This post outlines 5 fun things to do in Bogota. Perfect for anyone with a few days to kill in the Colombian capital.
Why you should Visit Bogota
Colombia’s kicking capital is one of the most rapidly changing cities on the planet and easily one of the most exciting in South America. With warm welcoming people and one or two novel ideas for how to entertain locals and the travellers that venture here, Bogota surprises you in ways you’d never have expected. It’s very much the beating heart of the new (and pretty safe) Colombia and its future looks much brighter than its relatively recent past.
5 Fun Things to do in Bogota
1) Watch a football match at El Campin
Football is a national obsession in Colombia. The country has featured at the last two World Cups and there is passionate support for both the national team and the many club sides. While Colombia these days tend to play most of their competitive games in the coastal city of Barranquilla, El Campin remains one of the country’s most famous football stadiums and is home of two major club teams – Millonarios & Deportivo Santa Fe.
The Colombian league usually runs from late January to early December with at least one match virtually every week at El Campin.
2) Visit the Police Museum to learn about Colombia’s violent Drug Wars
Police Museum Photo by young shanahan, CC BY 2.0
The National Police Museum is fantastic for those looking to delve into the country’s recent troubles. One room houses a giant array of weapons seized during police raids on the Cartels over the past few decades. Another is dedicated in graphic detail to the hunt and eventual capture of the infamous druglord Pablo Escobar.
Visitors are often guided around by serving police officers who will doubtlessly have a story or two to tell, especially if they were in the force during the violent 1990’s.
3) Hop on a bike and explore the city during the Sunday Ciclovia
One of the best ways to see the city is via the Ciclovia which takes place every Sunday. All morning and up until about 2:00 p.m. many of the main avenues are closed to traffic allowing cyclists and rollerskaters to whizz around this vast metropolis without the risk of being wiped out by an impatient motorist.
It can be tiring work especially in the uphill sections thanks to the altitude but there are refreshment stands all along the routes which are clearly marked. There are a few places in the traveller districts where you can rent out a bike fairly cheaply and it’s a good way of getting around and seeing Bogota.
4) Go to the top of Cerro de Monserrate
View of Bogota from Monserrate, CC BY-SA 2.0
For the best views of the city take a ride on the funicular or cable car up to the top of Cerro Monserrate. Only from the top of the Cerro de Monserrate will you truly be able to appreciate the city’s immense scale with great views of the downtown area and the suburbs which seem to go on and on into the distance. It’s almost certainly the best place in all of Bogota to catch the sunset.
5) Party on the Street
Colombia’s new-found optimism is most visible on Friday and Saturday nights when people head down into the centre to celebrate the end of the week. Despite its developing international financial districts, this is still very much a Latin American city and people like nothing more than a good fiesta.
Some major streets and avenues are closed to traffic every Friday night and quickly fill up with people as far as the eye can see as performers, musicians and street stalls help people get into the party mood. It can be a great way to meet and interact with the locals and potentially make some friends to later go to bars with and party into the night.
This article was last updated in May 2020.