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Ipiales is a city close to the Ecuadorian border in Colombia. It is a obligatory stop over on your way to Ecuador. There is nothing much to see except the spectacular Iglesia de las Lajas (See Get Out).

Get in[edit]

The bus station is a bit out of town, but there are collectivos to the centre.

There are frequent buses to Pasto, Popayan and further north. Collectivos will bring you to Rumichaca for the border if you go to Ecuador. The border crossing is quite easy and straightforward. The Colombian DAS-office is on one site of the bridge and the Ecuadorian office is at walking distance on the other side. From here there are collectivos to Tulcan. The collectivos to Tulcan are located to the left as you cross the yellow bridge from Colombia, and slightly before the office you go to get stamped into Ecuador. After you get your passport stamped for Ecuador, as you leave the building, the white collectivos are to you right, across the road (o.75 cents US July 2016). Don't sell your dollars on the border, the exchange rate is bad.

Colectivos from Ipiales to the border leave from the bus terminal and cost $1700COP pp. They leave you at the Colombian immigration control. After the formalities in both police controls, a minivan in the Ecuadorian side will take you to Tulcán for $0.75c (Colombian pesos also accepted, $2.000COP as of Sept 2015). You can choose to get off at the city center or at the bus terminal.

You can also get a collectivo from the center to the border. (1700 COP July 2016). On Calle 14, on the corner of Carrera 7. Its on the second block south from the south west corner of Plaza la Pola. They leave when full. And will drop you off at the Colombian DAS Office.

The Bus company Bolivariano now has a new international route departing Ipiales each Monday (Lunas) at 11:00 A.M. for Lima, Peru. On the top floor of the main building of the Ipiales Bus Terminal (July 2016). Price of a one way ticket is 400,000COP (July 2016), and takes 48 hours. Will not sell a ticket to Quito only.

Get around[edit]

See[edit][add listing]

The colourful Saturday Market at the "Plaza Los Mártires", 10 minutes walk from the town center.

  • Plaza La Pola (Inglesia de la Felina). The church is on the North East corner of the Plaza, the corner of Carrera 5 and Calle 13.

Do[edit][add listing]

Buy[edit][add listing]

Eat[edit][add listing]

  • La Paisanita, Calle 8 5-21 (Northeast corner of Plaza de la Independencia), (57) (2) 7732003. Free wifi from the plaza. Network is 'unimos' and password is 'unimos2012'. Good place to chill while you wait 6 hours for your nightbus to Cali. Full of Colombian families. Delicious chicharones.

Veggie option:

  • Pan de Vida: Calle 16 #7-69. For $5000 a soup, main dish, drink and dessert.

Drink[edit][add listing]

Wonderful Jugo bar just off the main Plaza to the north west -- try the Uvillo Completo (COP$3.000, and worth every penny) or the Alfalfa (COP$1.300). The "Completos" are made with home made honey, and the owners are friendly.

Sleep[edit][add listing]

  • Hotel Belmonte, Carrera 4a No. 12-111 (almost 700 meters (straight line distance) from the Bus Terminal. Its a 10 minute walk.). a family run hotel with clean rooms with television. A two minute walk from Plaza La Pola (Inglesia de la Felina). COP$ 18.000 single, COP$ 28.000 double.

Get out[edit]

  • Sanctuario de las Lajas, a cathedral spectacularly built on a bridge over the Guaitara river. Its construction lasted from 1916 to 1949 and was financed by local churchgoers. To get there take a collectivo (Sept 2015: COP$2200, 15 minutes) or a taxi (COP$9000). Collectivos leave from the bus terminal (white cars) and from 2 blocks east of the Cathedral. Definitely worth a visit, including the museum (COP$1500), but watch for "Gringo Pricing" at the food stands overlooking the church, ask first. There are also four hotels in the commercial centre by the cathedral, a possible alternative if you turn up to Ipiales to find the town booked out! Hotel Mary was charging $15.000COP for a single and $25.000COP for a private double with bathroom and shower as of Sept 2015.
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