Sightseeing is limited in Pereira, but it’s still a pleasant city that’s part of the UNESCO World Heritage listed Coffee Cultural Landscape of Colombia. In the city center, the main plaza is a bustling wide open space called Plaza de Bolívar.
A very interesting monument to Simón Bolívar sits on one end. It’s called Bolívar Desnudo and features a naked Bolívar riding a horse. It was erected in 1963 by Rodrigo Arenas Betancourt and Guillermo González Zuleta.
On the other end of the plaza is the Catedral de Nuestra Señora de la Pobreza. It was built in 1875. The most impressive feature of the cathedral is the exposed wooden beams of the ceiling.
Parque El Lago is a small park west of Plaza de Bolívar. It has a fountain and pond in the center and is filled with street vendors. It’s a great place for people watching but you should take care late at night. Iglesia El Claret sits at one end of Parque El Lago.
Parque de la Libertad is a short walk east of Plaza de Bolívar. Until recently, it was off limits. It’s cleaned up a lot and safety is much better, however, there’s no reason to visit.
Plaza Victoria is another plaza in Pereira. The Ciudad Victoria Mall and Centro Cultural Lucy Tejada, housing Pereira’s library, sit on the plaza. There are very nice views from the higher floors of both buildings.
One of the most beautiful churches in Pereira is Iglesia de Nuestra Señora del Carmen (San José). It’s a neo-Gothic church built in 1950. It looks like something out of France and is worth visiting for its stained glass windows. It’s located on Circunvalar.
Art lovers will enjoy the Museo de Arte de Pereira. This modern art museum surprised me. I’m not one who usually enjoys this type of museum, but the temporary exhibits on display were attention grabbing and I actually understood the message behind the art (for once). Admission is COP$3,000 per person. The museum is closed Mondays.