Who is the World’s Best Salsa Dancer?

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Although I spent a week in Cali and moved onto Salento, I made plans to return for the World Festival of Salsa as it was one of the largest in the world with free workshops and music.

And while I don’t like the idea of going backwards, my hostelmate Helen reminded me that this was a once in a lifetime experience.

So I returned a few days prior and that night at Tin Tin Deo, the Thursday night salsa club everyone frequents, I knew I had made the right decision.

The club was packed and the energy was high with anticipation.

The Cali Couchsurfing crew were already talking about the Saturday afternoon youth competition that kicked off the festival.

Cali World Salsa Festival

I was amazed at the level of precision by these dancers. The festival isn’t something they take lightly, but the culmination of hours, weeks and years of practicing.

There were definite crowd favorites and Caleños rose to their feet, screaming for these dancers like they were at a rock concert. 

After watching hours of couples dancing, there was a short break and salsa groups competed.

I was in awe of the level of dance, but what was the most shocking was afterwards seeing the performers walk around the grounds as I realized they were young teenagers dancing like they had been performing salsa for decades.

As media I was fortunate because, as with all performers, they were more than happy to pose for photos and hear praise.

Join the Conversation

  1. Christy - Ordinary Traveler says:

    Wow! Great photo of the 2 girls at the top! I love experiencing festivals in the countries that I visit. I have a little story I’ll be writing about a rodeo I went to in Mexico. It was shocking to say the least. :0

  2. I have always been a fan of watching salsa dancers rip it up on the dance floor. I unfortunately lack the rhythm necessary to look good doing it.
    Looks like you are still enjoying yourself, keep it up!

  3. I’m not a fan of salsa, but I love watching those salsa dance festivals. You see all the energy and effort they put to make such an impressive performance.

  4. What great fun & pics!!! Sooo happy you broke your rule of going backwards. 😉

  5. ann wellwood says:

    Love the colourful costumes!Looked like a worthwhile thing to backtrack to.The pictures are beautiful!!

  6. Ryan Smith says:

    Those 2 girls scared the crap out of me. If I saw them shaking their butts in my direction I would probably run.

  7. Ah I love to Salsa dance. I didnt know these types of festivals existed. here in Houston we have an annual Salsa festival too but its for Hot Sauces…lol!!!

    Great Pics~

  8. Looks like a fun Salsa Festival, great pictures! Funny , my fiancee just asked me today if I want to learn how to dance salsa and then you post this up. 😛

  9. Salsa has so much positive energy! I used to have a collegue who would only listen to salsa. She was from Colombia, of course.

  10. great fotos! the footwork of the colombianos is incredible!

  11. Gorgeous photos! But who won?? Haha

    1. Ayngelina Author says:


      Patience grasshopper, you will find out soon enough 🙂

  12. Awesome photography! Their costumes are so bright!

  13. As a traveler and salsa lover, I really enjoyed your article and the pictures. Great makeup! :)) I hope to make it to Cali someday… 🙂

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