More than 400 people had to flee their homes in Citadel Sevilla, Medellin – the home city of infamous cocaine drud lord Pablo Escobar.
People at the scene were “terrified” by the sizeable 6.0 magnitude quake, which is believed to have lasted around 30 seconds and was followed by an intense aftershock.
The local authority has initiated its Disaster Risk Management plan amid fears of landslides taking place in the rural region, which has been battered by heavy rains in recent days.
The quake, which took place aroun 8pm local time, was also felt in Bogota – 400km away.
Mayler Parra, who was near the epicentre in Mutatá, said: “The trucks on the roads were shaking, alarms of cars rang out, all the people in hotels took to the streets.”
Express.co.uk spoke to two tourists currently staying in nearby Sabaneta.
Tegan and Daniel, from New Zealand, said: “It was pretty scary! We are staying on the sixth floor in an apartment block and we shook for about a minute. It was a bit daunting not knowing what was going to happen. I guess a lot of people would have felt the same, the city is full of apartments!”
Other locals reported a 13 storey hotel building shaking ominously during the tremor.
Fears are growing for the surrounding population, especially considering a weaker 5.6 magnitude earthquake in 2008 killed 11 people in El Calvario.
The tremor originated 45 miles below the surface, according to geologists, and the region is located in a subduction zone, meaning earthquakes occur inland.
George Donnelly tweeted from Colombia to say he felt the earthquake and he claimed it went on for a long time