Juan Pablo II, and Museo de Arte Moderno (MAMM) are parks with lots of space. During feria de flores they’re turned into places for family and friends.
This is one of my favorite things to do because I can go with friends: eat, drink, hang out, people watch, and then head somewhere else. As a single guy in Medellin, this is a great place to take a date.
There are activities such as the circus, carnival-type games, crafts, food, drinks, and music.
4. Festival de la Cerveza – FREE
*Saturday, August 3, 2019 – 11:00 am – 11:00 pm – Unicentro Mall
This is a beer festival. Entrance is free, but you’ll have to pay for the beers.
The micro-brew industry is growing in Medellin. I love going to beer festivals because I get to know about new beers, meet new people, and, well…get drunk.
This year’s Festival de Cerveza will be at the Unicetro Mall.
5. Superconcierto Feria de las Flores – PAID
Saturday, August 3, 2019 – 6:00 pm – 3:00 am – Stadium (map here)
This concert is called the Super Concert, and it is exactly that. Thousands of people pack the Medellin soccer stadium for a night.
This year there will be performances from Marc Anthony, Ozuna, Maluma, Becky G, Carlos Vives, and Yeison Jiménez.
I’ve been to two of these concerts and have had a BLAST both times. I recommend getting tickets on the floor, not general seating. In general seating, you are confined to one spot. So dancing is difficult and meeting new people is also difficult.
The floor seating is more expensive, but a much more fun experience. You are not confined to one spot, you can walk around and meet people, and ask them to dance.
6. Al Ritmo de la Bici – FREE
Saturday, August 3, 2019 – 3:00 pm – 8:00 pm – Parque de las Luces (map here)
If you’ve got a bike you can join the parade; however, you’ll have to fill out this form.
The competition requires you to dress up and dress your bike up for one of the following categories.
1 – Classic, Old or Vintage.
2 – Flower, Floats, and Arrangements.
3 – Famous People.
4 – Going to Work.
5 – Representing a participating institution.
6 – Join the parade. No prize for this category.
If you’re like me, you’ll just join the parade for free, and enjoy riding around the city in closed-off streets with a few hundred people. I always make new friends, have a few beers, and end up somewhere for dinner.
7. 20th Annual Pet Parade
Sunday, August 4th, 2019 – 8:00 am – 6:00 pm – Metro station: Estadio (map here)
You don’t need a pet in order to participate in this long walk. I’ve been to it twice, and have had fun meeting people and their dogs.
My favorite part of the route is the yellow one, where you’ll find the big dogs.
Also, the orange part of the route is cool too, you can meet some local celebrities and their pets.
Here’s the parade route:
8. Classic Car Parade (Desfile de Autos Clasicos) – PAID
Saturday, August 10, 2019 – 10:30 am – 1:00 pm – El Colombiano (map here)
The classic car parade is more fun for me than the flower parade. I love old cars and people get into it here. Meaning that you’ll see people in classic cars dressed up in that era’s clothing.
Buy Tickets Here
Classic Car Parade 2019 Parade Route:
There are several car categories:
- Old vehicles – 35 years old+
- Classic vehicles – 50 years old+
- Street rod vehicles – 35 years old+
- Hot rod vehicles – Cars that have been totally changed in regards to mechanics, suspension, and body.
- Vehicles produced, assembled or distributed in Colombia.
9. Party in Santa Elena
Saturday, August 10, 2019 – 2:00 pm – 3:00 am – Santa Elena (map here)
My FAVORITE thing to do is to go up to Santa Elena and party in that little town.
Santa Elena is the town where the flower arrangements (silletas) are put together. The whole town shuts down and people flood the streets. There’s food, music, beer, and aguardiente.
Many of the people that make the silletas allow you to walk on to their property and take a look. Some go even further and will have food and drinks for sale and/or music.
FYI – It’s cold up in Santa Elena so take a jacket.
Make Comments and Suggestions Below
I love to get insight from readers, feel free to leave comments and/or questions below.
About the writer – Andrew Macia
Hello, my name is Andrew Macia and the Medellin Buzz is my blog. I moved to Medellin in 2010 and fell in love with the city. I taught advanced level English for four years and then started a digital marketing company.
I love Colombia, and Medellin is my home. I like to write and I want to give back to the community. This is the best way I know how. I hope you enjoy my blog!
About the Medellin Buzz
I started the Medellin Buzz as a resource for my English as a foreign language students a few years ago. A site where they could read about their city in English, that wasn’t boring. It slowly turned into a personal blog and hub for information for people discovering Medellin. I check comments frequently, so feel free to leave your comment and/or questions below.
Only a seat in the stands is paid for car parade. There are places along the route for standing that are free.
But where is the best free spot? Medellin Guru says the long sections because people can spread out and not so many rows deep.
But then there is the issue of shade.
So got any suggestions at this late moment?
BTW if you have an extra ticket for the stands I’d be happy to buy it from you.