Coconucos Volcanic Range

Coconúcos volcanic range

The Coconucos Sierra is a volcanic system located in the Purace Natural Park, between the Cauca and Huila departments. The volcanic system is formed by 12 volcanoes higher than 4.000 m.a.s.l. The most famous is the Purace Volcano, 4,650 m.a.s.l., which is an active volcano and receives a lot of visitors for 1-day trips, especially from Popayan. However, south from Purace, it is easy to be amazed by the volcanic system surrounding it, by the moonlike landscape, the moraines, paramos, and hidden lagoons.

To arrive at the Coconucos System, it is necessary to pass by the Purace Volcano, either by climbing its summit or traversing along the moraine. Once you enter the south region of the cordillera, you can find the other volcanoes, with the view of the highest one: the Pan de Azucar Volcano, 4.910 m.a.s.l. The other volcanoes are not geologically active. This is the list of the volcanoes system: Piocoyó 4,330 m.a.s.l, Calambás 4,350 m.a.s.l, Curiquinga 4,440 m.a.s.l, Paletará 4,200 m.a.s.l, Quintín 4,320 m.a.s.l , Chacas Gemelos 4,400 m.a.s.l, Machángara, Chagartón, Iscuandá, Púcara y Pan de Azúcar

To hike along the volcanic chain you must be in great physical condition and have some experience in high mountain areas. There are no glaciers, so it is not required to have technical knowledge about mountaineering. However, it is necessary to be in shape, gained with previous training, and to have advanced knowledge in equipment and gear, as well as high mountain survival techniques.

High-speed winds are very common in the area, exceeding 60km/h these can easily drag a person or a tent. This is why it is so important the technical knowledge. According to the Coconuco indigenous community who takes care and guides in the volcanoes, It is very important that visitors´ spirit and mind are pure and neat, full of humility, and it is good to ask permission to the Volcano Spirits, so they will receive human beings without difficulties.

This is the land of the Andes Condor, a magical land where silence is impregnated by the wind song and its freezing blades.

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Travelers comments:

Hola Iván: Aquí van algunas fotos de nuestro viaje, que registran los momentos tan especiales que tuvimos. Tal como te comenté todo salió perfecto y sin contratiempos. La ayuda y colaboración de Jacobo y Rafael, 5 estrellas. Una experiencia inolvidable, sencillamente maravillosa. Un fuerte abrazo y esperamos poder organizar algún otro viaje pronto. Saludos de todos.

Luis Eduardo Cevelier

Viaje: Junio 2017

Iván: Muchas gracias por la expedición a la Serranía de los Coconucos. Fue ESPECTACULAR. Sin Colombia Oculta no la habría podido hacer.

Andrés Guhl

Viaje: Enero de 2017

Pan de Azúcar volcano summit, with 4,910 msnm it is the highest mountain at the Serranía de los Coconucos. For the Coconucos indigenous community it is the olders granfather of the range


Day 0.

7:00 pm Travel to Popayán from Bogotá. (12 hours approx by land, 1 hour by plane)

Day 1.

Arrival to Popayán.


Journey to Pisimbalá Refugee in the Purace Natural Park

Entrance to the park. Introduction to the community.

Accommodation in the Refugee.


Acclimatization hike to the Bedon´s Fall.


Resting time

Foto: Luis E. Cavelier

Day 2

4:00 Breakfast at the Refugee

Start expedition to the Coconucos Serrania

Climbing to the Purace Volcano Crater (4.650 masl)

Hiking across the crater side to reach the Coconucos Volcanic chain

Lunch picnic style

Arrival to the Paletara base camp at 4.200 masl

Campsite organization- tents assembling

Dinner (cooked for each person)

Resting time

Day 3


Hiking journey to the Laguna Negra campsite at 4300 masl (just if the weather allows it, otherwise we stay at the same campsite)

Lunch picnic style

Campsite organization- tents assembling

Dinner (cooked for each person)

Resting time

Fotos: Luis E. Cavelier

Day 4


Climbing to the summit of Pan de Azucar Volcano (4.900 masl), the highest volcano of the Coconucos System (this summit will be climb only if weather and other mountain security conditions are good)

Lunch picnic style

Return to Campsite

Dinner (cooked for each person)

Resting time

Foto: Luis E. Cavelier

Day 5


Put off the base camp

Return hike to Pisimbala´s refugee

Lunch picnic style

Dinner at the Refugee

Resting time

Day 6


Return to Popayan

Return to Bogota

End of services

Indígena de la comunidad de los Coconucos pastoreando en su territorio de pajonal de páramo. Al fondo el Volcán Puracé, con algunas lenguas nevadas y con fumarola.

Cost per person in shared plans

7 al 13 de Enero 2019

Minimum 7 travelers, otherwise the costs will be distributed among the interested persons, or the plan will be canceled.

It includes

Public bus tickets Bogota- Popayan- Bogota (it can be changed to plane tickets, by an additional cost)

Local guide for 7 days

Breakfast on days 1, 2 and 6

Lunch day 1

Dinner days 1 and 5

Transportation both ways Popayan- Pisimbala´s refugee.

Entrance fees to the Natural Park

2 accommodation nights at the Refugee (Day 1 and 5)

2 expedition leader guides, high mountain, and first aid specialists, from Bogota (If the expedition has less than 4 persons, it would be just 1 leader guide)

Mountain gear carriers to take the backpacks from Refugee to Base Camp 1 and to take down the backpacks on Day 5. The service includes just 1 carrier per traveler, carrying 15 kg maximum.

Note: Colombia Oculta can not guarantee to reach any summit if weather conditions are extreme or become a risk to expeditionaries´ security. Colombia Oculta reserves the right to stop the expedition if there is any risk for the integrity or the life of any expeditionary, or if the guides decide to take this decision.

It is important to understand that meals included in the plan are cooked by persons from the communities, and the menu is based on typical products of the region. If possible, it is avoided to use other regions' products. If you want you can ask for the menu details, and in case of needing or wishing specific products from another region, we call to your comprehension and ask you to take it with you in your luggage.

It does not include

Camping gas stove

Gas for the stoves

Meals for cooking in the mountain: 3 breakfast, 3 lunches, and 3 dinners. You must take them with you.

Cooking process at the mountain

High mountain clothing




Not stipulated expenses

Plane tickets Bogota- Popayan- Bogota

Additional carrier.

Expedition leaders

In Coconucos we will always be guided by local guides, who have the best experience. Also, Colombia Oculta will send expedition leaders, supporting logistics along the entire expedition.

Esta imágen representa una pequeña parte de la cadena volcánica de los Coconucos. En el centro de la imagen se alcanza a ver un cráter perfecto; es del volcán Paletará. El cerro de la izquierda es el volcán Quintín. El Cerro de la derecha es el volcán Machángara. El cerro negro que se ve a la derecha es el Cerro Quilla; no es un volcán pero su formación rocosa sí es de origen volcánico.

Private expeditions from Popayan

Cost per person

2 personas: $,000

Campamento en el cráter del volcán Paletará. Ubicado sobre los 4200 msnm.

Lagunilla del Paletará. Al fondo el Volcán Pan de Azúcar 4910 msnm, al sur de la Serranía. Y a la derecha de la imágen el Cerro Quilla.

Líderes de la expedición

En la zona vamos a andar con guías locales mayores con experiencia. Quienes son los que realmente conocen la Serranía de los Coconucos.

También vamos a estar acompañados por estos líderes de viaje quienes apoyarán toda la logística durante toda la expedición.

Jacobo Ulloa

Guía profesional de Alta Montaña y paramédico.


To have a good attitude, be uncomplicated, and be patient if suddenly we have to change schedules, we will do our best to make your trip a great experience.

The hiking activities will be physically demanding, so we ask you to be in good shape. It is demanded to have high mountain experience. The journey starts at 3200 masl and the highest summit will be reached at 4900 masl. The difficulty is high and the hiking duration can vary between 3 to 12 hours, depending on the day.

High mountain level 7/10

It is required to take with you proper mountain clothing, as well as just the necessary stuff, to avoid over-weighted backpacks.

✓Impermeable jacket and pants

✓ Hat

✓Trekking poles

✓ Hiking boots

✓ UV filter sunglasses

✓ Headlamp

✓ Sunscreen for body and lips

✓ Water bottle

✓ Personal knife

✓ Photo camera

✓ A set of clothes to travel

✓ A set of clothes to sleep

✓ A 90 lt backpack to pack all the clothing inside plastic bags or dry bags

✓ 3 seasons tent for high mountain

✓ Sleeping pad

✓ Sleeping bag, at least -3C

✓ Camping stove

✓ Gas for stove

✓ Personal medicines (if required)

✓ Sanitizer items

Mountain food: (Try to take with you food easy to process, like pasta, soup (to prepare), nuts, seeds, etc)

✓ 3 breakfast

✓ 4 lunches

✓ 3 dinners

There is a cellphone signal at the Pisimbala Refugee

Mural realizado por el señor Edgar Taimal, mayor del cabildo indígena Coconucos. Representa la zona del Parque Nacional Natural Puracé, donde se encuentra su resguardo, abarcado por la Cadena Volcánica de los Coconucos; entre otros, como la fauna representativa: danta, oso anteojos, cóndor de los andes, venado. También los bosques andinos, páramos, cascadas y volcanes.

¿Cómo vestirse en la Montaña?

Ver Aquí

(Una guía completa y sencilla, tips útiles)

En la tienda de nuestros amigos aliados 14 ochomiles pueden encontrar todos estos materiales para su aventura. Hay muy buenas posibilidades si descargas la App de fidelización.

En últimas si no se cuenta para invertir en esta ropa que también sirve para vestir en lo urbano se puede llevar sudaderas, (NUNCA JEANS) buenas chaquetas y ponchos impermeables que usan los niños de los que venden en Cafam. En las montañas colombianas vemos como los campesinos hacen sus actividades outdoors con sus botas pantaneras y su ruana cuatro puntas.

La cadena volcánica de los Coconucos vista desde el Volcán Machángara. Al fondo y al sur el volcán Puracé, le sigue el volcán Quintín.

No show and cancellation politics

To cancel a trip it must be done 5 days before the departure date and it will be returned 90%of the booking deposit, plus the additional deductions and penalties established by providers when the services are not used. The money return will be done within 30 calendar days after the claim is sent. If cancelation is not made at least 5 days before the trip, no money will be returned.

In case the traveler does not show up to the trip the day it starts, there is not money return.

In case the traveler does not fulfill with the agreed touristic services, for any reason, the Agency can claim the payment of 20% of the total cost or established price, or it can withhold the deposited money made previously by the client.

In case of fortuitous events (extreme weather, natural disasters, landslides, transportation problems) that makes to cancel a trip, Colombia Oculta will return 90% of the deposited money.

See terms and conditions of Colombia Oculta S.A.S

Booking and payment process

Contact us to start the booking process at

Send us information about destination, dates, number of travelers and expectations.

Once confirmed the booking details, please select a payment method

    1. Deposit or transference to bank account: Deposit the amount at Banco de Bogotá. Cuenta corriente # 083347807 - Colombia Oculta SAS. Send the deposit form confirmation to with all the passengers information (full names, id numbers, nationality). If you make an international transference we will send you the bank details via email. The transference will charge an extra 5% of the deposited amount.
      1. 2. Deposit to Bancolombia, savings account #3360002647 - Colombia Oculta SAS. Send the deposit form confirmation to with all the passengers information (full names, id numbers, nationality). If you make an international transference we will send you the bank details via email. The transference will charge an extra 5% of the deposited amount.
      2. 3. Pay via Credit Card: We will generate a PayU link for you to deposit. It will arrive to your e-mail with the total amount previously arrange with the Agency, including an extra 8% fee charged by the transference company.

Excelente alojamiento en el Refugio de Pisimbalá, administrado por la comunidad del Resguardo Indígena del Puracé.

Las cabañas Pisimbalá del Parque Nacional Natural Puracé, están dotadas con buenas camas, camas, cobijas, ducha con agua caliente y chimenea.

El refugio Pisimbalá cuenta con tres cabañas, cada una con capacidad de 12 personas. Es administrada por la comunidad indígena.

Travesía de aproximación y de entrada a la Serranía de los Coconucos. Bordeando el volcán Puracé, sobre terreno de morrena por encima de los 4400 msnm. Es una caminata muy fuerte y exigente, ya que hay que cargar con todo el equipo de montaña al hombro. Se recomienda llevar bastones de trekking y guantes pegados rompevientos.

El Valle de las Momias. En el centro de la Serranía de los Coconucos. Es un rastro o lengua de origen volcánico proveniente de la última erupción que hizo el volcán Pan de Azúcar hace miles de años. En el paisaje quedaron centenarios de figuras fantasmagóritas. "Son abuelos y gentes, espíritus que ahí habitan".

Colombia Oculta

Nature Travel Agency


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Vereda Güita, Suesca, Cundinamarca.

Carrera 29 No. 74-19, Bogotá.

Cel / WhatsApp +57 311 2397809

Tel. +57 1 3010213

skype: colombia.oculta

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Sábados: 9:00am - 12:00m

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