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Expat Exchange - 7 Tips for Living in Salento 2024
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7 Tips for Living in Salento

By Betsy Burlingame

Colombian Visa Services
Colombian Visa Services

Summary: Advice for people moving to Salento or thinking about moving there.

This is a must read if you're moving to Salento or thinking about moving there.

Salento, a charming town nestled in the heart of the country's coffee region, is a popular destination for expats and digital nomads. With its vibrant culture, stunning landscapes, and friendly locals, it's no wonder why so many people are drawn to this unique place. However, living in a foreign country can be a challenging experience, especially if you're not familiar with the local customs and lifestyle. Here are seven key tips to help you navigate life in Salento, Colombia.

1. Learn Spanish

While you can get by with English in some parts of Colombia, knowing Spanish will greatly enhance your experience in Salento. Not only will it make everyday tasks like shopping and dining out easier, but it will also allow you to connect with locals on a deeper level. Consider taking Spanish classes or using language learning apps to improve your skills.

2. Embrace the Local Culture

Colombians are known for their warm hospitality and vibrant culture. Make an effort to immerse yourself in the local lifestyle. Attend local festivals, try traditional foods, and learn about the country's history and traditions. This will not only enrich your experience but also help you feel more at home in Salento.

3. Explore the Coffee Region

Salento is located in the heart of Colombia's coffee region, making it a great base for exploring the surrounding coffee farms. Take a tour of a coffee farm to learn about the coffee-making process and sample some of the world's best coffee. Don't miss the opportunity to visit the Cocora Valley, a stunning natural park known for its towering wax palm trees.

4. Enjoy the Local Cuisine

Colombian cuisine is diverse and delicious, and Salento offers plenty of opportunities to sample local dishes. Try bandeja paisa, a hearty platter of meat, beans, and rice, or arepas, a type of cornbread that's a staple in Colombian cuisine. For a taste of the local coffee culture, visit Café Jesús Martín, a popular café that serves high-quality coffee and pastries. For a more upscale dining experience, head to Brunch, a restaurant known for its innovative fusion cuisine.

5. Find a Comfortable Place to Live

Salento offers a variety of housing options, from traditional houses to modern apartments. The town is small, so most places are within walking distance of the main square. However, some neighborhoods, like El Bosque and San Vicente, are quieter and offer more privacy. Take the time to explore different areas and find a place that suits your lifestyle and budget.

6. Stay Connected

As a digital nomad, staying connected is crucial. While internet service in Salento is generally reliable, it's a good idea to have a backup plan in case of outages. Consider getting a local SIM card for your phone, which will allow you to use mobile data when Wi-Fi isn't available. Also, make sure to have a reliable VPN to ensure your online activities are secure.

7. Get Involved in the Community

One of the best ways to feel at home in a new place is to get involved in the local community. Look for opportunities to volunteer or participate in community events. This will not only help you make new friends but also give you a deeper understanding of the local culture and way of life. Remember, the goal is to integrate, not just to live in a bubble.

Living in Salento, Colombia, as an expat or digital nomad can be a rewarding and enriching experience. By embracing the local culture, learning the language, and getting involved in the community, you can make the most of your time in this beautiful part of the world.

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We have over 10 years of experience helping foreigners obtain visas, invest, and do business in Colombia. Take the stress out of immigrating to Colombia by working with an experienced, bilingual immigration attorney.
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Click connect to have our partner contact you via e-mail and/or phone.

About the Author

Betsy Burlingame Betsy Burlingame is the Founder and President of Expat Exchange and is one of the Founders of Digital Nomad Exchange. She launched Expat Exchange in 1997 as her Master's thesis project at NYU. Prior to Expat Exchange, Betsy worked at AT&T in International and Mass Market Marketing. She graduated from Ohio Wesleyan University with a BA in International Business and German.

Some of Betsy's articles include 12 Best Places to Live in Portugal, 7 Best Places to Live in Panama and 12 Things to Know Before Moving to the Dominican Republic. Betsy loves to travel and spend time with her family. Connect with Betsy on LinkedIn.


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