A complete and up-to-date hiking guide to the Cerro de las Tres Cruces Medellín (Hill of Three Crosses). Discover the best mountain viewpoint in the city!
Looking for the best viewpoint hike in Medellín Colombia? Welcome to this guide to the Cerro de las Tres Cruces hike (Hill of Three Crosses).
This hill is located in the southeast of the city and offers great views of the unique Medellín cityscape and the surrounding mountains. At the top, you’ll also find a great outdoor workout area that is easily the most scenic gym in the City of Eternal Spring.
In this blog post, I will cover everything you need to know about hiking the Cerro de las Tres Cruces trail, including how to get to the trailhead and what to expect on the hike and at the top.
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- About the Hill of Three Crosses Hike (Cerro de las Tres Cruces)
- Where is the Cerro de las Tes Cruces located?
- Hiking the Cerro de las Tes Cruces Trail in Medellín
- The Top of Cerro de las Tes Cruces Medellín – The Three Crosses
- The Descent
- Where to Stay in Medellín – Quick Accommodation Guide
- More Colombia Travel Inspiration
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About the Hill of Three Crosses Hike (Cerro de las Tres Cruces)
The Hill of Three Crosses is a quick but fairly steep hike that takes just under an hour to complete. The trail starts at the bottom of the hill and winds its way up through a mostly exposed grassy area. At the top, there is a small plaza with three crosses that mark the summit, as well as a large outdoor gym workout area.
There are also some great views of Medellín from here, and I think they're the best you'll find in the city!
This viewpoint hike isn't very well known amongst travelers and backpackers. However, you'll find that this is a local favorite, and the trail can even get quite crowded on weekends.
Cerro de Las Tres Cruces makes up one of the seven tutelary hills of Medellín, the others include:
- Cerro Pan de Azúcar
- Cerro El Picacho
- Cerro El Salvador
- Cerro Nutibara
- Cerro la Asomader
- Cerro El Volador
Where is the Cerro de las Tes Cruces located?
Looking at the map, you'll see the Cerro de las Tres Cruces located to the west of the city near the corregimiento of Alta Vista.
If you're coming here by metro, then the closest to the trailhead is the Los Alpes station near the Los Molinos mall.
Apparently, there are a few different trailheads leading to the hill summit. However, in this blog post, I'll outline the most popular route, and the trail that I took to get to the top.
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How to get to the Trailhead
- Hiking Distance: 3.8 km return (2.4 mi)
- Duration: 1 - 2 hours return
- Elevation: 320 meters (1050 feet) total elevation gain |
Cerro de las Tres Cruces height - 1920 meters (6300 feet)
- Difficulty: Easy to follow but steep
By far, the easiest way to get around in Medellín is to use Uber. This is cheap, easy, and super convenient.
The official starting point is: Calle 8 #88A.
However, when I was researching how to get here (in English), I found that the address provided on other blogs and resources seemed a bit tricky to navigate to.
Luckily, there is now a pin on Google Maps named "Hike tres cruces". This is an accurate pin and will also show up on Uber.
This point is approximately 6 kilometers (3.7 mi) from the popular tourist hub of Poblado. However, since you'll need to cross to the Western side of the Medellín River, this can take some time in traffic.
Expect to pay roughly 8000 - 14000 peso (COP) to get here, depending on where you are coming from.
Apparently not all drivers know about the trailhead location So, if you'd prefer to take a local taxi instead of an Uber, you can give them the address mentioned above or say you're going to "parque el cerro las tres cruces."
Once you arrive at the marker below, you can begin the ascent almost immediately from the road.
Hiking the Cerro de las Tes Cruces Trail in Medellín
The trail is not too difficult but can be regarded as fairly steep for most. Depending on your fitness level, expect roughly 30-45 minutes to get to the summit.
We managed in just under half an hour at a decent pace. This included a few stops along the way to take some photos of the incredible cityscape views below us.
The trail maintains the same fairly steep gradient throughout the hike, following an unsealed dirt track cutting through the long, green grass. While there are some sections where you can catch some shade under some trees, most of the trail is exposed to the sun and wind.
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The First Outdoor Gym Area
At the half way point, you'll find a large, newly renovated workout area that is a popular spot for locals to get some outdoor exercise. Furthermore, on weekends, you'll find some stalls selling freshly squeezed juices and snacks.
This large, cleared section is also flat and offers uninterrupted views of the city below.
We decided to skip this workout area and continued straight for the summit.
Related: Pueblito Paisa in Medellín
The Top of Cerro de las Tes Cruces Medellín - The Three Crosses
The last section of the Hill of Three Crosses hike in Medellín is arguably the steepest. This section wraps around the face of the hill before popping out at a cleared section at the top.
This area has recently been renovated, and features undercover areas, wooden viewing platforms, beautiful gardens, and a large outdoor gym.The great part about this is that it's completely free to the public!
We spent some time admiring the view and finished the walk off with a quick workout before the late afternoon storm rolled in.
Unfortunately, while I was hoping to fly my drone from the top, the area is within DJI's No Fly Zone, so I couldn't take off. This is due to the close proximity to the city airport.
Related: Guide to Guatapé Rock - La Piedra del Peñol
The walk back down was much faster, but with the rain setting in, the track got very slippery. I'd imagine after a few days of heavy rain, this track would be a nightmare to descend! Either way, we made it to the bottom in about twenty minutes and ordered another Uber to get back to our apartment in the city's south.
Overall, Cerro de las Tres Cruces is a great hike that offers beautiful views of Medellín. If you're looking to get off the beaten path, hike with the locals, and see the city from a unique viewpoint, make sure to head to include the Cerro de las Tres Cruses hike in your list of things to do in Medellín.
Where to Stay in Medellín - Quick Accommodation Guide
The most popular area to stay in Medellín is Poblado. This is the main tourist district and features plenty of great cafes, nightclubs, restaurants, and activities. However, if you're the type who would prefer to detour from the gringo trail, check out Laureles (my favorite), Patio Bonito, or Belén.
- 23 Hotel Medellin - This jungle-themed hotel is one of the most epic places to stay in the city and is located in a central location on Poblado.
- Sites Hotel - Another amazing Poblado hotel with a rooftop pool offering incredible views over the city.
- Rango Hostel Boutique - Probably the best backpacker hostel in Medellín. Features an epic rooftop bar and plenty of co-work and common spaces to hang out.
More Colombia Travel Inspiration
I hope you've enjoyed this quick guide to hiking the Cerro de las Tres Cruces trail in Medellín, Colombia.
If you enjoyed this guide, make sure to check out some of my other posts for more inspiration for your travels in Colombia.