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Bogota, the capital of Colombia is ready to welcome you – and can barely remind us its older self! Having been transformed from a city of bad reputation - Gabriel García Márquez picked Bogota as the location of his book “News of a Kidnapping” – to a cosmopolitan metropolis, Bogota is now a very popular travel destination with more and more travellers searching for cheap air tickets to Bogota annually. Visitors in Bogota have the opportunity to enjoy unique architecture consisting of old colonial charm mixed with the latest architectural trends, world class museums and do a great deal of fascinating sightseeing. Above all, Bogota offers a special energy, stemming from the city’s alternative, bohemian heart and Latin American spirit; Bogota’s also full of youth, with students being a large part of the city’s population, guaranteeing for top nightlife choices. Find cheap hotels in Bogota, book your accommodation and plan your trip to the Colombian capital as soon as possible!
Bogota is not what everybody might think it is. Once considered a place to avoid, Bogota has now exited this kind of black lists and has risen as a shiny, cosmopolitan city and a top travel destination.
Bogota is the safest city in Latin America!
Planning a trip to Colombia? Start from Bogota and give it a little time; Bogota does not give away its charm at first sight. But it won’t be too long until the city’s energy captivates you.
In Bogota you’ll also find some of South America’s most notable museums; be sure to check at least some of them out, at your spare time between exploring the fairy-tale historic district and having fun with the locals!
Bogota’s international museum (Aeropuerto Internacional El Dorado) is located 15 kilometres west of the city centre and can be reached by bus.
Getting around Bogota
You can get around Bogota using the city’s bus network. Apart from the common buses, you can also catch a Transmilenio bus, with its own road lane. Fares start at 1.100 COP and minimum taxi fare costs 3.500 COP.
Your experience in Bogota begins at the Plaza de Bolívar, the city’s central square, meeting point and landmark.
The square was named after Simón Bolívar, Colombia’s national liberator, whose statue decorates the centre of the square.
North of the square, there’s Bogota’s historic centre, known as La Candelaria. This is the place where the city of Bogota was first founded, now a paved district, full of beautiful colonial buildings, mansions, churches, museums, restaurants and cafes. As a matter of fact, it’s in La Candelaria that you’ll come across most of Bogota’s sights and points of interest!
- The legendary Colón Theatre (Teatro Colón) was built in 1895 by Italan architect Pietro Cantini and is Bogota’s National Theatre. It’s divided into five different levels and, with a capacity of 900, it’s the seat of Bogota’s philharmonic orchestra, frequently hosting plays, concerts, musical performances and operas.
- The Gold Museum (Museo del Oro) was recently renovated and is now one of South America’s most fascinating museums. Extending over three floors, it exhibits more than 55,000 items made out of gold, belonging to the pre-Columbian indigenous populations of Colombia.
- The Botero Museum is not to be missed, especially from those who love art. The museum is dedicated to Fernando Botero, Colombia’s greatest artist and painter – and one of the most renowned ones in the world.
Botero’s style is recognisable from miles away; his human and animal figures are depicted big, overweight and exaggerated, always reflecting a greater political or social symbolism.
Botero himself donated to the Colombian state a collection of 150 of his works, now being exhibited at the Botero Museum, alongside masterpieces by Picasso, Renoir and Matisse.
As you make your way through the streets of the city, you’ll soon come to realise that churches are everywhere! Indeed, the centre of Bogota is full of churches, most of which are heavily decorated and could not go unnoticed.
Colombia’s Primada Cathedral (Catedral Primada de Colombia) would be your first religious stop in Bogota, built upon the location where Bogota’s very first church was built in 1539.
The cathedral is famous for two reasons, one being its elegant murals dating back to the 17th and 18th centuries. The other reason lies with the founder of Bogota, Jiménez de Quesada, whose tomb is housed in the cathedral’s crypt.
However, Bogota’s oldest church is not the cathedral, but the San Francisco Church (Iglesia de San Francisco). The church’s construction is estimated somewhere around 1557 and 1621 and is particularly popular for its golden nave – quite impressive!
To enter Bogota, you need to have a passport, valid up until 6 months after your travel dates. Greek citizens do not need a Visa, for a maximum stay of 90 days.
When to Go
Bogota has a generally pleasant Mediterranean climate, characterised by warm and hot summers, followed by cool and wet winters. It’s safe to say, weather wise, you can visit Bogota all year round.