How to Spend 1 Day in Bogotá
The vibrant capital of the Andean nation of Colombia is at once steeped in history and sophisticatedly modern. If you’re short on time in Bogotá, you can still explore the cobbled historic center, sample some local flavors, and get a taste of the buzzing nightlife. Here’s how to spend 24 hours in Bogotá.
Morning: City Sightseeing
There’s a lot to see in Bogotá, so get an early start for a sightseeing tour around the city’s cultural epicenter, La Candelaria. Depending on whether you choose a walking, biking, or bus tour, you might also see quirky sculptures by Colombian artist Francisco Botero at the Botero Museum, browse the world’s largest collection of pre-Columbian gold at the Gold Museum (Museo del Oro), take a cable car ride up Monserrate for photo-worthy views over the city, or visit historic Bolívar Square (Plaza de Bolívar), home of the Primatial Cathedral of Bogotá (La Catedral Primada de Bogotá) and the National Capitol.
Afternoon: Flavors of Bogotá
Now that you’ve worked up an appetite, treat your tastebuds to the flavors of Colombia during an afternoon tour of the city’s local markets, bakeries, and street-food stalls. Sample exotic tropical fruits, empanadas, typical Colombian cheese bread, and hot chocolate as you explore with a local. Alternatively, spend your afternoon shopping the city’s artisan markets, where you’ll find wooden ornaments, colorful knitted bags, leather goods, and traditional indigenous jewelry, all handmade by local craftspeople. You’ll pick up some quality souvenirs, as well as some haggling skills from your guide.
Night: Salsa Dancing
Polish off your day in the Colombian capital with a popular evening pastime: salsa dancing. Guided salsa tours offer insight into the history and culture of Colombia’s favorite dance. Head out on a club hop to some of the city’s best local hot spots for dancing, people watching, and sipping local rum or aguardiente, the anise-flavored liquor that’s Colombia’s national drink. Those with two left feet can kick off the night with a private salsa lesson from a professional dancer, followed by an opportunity to try out those new moves on the dance floor of a lively salsa club.