The city of Pereira is pretty nice but there’s not much to see or do. It’s known mostly for its great nightlife and as a base for nearby natural attractions.
Getting to Pereira can be done by plane or bus. The airport, Matecaña International Airport, is located just a 10-15 minute taxi ride from the city center. It shouldn’t cost more than COP$15,000. International destinations are currently limited, but the runway is being expanded to accommodate bigger planes for bigger routes. There are frequent domestic flights to cities like Bogotá and Medellín.
The bus terminal is located near the city center. Taxi rides to and from the city center should cost no more than COP$5,000. Several bus companies run routes to major cities and smaller, regional towns and villages. There is frequent service to Bogotá, Medellín, Armenia, and Cali.
Getting around town is easy on foot and via taxi. A taxi to the entertainment districts of Circunvalar and the Zona Rosa from the city center should only cost about COP$6,000. It is generally safe to walk around Pereira, but locals told me if I find myself going downhill in any direction from the city center, stop and turn around.
Nightlife in Pereira is great. The Circunvalar district has several clubs and bars. We tried La Cantaleta but ended up leaving because they required us to buy a bottle if we wanted to enter. There are several other places up and down the strip to visit, including Candida, Lucky, and Bar Celona (which also serves decent food).
Outside of town is Paradise, a huge nightclub. Doors open around 8pm. We got there at 10pm and were told the line would be about a two hour wait. It’s best to get there as early as possible.
For shopping, the nicest place is Parque Arboleda at Circunvalar. Ciudad Victoria has a few decent stores as well and is a bit cheaper. Both have movie theaters, restaurants, and entertainment. There’s also Unicentro and Pereira Plaza.