With Colombia being one of the most commonly mentioned countries on our tongues at the moment (we’ve no idea why…) we thought we’d research a few interesting facts about the South American country. Here’s the pick of the bunch:

Fact number 1:

The name ‘Colombia’ is derived from the famous Italian explorer Christopher Columbus. Which is often thought to be a big cause of the common misspelling ‘Columbia’.

Fact number 2:

Colombia is the world’s leading source of emeralds, with over 150 mines providing the high-quality gems which are distributed worldwide.

Fact number 3:

Colombia’s national sport is something called ‘Tejo’, a sport that consists of throwing a metal disc or puck at a clay board that holds targets which contain gunpowder and explode on impact!

Fact number 4:

Bogota, the capital of Colombia, has the world’s largest bicycle route, stretching over 300km!

Fact number 5:

According to 2013’s ‘Barometer of Happiness and Hope’ study, Colombia is the ‘Happiest Country in the World’!

Fact number 6:

It is mandatory for radio and TV stations in Colombia to play the national anthem at 6am and 6pm every day.

Fact number 7:

Colombia is the only country in South America that has a coastline on both the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea.

Fact number 8:

Colombia hosts the world’s largest theatre festival, the Iberoamericana, every year.

Fact number 9:

The national flag of Colombia was designed by a Venezuelan by the name of Francisco Miranda. The blue stripe represents the ocean which separates Colombia from Spain, whilst the red symbolizes their war for independence.

Fact number 10:

Be sure not to gift anyone lilies or marigolds as a present, these flowers are reserved strictly for funerals in Colombia and could be construed as an insult otherwise.   

Fact number 11:

Colombia hosts more than 10% of all flora and fauna species on earth. It's considered as one of only 17 ‘megadiverse’ countries in the world, being the second most biodiverse, beaten only by Brazil with over 56,000 different species.

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