Earlier this year, Colombia announced plans to lead a project that would result in the creation of the world’s largest protected area. The ecological corridor across northern South America is an initiative to fight global climate change and to protect the region’s biodiversity. The reserve would cover approximately 135 million hectares (more than 520,000 square miles).

Nature reserve in Colombia.

Nature reserve in Colombia.

The protected area would span several South American countries with 62% of the reserve in Brazil, 34% in Colombia and 4% in Venezuela. Click here for more information on the proposed initiative.

Andean cock-of-the-rock in Colombia.

Andean cock-of-the-rock in Colombia.

If that news piques your interest in Colombia, here’s another reason to think about a trip there. The strength of the US dollar makes a trip to Colombia more affordable than in recent past. The dollar has gained 18% in value on the Colombian peso in the last year. Prices of international flights have fallen, too.

While many Americans still think of Colombia as the “murder capital” of the world, that image is outdated. The country is booming. Bogota and Medellin are becoming tech and cultural hubs, the beaches are beautiful, and it’s a world-class destination for nature enthusiasts.

A group of birders in Colombia.

A group of birders in Colombia.