Pacific Region of Colombia
The Pacific Region of Colombia is a long and narrow plane that extends more than 1300 km between Panama to the north and Ecuador to the south. The plane lies between the Pacific Ocean to the east and the Cordillera Occidental, part of the Andes, to the west. The terrain is predominantly flat with the exception of the Serranía del Baudó, a mountain range in the North of the region. The Pacific Region of Colombia has beautiful scenery.
The coastline offers hundreds of kilometers of empty and deserted cinnamon-colored sandy beaches, rocky coves (especially to the north), large river estuaries and mangrove forests.
Dense and impenetrable equatorial jungles reach the coast of the Pacific Ocean.
Numerous short but deep rivers from the Andes, flow through the Pacific Region of Colombia. They bringing large quantities of sediments and silt and accumulated them in the ocean creating extensive coastal shallows.
The Pacific Region of Colombia is one of the rainiest places on the planet. Here, the average amount of rainfall may exceed even 13,000 mm per year! This is almost 22 times the average rainfall in some of the rainiest European cities such as London.
The combination of huge amount of precipitation, high temperatures of over 30°C and high humidity of more than 85% makes the weather quite uncomfortable for most people.
However, wildlife thrives here very well, and the variety of species of plants and animals is among the greatest in the world.
Most of the territory of the Pacific Region of Colombia is very wild, untouched and sparsely populated.
There are a number of national parks and protected areas – Malpelo Island, Los Katios, Isla Gorgona, Uramba Bahia Malaga, Ensenada de Utria, Sanquianga and others.
Also, some of the most famous cities in the country, such as the cultural center of Popayan, the world’s salsa capital – Cali, the charming coastal towns of El Valle and Bahia Solano, the Pacific port of Buenaventura and others, are located in the region.
The largest cities are Cali (3.4 million people), Buenaventura (400 000 people) and Popayan (266 000 people).
The Pacific Region of Colombia is in a difficult economic situation. With nearly ½ of the national export of Colombia, the city of Buenaventura is the most important port of the country.
Despite of its economic significance, this city and the entire region are often called “the backyard of Colombia”.
The reason for this bad reputation is the combination of poverty, unemployment, high levels of crime and numerous social problems in Buenaventura.
On the other hand the cultural center Popayan is much different. It can serve as an example because of its infrastructure and great tourist significance.