Bogotá Botanical Garden
The José Celestino Mutis Botanical Garden (its full name) is one of the most beautiful green spaces in Bogotá, and an excellent place to visit if you’re interested in Colombia’s unique and diverse ecosystems, many of which are represented in the stunning greenhouses and flower displays. With a very reasonable entrance fee, as well as a restaurant and café, this botanical garden is an excellent place to spend a morning.
Bogotá Botanical Garden, Ac 63 #6895, Bogotá, Colombia, +57 1 4377060
Parque El Chico
One of Bogotá’s fancier parks, Chico Park is just alongside the ritzy Parque 93 neighbourhood. With shady, tree-lined avenues and pretty water features, it’s popular with families and couples on weekends. There’s even an actual double-decker London bus in the park that serves coffee!
Simon Bolivar Park
Bogotá’s largest park is a truly impressive 400 hectares and is so big that it’s easy to forget that you’re in a city of almost 10 million inhabitants. Dominated by a large central lake – which you can hire pedalos or canoes to explore – and surrounded by playing fields, woods, small cafés and restaurants, as well as running and cycling tracks, there’s truly something for everyone at Simon Bolivar Park.
Parque de Los Novios
The third in a trio of nearby green spaces – along with the Bogotá Botanical Garden and Simon Bolivar Park – The Lover’s Park is as romantic as its name suggests. Smaller and more intimate than Simon Bolivar, with a lake and some pretty water features, the park is a perfect place for a romantic picnic or stroll, with plenty of scenic bridges and park benches to enjoy.
Parque de Los Novios, Ac 63 #45-10, Bogotá, Colombia, +57 1 2217476
The National Park sits alongside Seventh Avenue between the old town of La Candelaria and the more modern Chapinero neighbourhood. Its urban location makes it a popular spot for joggers, dog-walkers, and students, and it really comes to life on weekends when it fills up with fitness-fanatics doing public dance and yoga classes. The park also continues up the mountainside where there are some excellent hiking trails. It’s also lovely at Christmas when it is home to some of Bogotá’s loveliest light displays.
Parque La Florida
Florida Park is right on the western city limits of Bogotá but has become increasingly well known in recent years among birders visiting the city due to its impressive populations of several important endemic species such as the Bogotá Rail and Apolinar’s Wren. The main park is busy at weekends with families enjoying barbeques and flying kites, but the protected part of the park has a lovely lake and reedbeds full of birdlife, and even wild guinea pigs!
Parque La Florida, Cota, Cundinamarca, Colombia, +57 1 4336241
Cerro de La Conejera Park
Bogotá boasts a number of humedales – protected wetland areas popular with naturalists – and La Conejera is one of the biggest and best of them. There’s a more traditional park adjacent to the wetlands, but the real treat is exploring the woods, marshes, and lakes in search of beautiful birdlife, including two species of owls. If you fancy yourself an urban birder, then La Conejera is definitely the park for you!