How to Spend Hours in Bogotá, Colombia

Monserrate gives you stunning views across Bogotá, Colombia
Monserrate gives you stunning views across Bogotá, Colombia | © Pierrick Lemaret / Alamy Stock Photo

Bogotá is a rapidly growing and developing city with more than 8m residents. There is a thriving culture, and it is filled with vibrant and unique places to be. Colombia and its capital have enjoyed a steady increase in tourism over the past years. If you only have 24 hours to spend in Bogotá, make sure you check out these places and restaurants.

Interested in visiting? Let our local insider show you the best of Bogotá on Culture Trip’s exclusive eight-day Colombian Andes trip.

Monserrate

No trip to Bogotá is complete without a trip 3,152m (10,341ft) up into the mountains to the Monserrate cathedral and its spectacular viewing point. The view from the top of the mountain gives you a real sense of the size and seemingly endless boundaries of the city. To reach the top of the mountain and the cathedral, you can take a cable car, train or, alternatively, trek up to the top.

Sample local cuisine

Ajiaco is a typical soup dish from the Bogotá region, made with chicken, a variety of potatoes and herbs. The dish is often served with rice, corn and avocado. There is a traditional and somewhat unique restaurant hidden in an underground area within La Candelaria, called Bolera San Francisco. This restaurant also serves traditional Colombian dishes, prime cuts of beef and other local cuisine containing rice, beans and potatoes.

Traditional Colombian ajiaco is served with patacon, avocado and capers

La Candelaria

La Candelaria is the historic center of Bogotá, where the city was first founded over 300 years ago. Much of the neighborhood is made up of colorful colonial buildings, with much of the period architecture being preserved alongside the modern office buildings occupying the area. Plaza Bolívar is a huge square plaza in the middle of the city surrounded by a cathedral and ministry buildings. You can enjoy a fascinating guided walking tour of La Candelaria and admire its eclectic array of street art as part of Culture Trip’s exclusive eight-day Colombian Andes trip, led by our local insider.

La Candelaria, Bogotá, has plenty of colorful buildings

The Gold Museum is another must-see attraction in downtown Bogotá and contains over 55,000 hand-crafted pieces of gold, found in various regions of the country.

The Poporo Quimbaya is a Columbian gold artifact

If you are in the city on a Friday or Saturday night, be sure to visit the uniquely decorated restaurant Andrés, which has branches close to the Andino Shopping Mall and another one in Chía, around one hour north of the city. Alternatively, you can watch the sun set over the city from Apache, a rooftop bar with panoramic views and an extensive cocktail list.

Sample Colombian cuisine at Andrés Carne de Res restaurant in Chía

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