Best of Bogota – See it All in One Day
After years of internal strife, Colombia is as soon as again peaceful, flourishing and safe. Tourism is playing a substantial function in Colombia’s recovery; while other South American countries saw their visitor numbers decrease in 2009, the number of visitors to Colombia climbed up by seven percent.
Bogota, the capital city and the country’s economic and cultural center, offers magnificent opportunities for visitors. It has more than two lots museums, hundreds of parks, a wealth of colonial architecture, and some of the hottest night life in South America. If you have 2 weeks to spend in Bogota, you’ll find something new to see and do each day.
But exactly what if you’ve only got a day? Noted below are the “must-sees,” Bogota’s very best destinations. All are clustered within and near La Candelaria, the old colonial heart of the city. There’s more great news, too: La Candelaria is simply a short, affordable taxi flight from Bogota’s El Dorado Airport.
Cerro de Monserrate First stop: Monserrate. This Roman Catholic Sanctuary, situated 2,000 feet above Bogota, is accessed by means of either a cog rail or cable television automobile. From this mountaintop the vast panorama of Bogota spreads out prior to you. It’s an incredible view, however Monserrate has its own appeals, consisting of a superb church, incredible gardens, and lots of shops where you can anticipate regional crafts.
Bolivar Plaza This vast space is the heart of Colombia. It is surrounded by the Catedral Primada (the nation’s “first cathedral”), the Colombian Home and Senate, and the Supreme Court. Just one block away is Casa de Narino, house of the Colombian President. The plaza is constantly aswirl with activity; you’ll discover chains of school children making their method among the structures, picketing (and tranquil) protestors, travelers, federal government workers and the dapperly-dressed elite. From here it’s an enjoyable walk to the other must-sees.
Museum of Colonial Art Found in an amazing colonial mansion, this museum houses hundreds of pieces from the time of the conquest and the early settlement of Colombia.
Gabriel Garcia Marquez Cultural Center Colombians are justly pleased with their Nobel Prize-winning author, whose works are commemorated throughout the world. This new facility offers extensive information on the author, whose novels include 100 Years of Solitude and Love in the Time of Cholera. Visit for more information about the author, and to have a cup of good Colombian coffee in the open air coffee shop.
Botero Museum Fernando Botero is Colombia’s best understood artist, well-known for his depictions in paint and sculpture of “the fat ones.” The Botero Museum houses the artist’s own collection of art work, consisting of a thunder-jowled Mona Lisa. The museum also includes works by Picasso, Monet, Renoir and Matisse.
Museum of Gold This incredible museum is the home of more than 30,000 pieces of pre-Columbian artwork, including the well-known raft of Guatavita, source of the El Dorado legend. The Gold Museum is found on one of downtown Bogota’s busiest plazas, the website of a casual market for Colombia’s famous emeralds (and for its equally popular phonies!).
Colombia is still a deal. Just keep in mind: when you get hungry, prevent the American-style restaurants and rather choose one of the local favorites. A McDonald’s hamburger, for example, chooses US$ 7, and cannot measure up to the suspicious standards of its American origins. La Candelaria’s Restaurante Masiz, on the other hand, serves a four-course Colombian meal with veggies and fresh-squeezed fruit juice for $3.
The coffee is excellent too – naturally. Oma and Juan Valdez are the huge chains (they are the Starbucks of Colombia), however try a locally-owned shop. At Cafe Negro the service is as enjoyable as the coffee is abundant.