Bogota is one of the southern hemisphere’s principal centres for writers, architects, intellectuals and artists and each one of the professions manifests itself throughout the city. Home to the national museum and the national cathedral, these are just two of the multitude of magnificent museums and churches located throughout the city. As well as impressive interiors, you will also see a fascinating mixture of colonial architecture and modernistic structures which give the city a unique appearance and one worthy of checking out.
Generally speaking, Bogota can be divided into four large zones; the central zone between carreras 1 and 14 and calles 5 and 34. This area includes the colonial neighbourhood of La Candelaria and is where the majority of government offices, museums, churches and other buildings of historical, artistic and cultural interest are situated. The northern zone is the modern commercial sector and is where the majority of cultural and activities take place. The southern zone is mainly industrial working class and the western zone is where you will find the city’s various parks and sports centers as will as the Eldorado Airport.
One of the sights just outside the metropolitan area is the shrine of Monserrate. This is located on a nearby mountain and offers breathtaking views of the city. Also in the locality, you will see the unique underground Salt Cathedral of Zipaquira and the world famous Tequendama Falls which plunge through a canyon in the Andean jungle.
22 - 79 Carrera 7, Bogota, Colombia
This offers a change from your everyday cinema as it’s a typical Bogotan art cinema. While you won’t see any Hollywood blockbusters, you will get to broaden your mind and you will also have a really good time.
Carrera 6, Calle 6, Bogota, Colombia
This museum is the most important of its kind in the world. Housing a unique collection of precolumbian gold which includes objects from the Calima, Tayrona, Sinu, Muisca, Tolima and Tumaco cultures, you will be amazed at what is on display. Among the objects are exquisite masks, collars, bracelets, pectorals and jars. The Golden Room alone has more than 8.000 gold pieces on display and the total collection contains over 33,000 artefacts. It is closed all day Monday.
Carrera 8, Calle 9, Bogota, Colombia
This church is regarded as the most representative of the city’s vast range of colonial churches. It was part of the Clarist religious community convent and was built between 1619 and 1630. The building serves has served as a museum and a concert hall since 1968 and houses a wonderful collection of religious art including wood carvings, paintings and ornaments.
Carrera 7, Calle 11, Bogota, Colombia
This cathedral is particularly significant as it is built on the site where the first mass was celebrated after Bogota was founded back in 1538. It is a monumental building, the fourth built on this site and today it houses several treasures and relics as well as the tomb of the city’s founder, Gonzalo Jiménez de Quesada.
Carrera 7, Calle 11, Bogota, Colombia
This is a colonial residence where you will see the famous flower vase which was the cause of the Creole rebellion against Spanish rule that began on July 20th, 1810. The conflict arose when the vase’s owner, Jose Gonzales Liorente who was a Spaniard, refused to lend the vase for decoration at an event in honour of Antonio Villavicencio who was a prominent Creole. The refusal was used as a reason for the Creoles to fight against the Spaniards and this rebellion led to their independence.
3 - 23 Calle 20, Bogota, Colombia
This is another colonial mansion and was built around 1800. It now serves as a museum where you will see several cannons that were used at the battle of Boyaca. The house was offered to Bolivar in 1820 as a sign of gratitude for the victory of the Spaniards and is now home to his personal possessions, weapons, medals and uniforms.
56 - 84 Carrera 66, Bogota, Colombia
If it’s tropical flora you’re after, you’ve come to the right place. With a collection of over five thousand orchids as well as native and international flowers planted in beautiful surroundings, a trip to the gardens is the perfect way to escape the chaos of the city life going on outside.