How To Visit The Cave Of Splendor, Jardin, Colombia

The cave of Splendor (Cueva del Esplendor) is a unique place near Jardin that is a must do thing while you are visiting the puebla. The cave’s highlight is one of the best waterfalls I have ever seen, and I have visited many beautiful waterfalls in places like Bali and Sri Lanka. The cave of splendor is located up in the mountains above Jardin and there are a few ways to visit it while I’ll explain in this article.

Jardin
Jardin streets

First of all, you need to know that the cave of Splendor is located on private property, so you cannot get to this sight entirely on your own. 

Second, it is not going to be an easy, nice walk. You will have to go up the hill for a while, then go down a very steep hill with a wet and slippery trail. So you should prepare suitable clothes and proper shoes. 

To visit the cave of Splendor you have two choices: 

  1. Get to the entrance location of the property on your own and then pay for an owner/guide to take you to the cave.
  2. Book a tour from the beginning and follow the tour guide all the way from Jardin to the cave and back.

Visit The Cave Of Splendor On Your Own

If you are choosing the first option, than you need to know this:

You can take a tuktuk from Jardin to the furthest point they can take you (approximately half the way) for about 25 000 – 30 000 COP and then walk on your own to the house of the cave’s owner. Depending on your pace it will take you between one and two hours. The hill is not extremely steep, so it should not be that hard for a fit person. Or you can climb on your own without a tuktuk from the start, which will take you around 3 hours. 

on the way to the cave of Splendor
Hiking trail

At the house you can book a guide for 20 000 COP, get some refreshments, use the bathroom and then have the guide take you to the cave. After visiting this site, I can assure you that having a guide is necessary. I am not saying that you will get lost or injure yourself, but there is a possibility, especially because there are no signs that tell you where to go, plus you will need to cross the river (can be very slippery). 

house of the cave's owner

The hike down to the cave will take around 20 minutes. On the way back, the trail, of course, will take a bit longer. The time you spend in the cave depends on you. If you bring your swimsuit, you can swim near the waterfall, but be warned, the water is freezing. 

On the way down to the cave of Splendor
On the way down to the cave of Splendor

Visit The Cave Of Splendor With A Tour Group 

For those who want to make their life easier, you can book a tour. In  Jardin village there is a tour agency that offers trips to the cave of Splendor – “Agencia Cueva del Esplendor”. They take you up the mountain in a Jeep almost all the way to the owner’s house. You are left just to walk 15 minutes or so. 

Cave of Splendor

At the house the tour group is served some traditional snacks and sweet tea to give you some energy. After that, you go down to the cave. 

On the way back before getting back to the Jeep, you are served cold juice and cake. Overall the trip is quite easy, but you still need to wear proper shoes and clothes. 

At the beginning of the tour you will be provided with water and some dry sweet snacks. 

Cave of Splendor

The meeting location of the group is at the agency’s office, however I was picked up not far from my accommodation (Villa Adiela), since it was on the way to the cave. 

The price of the tour is just 60 000 COP, which is almost the same if you take a tuktuk and pay 20 000 COP at the top anyway. 

Cave of Splendor

The excursion lasted from 9 AM until 1:30 PM, during which you have a nice rest at the top of the mountain in the house of the cave’s owner with snacks and drinks, and have a lot of time to explore the cave. 

Gear

Shoes: The best shoes are proper trekking boots; They will protect you from sliding, mud, and water. If you do not have boots then wear sneakers with rubber lug soles. These shoes will be good enough, although it is possible to get wet sometimes. And the worst will be just running sneakers simply because you will have higher chances to fall, especially on the way down to the cave.

Clothes: To hike the mountain it is better to wear thin comfortable pants, high socks, and a long sleeve thin shirt. This way you won’t get sunburned. However, the weather in Jardin usually is good, it is sunny and hot, so a T-shirt and shorts would be just fine as long as you have sunscreen with you.

Sunscreen: if you are going with shorts and T-shirt, put the sunscreen on at home on your open body parts, so you won’t burn your skin. 

Sunglasses and Hat

Food and Water: if you are getting to the cave on your own, you need: chocolate bars (fast energy), nuts, dry fruits, sandwiches. 1,5 liter of water per person. For those who book a tour at “Agencia Cueva del Esplendor” you will be provided with snacks and 0,75l of water. If you book your tour in a different agency, please find out about food and water before going on a hike. 

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