Girón, a tobacco centre 9 km southwest of Bucaramanga on the Río de Oro, is a little gem of a colonial town. Far from the bustle of industrial Bucaramanga, at weekends it is filled with
, many of whom come for Mass at its beautiful church. In 1963 Girón was declared a National Monument: the
buildings are well preserved and the town unspoilt by modernization. By the river are
courts and popular open-air restaurants with
bands. In the square at weekends, sweets and
(crushed ice delights) are sold, while children buy balloons and are wheeled about in miniature cars.