A Dane who found His Place in a New Realm: Pereira

Jorn is from Denmark but has lived in Colombia since 2015 now and makes his home in Pereira (Risaralda) where he runs his own hotel and restaurant, El Lugar Nordico. Here’s his expat story…

About Jorn

Jorn’s spouse is Colombian and he says he’s 80% fluent in Spanish. He describes his experience living as challenging, and one of the reasons he cites is the city’s lack of efficiency. He describes the cost of living here as reasonable and the locals have treated him fairly, though he feels discriminated against all the time in commercial transactions (gringo pricing). He adds that he feels safe in Pereira and likes the weather above all.

Jorn’s Tips

  • Talk to someone who has been here a while before planning tours.
  • Try to visit the authentic places and avoid plastic traps where everyone knows each other and you end up feeding entire family networks!
  • Never flash money around
  • If you do not speak Spanish well enough, be sure to have a local guide or driver who can help you.

Jorn’s Must See List:

  • Filandia (pueblo in nearby Quindío)
  • Apia, a pueblo also in Risaralda
  • Café Don Manolo, a coffee plantation in Pereira that offers tours

El Lugar Nordico’s Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/ellugarhotel/

Pereira Factoids

  • Average elevation: 1,285 m (4216 ft)
  • Average daily maximum and minimum temperature: 79 F (26 C) / 63 F (17 C). Comparable to Medellín.
  • Average humidity: 91% (uncomfortable)
  • Rain: very rainy, similar to many cities in the Colombian Andes
  • Year founded: 1863
  • Population: About 709,322 (metro, 2018)
  • Geography: Alpine valley (Otún and Cauca river valleys)
  • Cost of living for most foreigners: Very Low. Lower than bigger Colombian cities, much lower than anywhere in the USA.
  • Example (Aug 2022) rental apartment: estrato 6, 124 m2, 2 bed, 2 bath, Pinares: 1,500,000 COP/mth not including condo fees (source: Metro Cuadrado)

Getting there: There are frequent flights from Bogotá and Medellín to Pereira. There are twice daily non-stop flights from Miami to Pereira via American Airlines.

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