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Overview to Bogota : Travel Guide and Tourist Information

Bogota

At first glance, Bogota doesn’t appear the most attractive of cities. But scratch at its surface and it reveals an amazing display of colonial architecture and a vibrant culture that can match practically any city in South America.

The colonial center of La Candelaria is the city's premier sightseeing area. A dense spread of attractions can be found here, radiating out from the central Plaza de Bolivar, and it’s worth allowing plenty of time to lose yourself amongst the fine old streets and squares.

The Plaza is flanked by significant architecture: on the north side, the massive cathedral is a gaudy gold affair. To the east, the immense Neoclassical Capital is there to be looked at but, due to safety reasons, not actually entered. Opposite, the Palacio de Justicia is just as impressive.

The surrounding streets continue to provide sightseeing attractions. The three churches along the southern edge of La Candelaria lend the area its reputation for well-preserved places of worship. Between these, the Casa de Nariño and Museo de Arte Colonial are also well worth a visit.

The commercial Downtown sits to the west of La Candelaria. Here, you will find the lush Parque de Santander (and its Museo del Oro), as well as the Museo de Arte Moderno. A giant hill looms to the north, offering spectacular views of the city from its summit, El Santario de Monserrate.

At the foot of the hill, Simon Bolivar’s old house has been turned into a museum commemorating his life and which provides a timely reminder of Colombia’s history; it’s hard not to be struck by just how far both city and country have come in recent years.

It may be a little unseemly towards the outskirts, but Bogota can count a number of genuine attractions amongst its collage of architectural styles. The streets are incredibly alive and the locals welcome travelers with genuine hospitality, making Bogota a disarmingly charismatic place.


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