Medellín: The cosmopolitan city you've never seen

Sometimes called the City of the Eternal Spring, Medellín is a cosmopolitan city you rarely discussed in positive circles across the United States. During the 1980s, Medellín was once known as the most dangerous city in the world. However, with an estimated 2017 population of 2.5 million residents, now it is the second largest city in Colombia and an international leader for implementing innovative concepts in sustainable urban development and public transportation. In addition, according to a recent survey of the global status of the Smart Cities by Indra Sistemas, it's been identified as one of the best cities to live, alongside Barcelona, Lisbon and Santiago de Chile. Here's a photo tour of a vibrant South American city you probably don't know much about.

Virtually every flower @ your market or florist originated in Colombia. Supermarkets chains, such as Walmart, Kroger, Meyer, Safeway, Whole Foods Market, Albertson’s and Costco, source most of their flowers from Colombia.

Sunset over Oviedo Mall seen from the pub across the street.

A model of a new multi-use building housing a hotel, condominiums, retail and office space.

While not wide, the raging torrent that is the Medellín River is called the Porce River along most of its course. However, there is no shortage of interesting bridges.

Parque Lleras, where old meets new, these buildings are typical of mature sections of the city.

Bikeways are well marked. Most are out of the road except for crossings, making this example in an older neighborhood rather rare.

Single family residences near the Santa Fe Mall.

San Diego Pan: Fresh baked breads and light pastries are a Colombian obsession. San Diego was one of the City’s first shopping mall originally built in the open town center style.

Parque Norte De Medellin: The trail system circles this lake in Parque Norte.

Santa Maria del Rosario School: Schools such as Santa Maria stress academics over sports to the extent that even a Colombian High School Diploma is considered equal to an associate degree by the U.S. State Department.

The El Poblado business district as viewed from the balcony of the Santa Fe Mall.

Filet mignon, roasted potatoes and house salad for about $10 dollars.

The clouds below provide some idea of the Andean heights.

Leaving Medellin is always hard.

Photographs and captions by Robert Mann