Colombian

When we talk of famous Colombians, singer Shakira and actress Sofía Vergara are undoubtedly among the first names that come to our minds. This is not at all surprising given that Columbians are well known for their love for dance, music and entertainment, supported by their diverse tradition in the arts. Ethnically diverse, Columbia has a rich cultural heritage as it was originally inhabited by indigenous peoples including the Muisca, Quimbaya, and Tairona. The influence of European culture is also evident as the nation was once under the colonial rule of Spain. Even after gaining independence in the mid-19th century, Colombia faced a century of war, violence and political chaos and was able to gain relative political stability only in the recent decades.

This ranking is based on an algorithm that combines various factors, including the votes of our users and search trends on the internet.

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 1 
Shakira
(Singer-songwriter)

Shakira
67
Listed In: Dancers
Birthdate: February 2, 1977
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Barranquilla, Colombia

Grammy award winning Colombian pop singer, Shakira is best known for hits like Whenever, Wherever and Hips Don't Lie. One of the most successful Latin American recording artists, she is also one of the world's best-selling music artists. Her first hit album was Pies Descalzos after which she entered the English music market with her big hit album, Laundry Service.

 2 
Gabriel Garcia Marquez
(Nobel Prize Winner in Literature)

Gabriel Garcia Marquez
20
Listed In: Writers
Birthdate: March 6, 1927
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Aracataca, Colombia
Died: April 17, 2014

Nobel Prize-winning Colombian author Gabriel Garcia Marquez, also known as “Gabo,” is remembered as one of the most prominent figures of the magic realism literary style. His novels One Hundred Years of Solitude and Love in the Time of Cholera have achieved cult status. He previously worked as a journalist.

 3 
Radamel Falcao
(Football player)

Radamel Falcao
22
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: February 10, 1986
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Santa Marta, Colombia
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 4 
Sofia Vergara
(Actress)

Sofia Vergara
30
Birthdate: July 10, 1972
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Barranquilla, Colombia

Sofia Vergara is a Colombian-American actress, model, and TV producer. She is one of the highest-paid actresses in American TV. She rose to fame in the late 1990s as a TV host. She began gaining popularity as an actress in the 2000s and appeared in many TV shows and films. She is the recipient of numerous awards, including an NAACP Image Award.

 5 
Pablo Escobar
(Colombian Drug Lord)

Pablo Escobar
107
Listed In: Criminals
Birthdate: December 1, 1949
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Rionegro
Died: December 2, 1993

A notorious Colombian drug lord, Pablo Escobar was the founder and leader of the infamous Medellín Cartel. His drug cartel monopolized the cocaine trade into the United States and he became one of the wealthiest criminals ever in history. Dubbed "The King of Cocaine", he left behind a controversial legacy upon his death at the age of 44.

 6 
James Rodríguez
(Football player)

James Rodríguez
16
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: July 12, 1991
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Cúcuta, Colombia

James Rodríguez is a versatile football player adept at playing as a central midfielder, playmaker, and winger. At the initial stages of his career, he was counted among the best young international players. He made a major impact during the 2014 FIFA World Cup where he won the Golden Boot for scoring the most number of goals.

 7 
Sebastián Marroquín
(Son of Pablo Escobar)

Sebastián Marroquín
22
Listed In: Miscellaneous
Birthdate: February 24, 1977
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Medellín, Colombia
Sebastián Marroquín is the son of Colombian drug lord Pablo Escobar. He and his family fled to Mozambique after Pablo’s death, and then to Argentina, where he dropped “Escobar” from his name. He owns an organic clothing line and has written a book and contributed to a documentary about Pablo.
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 8 
Juan Pablo Montoya
(Racecar driver)

Juan Pablo Montoya
8
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: September 20, 1975
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Bogotá, Colombia

 9 
Karol G
(Singer)

Karol G
17
Listed In: Singers
Birthdate: February 14, 1991
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Medellín, Colombia
Karol G is a Colombian singer-songwriter. Well-known for being one of the few women to have dominated the reggaeton scene over the last few years, Karol G is revered in places where reggaeton is popular. She has several prestigious awards under her belt, such as a Latin Grammy Award. She has also received several nominations for Billboard Latin Music Awards.

 10 
J Balvin
(Singer)

J Balvin
17
Listed In: Singers
Birthdate: May 7, 1985
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Medellín, Colombia

J Balvin is a Colombian singer whose genres include reggaeton, hip hop, and Latin pop. Known as the Prince of Reggaeton, Balvin is one of the highest-selling Latin music artists in the world. He was presented with the Global Icon Award for spreading Latin music worldwide. In 2020, he was named in Time magazine's list of 100 Most Influential People.

 11 
Omayra Sánchez
(Victim of Nevado del Ruiz Volcano)

Omayra Sánchez
12
Listed In: Miscellaneous
Birthdate: August 29, 1972
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Armero
Died: November 16, 1985

Omayra Sánchez was a Colombian girl who died at age 13. After the Nevado del Ruiz volcano erupted in 1985, a massive lahar demolished her home and Sánchez was trapped in the water beneath the debris of her home. She died after struggling for 60 hours, and has remained a prominent figure in popular culture; she is remembered through music.

 12 
Carlos Valderrama
(Footballer)

Carlos Valderrama
5
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: September 2, 1961
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Santa Marta, Colombia
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 13 
Kali Uchis
(Singer)

Kali Uchis
13
Listed In: Singers
Birthdate: July 17, 1994
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Alexandria, Virginia, United States

 14 
Juan Cuadrado
(Football player)

Juan Cuadrado
1
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: May 26, 1988
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Necoclí, Colombia

 15 

Carlos Valdes
7
Birthdate: April 20, 1989
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Cali, Colombia

Carlos Valdes is a Colombian-American actor, dancer, and singer. Valdes is best known for playing Cisco Ramon / Vibe in the popular American superhero TV series, The Flash. He portrays the role in other Arrowverse-related projects as well. A multi-talented personality, Valdes is also an accomplished instrumentalist and songwriter; he plays the piano, guitar, ukulele, percussion, and bass.

 16 

Virginia Vallejo
9
Birthdate: August 26, 1949
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Cartago, Valle del Cauca

Virginia Vallejo is a Colombian journalist and author. After Vallejo claimed that many Colombian politicians and presidents were benefiting from the leading cocaine cartels, she was granted asylum in the USA in order to help the DEA and the Justice Department in cases pertaining to the Colombian drug cartels. Her book, Loving Pablo, Hating Escobar, was made into a film.

 17 
Jackson Martínez
(Association football player)

Jackson Martínez
1
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: October 3, 1986
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Quibdó

 18 
David Ospina
(Football - Goalkeeper Colombia)

David Ospina
3
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: August 31, 1988
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Medellin, Colombia

 19 
Griselda Blanco
(Drug Lord)

Griselda Blanco
33
Listed In: Criminals
Birthdate: February 15, 1943
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Cartagena, Colombia
Died: September 3, 2012
Griselda Blanco, also known as La Madrina and the Black Widow, was the first billionaire female drug lord. As part of the Medellin Cartel, she smuggled cocaine from Colombia into Miami, New York, and Southern California. She spent 15 years in jail and was shot dead by an unidentified motorcyclist.

 20 

Isabella Gomez
7
Listed In: Fashion
Birthdate: February 9, 1998
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Medellin

Colombia-born American actor Isabella Gomez is best known as the lesbian character Elena Alvarez from the sitcom One Day at a Time. Being an only child of her parents, she mostly grew up watching TV shows and later plunged into acting. She has also appeared in Matador and Modern Family.

 21 
Maluma
(Singer-songwriter)

Maluma
10
Listed In: Singers
Birthdate: January 28, 1994
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Medellín, Colombia

Maluma is a Colombian singer, actor, and songwriter. After developing an interest in music early in his life, Maluma started recording songs at age 16. He then went on to collaborate with many successful artists and is currently among the best-selling Latin music artists, with sales of more than 26 million records worldwide.

 22 

Sebastián Yatra
3
Listed In: Singers
Birthdate: October 15, 1994
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Medellin

Colombian pop sensation Sebastián Yatra soared to fame with singled such as Traicionera and Robarte un Beso. Yatra was a promising soccer player in school. He was in the news for his relationship with Argentine singer Tini Stoessel, and their subsequent break-up announcement on Twitter broke their fans’ hearts.

 23 
Juan Manuel Santos
(President of Colombia)

Juan Manuel Santos
5
Listed In: Activists
Birthdate: August 10, 1951
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Bogotá

Juan Manuel Santos is a Colombian politician who served as the 32nd president of Colombia. He is credited with co-founding the Social Party of National Unity, which he led to prominence. For his efforts to put an end to Colombia's more than 50-year-long civil war, Santos was honored with the 2016 Nobel Peace Prize.

 24 
Carmen Villalobos
(Actress, Model)

Carmen Villalobos
1
Listed In: Fashion
Birthdate: July 13, 1983
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Barranquilla, Colombia

Carmen Villalobos is a Colombian actress best known for her role in the telenovela Sin senos no hay paraíso, for which she won a Your World Award. She started acting as a teenager and initially appeared in small roles in TV shows. As her career progressed, she was able to bag more substantial roles in both TV shows and films.

 25 
Juanes
(Musician)

Juanes
2
Listed In: Singers
Birthdate: August 9, 1972
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Carolina del Príncipe, Colombia

 26 
Fernando Botero
(Painter, Sculptor, Artist)

Fernando Botero
2
Birthdate: April 19, 1932
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Medellín, Colombia

 27 
Zulay Henao
(Actress)

Zulay Henao
7
Birthdate: March 22, 1979
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Medellín

Colombian-born actor Zulay Henao made headlines for her relationship with Entourage actor Kevin Connolly, after an Instagram post in 2021 declared they were expecting a child. She had plunged into acting after serving in the U.S. Army for 3 years and later gained fame with series such as The Oath.

 28 
Carlos Bacca
(Football player - Striker)

Carlos Bacca
6
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: September 8, 1986
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Puerto Colombia, Colombia

 29 
Carlos Lehder
(Drug Lord)

Carlos Lehder
18
Listed In: Criminals
Birthdate: September 7, 1949
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Armenia, Colombia

German-Colombian drug kingpin Carlos Lehder, co-founder of the Medellín Cartel, which smuggled cocaine into the U.S., formed the Muerte a Secuestradores, to fight against the kidnappings of his cartel members. He escaped from the kidnappers but spent a 33-year sentence in the U.S., following which he was released.

 30 
Diana Turbay
(Journalist)

Diana Turbay
3
Birthdate: March 9, 1950
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Bogota
Died: January 25, 1991

 31 
Iván Duque
(President of Colombia)

Iván Duque
5
Listed In: Leaders
Birthdate: August 1, 1976
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Bogotá, Colombia

 32 

Juan Pablo Raba
3
Birthdate: January 14, 1977
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Bogotá, Colombia

Juan Pablo Raba is a Colombian actor best known for his portrayal of Gustavo Gaviria in the American crime drama TV series, Narcos. Over the years, he has established himself in the American TV industry. Apart from being an actor, Raba takes an active part in the campaigns organized by several animal and human rights organizations.

 33 
Ximena Duque
(Actress)

Ximena Duque
4
Birthdate: January 30, 1985
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Cali, Colombia
Colombian-born actor Ximena Duque began her career with the reality show Protagonistas de Novela and then the telenovela Soñar no cuesta nada. The mother of three has also won several Premios Tu Mundo awards. She was in the news when she contracted COVID-19 during her third pregnancy. 

 34 
René Higuita
(Football Goalkeeper)

René Higuita
3
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: August 27, 1966
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Medellín, Colombia

 35 
Andrés Escobar
(Association football player)

Andrés Escobar
7
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: March 13, 1967
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Medellín
Died: July 2, 1994

 36 
Carlos Vives
(Singer)

Carlos Vives
0
Listed In: Singers
Birthdate: August 7, 1961
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Santa Marta, Departamento del Magdalena, Colombia

 37 
Paula Garces
(Actress)

Paula Garces
4
Birthdate: March 20, 1974
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Medellín, Colombia

Catalina Sandino Moreno
4
Birthdate: April 19, 1981
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Bogota, Colombia

 39 
Juan Fernando Quintero
(Association football player)

Juan Fernando Quintero
1
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: January 18, 1993
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Barranquilla

 40 
Luis Muriel
(Association football player)

Luis Muriel
1
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: April 16, 1991
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Santo Tomás

 41 
Red Velvet
(Professional wrestler)

Red Velvet
5
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: June 3, 1992
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Miami, Florida, United States

 42 
Nairo Quintana
(Sport cyclist who won the 2010 Tour de l'Avenir and finished second in the 2013 Tour de France)

Nairo Quintana
2
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: February 4, 1990
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Cómbita, Colombia

 43 

Danna García
1
Listed In: Singers
Birthdate: February 2, 1978
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Guadalajara

 44 
Nina García
(Fashion Journalist)

Nina García
2
Birthdate: May 3, 1965
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Barranquilla

Nina García is a Colombian-American fashion journalist. She is the current editor-in-chief of Elle and has been a judge on the Bravo/Lifetime reality TV program Project Runway. She has a degree in fashion merchandising from the Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT) and has worked with the prominent fashion designer Marc Jacobs. She is the author of four books. 

 45 

Samuel E. Wright
6
Birthdate: November 20, 1946
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Camden, South Carolina, United States

Two-time Tony-nominated actor Samuel E. Wright is best known for his performances in The Lion King and The Tap Dance Kid. Fans also know him as the voice of Sebastian in The Little Mermaid, and his track Under the Sea, from the movie, won an Academy Award.

 46 
Jon Gries
(Actor)

Jon Gries
3
Birthdate: June 17, 1957
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Glendale, California, USA

 47 
Gio Urshela
(Baseball third baseman)

Gio Urshela
2
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: October 11, 1991
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Cartagena, Colombia

 48 
Faustino Asprilla
(Association football player)

Faustino Asprilla
2
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: November 10, 1969
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Tuluá

 49 

Cristina Umaña
2
Birthdate: December 24, 1974
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Ibagué, Colombia

 50 
Cristián Zapata
(Association football player)

Cristián Zapata
1
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: September 30, 1986
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Padilla, Cauca
Hard working and resilient, Columbians have emerged from their difficult past to become one of the most vibrant peoples in the world. While the likes of Shakira have taken the entertainment world by storm, others like artist Miguel Gómez, actor John Leguizamo, and businessman Fuad Ricardo Char Abdala have carved a niche for themselves in their respective fields. This section provides you information about the life and works of famous Colombians.