Metro de Medellín is the only rail-based mass transportation service in Colombia, and it is environmentally friendly because it is powered by electricity from renewable resources rather than from fossil fuels. It has two lines running North to South and Centre to West across the city. The lines cover 27 stations in total, halting at key tourist sites such as the Plaza de Botero and the Botanical Gardens. There are also two metro cable lines attached to the metro lines, and there is no additional cost to transfer to them (with exception of the metro cable to Parque Arvi from Santo Domingo).
There are different ways to use the Metro:
Single passes for a one way trip: A single metro ride costs 1810 COP (about $1 USD). These can be purchased at any metro station, and are the easiest way for a tourist to use the system.
‘integrated’ ticket: If you need to take a metro and a bus in the same trip you can ask for one, this will be cheaper than buying tickets separately. Note that only certain bus lines accept an integrated ticket, you may inquire at the station before purchasing one.
To avoid queuing at the ticket booth, you can get a ‘Civica’ card at one of the service desks (Puntos de Atención al Cliente – PAC) located in the stations Niquía, San Javier, Itagüí, or San Antonio on weekdays between 6:30 and 20:30, or Saturdays between 9:30 and 16:30. Bring along your passport or driver's license from any country. The ‘Civica’ card is free and you will receive it immediately with your name and ID number on it.
The card offers many benefits: avoid long queues and metro trips cost 5 to 10% less per trip. You can refill the card at the ticket counter and in machines located outside every station that also allow a quick check of your balance before you enter the turnstile. You can also use the Civica car for the metro cable, giving you exclusive access to certain transfer points. For more information visit the Civica site.
Monday to Saturday: 4:30 – 23:00
Sunday: 5:00 – 23:00, Línea K: 8:30 – 23:00, Línea J: 9:00 – 22:00
It is a cable propelled transit system, connected to the Metro, composed of 3 lines (J, K, and L). It was originally constructed to provide public transportation to communities from the elevated and steep mountainsides of the city that proved inaccessible to the Metro.
You can take the MetroCable to visit tourist sites such as Biblioteca España (Spanish Library) or simply to get an incredible view of the city. It allows visitors to see Medellín from another perspective: an aerial view of some impoverished areas and the way of living of a big part of the city’s population. The evolution of these neighbourhoods during the past decades can be observed and tourists can understand why Medellín was chosen as Innovative City of the Year 2003.
In Medellín taxis are identified by their yellow body, the name of the company to which they are affiliated together with the mobile number 'número del móvil' located in a visible place and the colour of the license plate: a white background and black characters.
Every vehicle is equipped with a taxi metre ('taximetro') to determine the price of the service according to government regulations.
The fees that apply currently to taxi services are:
Start* ('Arranque' or 'banderazo'): COP 3000
Fee every 78 metres: COP 87
Minimum fee** ('carrera mínima'): COP 5000
Fee every 60 seconds of waiting: COP 150
Price by hour: COP 27000
From/To the International Airport José María Córdova: COP 65000
*There’s always an initial fee of 3000 on the taxi metre marking the start of a ride.
**The minimum fee is different from the start fee. If your route was short costing less than COP 5000 you have to pay the minimum fee irrespective of the amount indicated on the metre.
Taxis offer ‘radio taxi’, which means it will come to your location after you have called the company they are registered with. We recommend you this service, you can do it from your hotel room or ask the hotel reception to do this for you as well. With these taxis, you’ll be given a special code to give to your driver to verify that he/she is indeed from the company you’ve called. You can also take taxis on the street, but for safety’s sake, when you can, use a radio taxi. Most restaurants, hotels, museums, etc. will call a taxi for you, so don’t hesitate to ask!
You can also take a taxi at official places where a taxi will be waiting for you under safe conditions. Such places are called 'centros de acopio' (gathering centres) and you can find them all in this map.
Remember to keep cash in local currency when you are going to take a taxi. Taxis in Colombia do not offer card payment facilities.
Buses in Medellín are owned by private companies and each bus has a specific route in the city that can be identified by a square-like poster in the front window. Prices range between COP 1800 and 2500 depending on the bus type. The current fee is always posted in the front window. Most fees must be paid in cash, preferably in coins or with small bills except for some integrated buses that work with Metro cards.
Buses in Medellín do not have fixed stops and you can wave your hand at any place of the route to step in or out of the bus. Therefore, if you are not familiar with the route make sure you ask someone to tell you when to get off if you’re unsure. If you feel you’re too unfamiliar with the city to take chances we suggest using the Metro, MetroCable or MetroPlus systems or hail a taxi.