Colombia’s capital, Bogotá, is a giant metropolis sitting atop a mountain range. At 8,612 feet (2,625 meters), it is one of South America’s highest cities. This elevated location is responsible for cool temperatures, despite proximity to the equator. Colombia is a hub of culture with many universities, libraries and classy restaurants. Modern high-rises are juxtaposed with cobblestone streets and colonial Spanish churches.
Although the last century saw high crime and drug traffic in Colombia, Bogotá’s two-decade program to become a “safe city” has yielded success. Join numerous other international visitors to appreciate the popular travel destination.
Stroll to the quiet Candelaria historic town center to the National Museum of Colombia, the largest and oldest museum in the country. Browse more than 20,000 pieces of artwork and relics from various time periods, including ancient artifacts from 10,000 B.C.
Nearby, marvel at the strange, comedic and beautiful pieces in the Botero Museum. Peruse the collection of Fernando Botero’s distorted paintings and sculptures of people, animals and other objects, all plumped to obesity. Shop for gemstones in the Emerald District, just five blocks away.
Sample aguardiente, a sugarcane drink, and Colombia’s famous coffee. Join locals and visitors cycling and jogging on over 75 miles (120 kilometers) of streets designated car-free on Sundays for Ciclovia. Learn to do a salsa dance. Spend an afternoon at the Salitre Mágico amusement park. Cross through Simon Bolívar Park to reach José Celestino Botanical Gardens, featuring plants and flowers from every altitude and region of the country. Enjoy January’s Carnaval and other exciting festivals.
Ride the aerial tram or cable car to the top of Monserrate Mountain, which looms over the center of the city. Alternatively, you can climb the hundreds of steps. Explore the church and shrine at the mountain’s peak. Take a break at a café or restaurant at 10,340 feet (3,150 meters) above sea level. and capture stunning photos of the panoramic view of Bogotá as the sun drops below the horizon.