The Laguna del otún is a natural reservoir that is located in the department of Risaralda, in the area belonging to the Los Nevados National Park. The lake is approximately of 1.5 km² and a depth of about 70 meters. It is formed by the volcanic and glacial action fed mainly by the melting of the Santa Isabel Snowy glacier.
In the Laguna del otún was object of adoration by the old Quimbaya culture and now it is of vital importance since it feeds the Otún River, which supplies the city of Pereira.
¿What will you find 🏞👀?
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¿How to get 🛣🚌?
There are several ways to get to this beautiful lake; some are longer than others, such as the route that starts at the Cedral, passing through the Pastora, then the Jordan, and then reaches the Laguna del otún.
The route we will show in this post is arriving through Potosí. Since this sector does not reach public transport, days before we had hired a jeep to take us to the entrance of the Nevados National Park on the sidewalk of potosí in Caldas, you can reach:
From Santa Rosa (Risaralda): The Jeep takes on average 3 hours to reach Potosí. The trip to and from the same day costs around $ 350,000 COP for up to 8 people. It is what the drivers recommend for the poor condition of the road.
From Villa María (Calda): It is approximately 42km, the jeep will take around 3 hours to reach Potosí. The cost of the jeep to go and return on the same day is around $ 350,000 COP, for a maximum of 8 people; It is what drivers recommend for the poor condition of the road. The prices vary depending on the driver you hire, At the end of the document we will leave you the information of the companies that provide the transport service.
These options are recommended if you go with more than 4 people.
If you are traveling alone or with a few people we advise you to go with a travel agency, you can find the agency information at the end.
If you plan to go with a tour operator, make sure it is authorized by Los Nevados National Park. In the attached information we will leave some phone numbers of these operators.
In winter the road can be in a very bad state, jeeps in some cases can only enter until the sidewalk potosí, it would take approximately 2 hours walking to reach the entrance of the Nevados National Park.
If you arrived too late to start the road to Laguna del Otún or want to sleep one night to get your body used to that height, near the entrance of the Nevados National Park you will find a site that provides service: Lodging 🛌 $ 12,000 COP, breakfast ☕️ $ 8,000 COP and lunch 🍛$ 12,000 COP.
Only these services are provided with reservation, it is advisable to do it 3 days in advance. Phone number: 3166397610(The people who work there only speak Spanish).
In this place you can also find parking🅿️: motorcycle $ 5,000 COP per day and car 🚙 $ 10,000 COP.
The path 🚶🏼🏔
⚠️ Remember that pets 🚫🐶 and fishing are forbidden.
To enter the park we had to pay the following:
- Entrance to the park 🎟: over 5 years old and under 25 years old $ 8,500 COP, over 25 years old $ 16,000 COP and foreign $ 45,000 COP.
- Medical and rescue insurance ⛑: it is mandatory to enter any national park in the country, the value of this is $ 3,500 COP per day for Colombians, foreign around $5,000 COP, so if you go on a camping plan you will have to buy it for the number of days you will be there , you can buy it online Click here.
From the entrance to the Nevados National Park to the Asomadera or Potosí viewpoint, it is approximately 3 hours walking.
Photo from the asomadera to the rangers house (where you can find the campsite) .
From the asomadera to the ranger’s house which is the place where the ⛺️ camping area is located, it will take 2 hours along the road. The road runs next to the Laguna del Otun and becomes progressively narrower and more like a dirt tracks. If you do not know the road well it will be very easy for you to get lost! :(. At this point on the road we had to go through some small lake and the beautiful sulfur ⛰.
Recommendation: this section will have to go through stones and some rocks which it is advisable to go before night falls. After a pleasant walk watching these beautiful landscapes, we finally arrived at the ranger’s house, where we could camp. Laguna del Otún
The next day we got up early to know a place that many people had recommended to us the “Laguna del Silencio”, on the way we could observe the beautiful landscapes of frailejones framed with the view at the bottom of the paramillo of Santa Rosa 🗻. After 2 hours we finally reach our final destination.
After enjoying for a long time the tranquility of this beautiful lake 🧘♂️, we return to the Camping area of Laguna del Otún where we stay the rest of the day to rest a little. The next day we woke up early to organize all our luggage and return home again :).
¿How to return🚌🏡?
For our return we take the same path we came by, avoid taking shortcuts since some of these shortcuts damage areas where frailejones are found. We must bear in mind that in the Laguna Otún there is no cell phone signal, so you must coordinate the location and time of the meeting point with the jeep driver in advance so that he is waiting for you.