“You are the artist of your life. Remember that it’s okay to start over on a blank canvas from time to time. Think carefully about what you will create and make it a beautiful one.”
Sitting at 8,675′ elevation, Bogota is a city of 8 million people. We began our three-week stay in Colombia in the capitol with only three days in the city. We wandered La Candelaria, the main area of downtown, taking advantage of the free walking tours and the incredible foodie scene.
Things To Do in Bogota
There are over 30 museums in Bogota, but we decided to instead participate in the free city walking tour, and the graffiti tour to take advantage of being outdoors in the sunshine (priorities change when you live in a sun-deprived city (AKA Seattle) for three years). The City Walking Tour goes through a part of Botero’s Museum.
1) Free City Walking Tours
2) Ride The Teleferico de Monserrate
The tarifas (fares) vary based on which day you visit, but either way, this was a fun activity and provided a great vista of the city below. I can imagine that on a sunny, crowded weekend day, it would not be as pleasant, since this is a popular activity for locals Colombians as well.
3) Take The Graffiti Tour
Graffiti is a way of life in Bogota. It was and still continues to be, a way for locals to express themselves; to express their discontent with the corrupt government, and to speak out against the current politics. The story goes that graffiti was recently legalized due to one famous Canadian kid named Justin Beiber. Mr. Beiber was in Bogota promoting one of his songs when he had the urge to tag a wall one evening. Escorted by the police (yes, that’s how corrupt the government powers are here), he tagged a wall with the Canadian flag, only instead of the maple leaf, he painted a marijuana leaf. The following morning, his artwork was painted over, and in an uproar, the locals revolted and tagged all the walls they could. The government then had no choice but to legalize graffiti, so now there are designated areas in which locals can express themselves via street art. Below are some photos of this gorgeous, political, and provoking street art.
Where To Eat in Bogota
La Puerta Falsa
Open since 1816, La Puerta Falsa is not just a restaurant, it is a city landmark and a place of tradition for Bogota. Be prepared to enter a massive food coma upon completion of your meal.
Dos Gatos Y Simone
This restaurant was one of the highlights of our culinary experience in all of our five weeks in South America. Mexican with a hint of Colombian flare, expect a line out the door for this joint, but know that it is completely worth it! The mint lemonade comes included with the meal and it is out of this world.
Overall, Bogota was not our favorite city in Colombia, but we always enjoy visiting the capital to experience the vibe of the country as well as witness the life of locals.