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A Visit to Bogota – Colombia’s capital city



Back in the 80’s, Bogota was considered one of the most dangerous cities in the world. Now, the capital of Colombia is a thriving, expanding city that offers plenty of recreation options to visiting tourists. More than 6 million people live in Bogota and their number is increasing each year. Because of this reason, Bogota officials started a transportation upgrading program that now offers one of the most efficient ways to travel around the city. Today’s Bogota looks nothing like the old crime infested city. Safer, more modern and a lot more fun, the renewed capital of Colombia is a great place to visit.

In the north area of the city, the Red zone district attracts the tourists with plenty of shopping malls and commercial venues. Modern multistory malls and charming boutiques offer a perfect shopping experience. Besides shops, the district is packed with clubs, restaurants, bars and even discos. Many renowned Colombian and American food and hotel chains are present here and the whole area is secured by an impressive law enforcement presence. The prices for logging vary from moderate to the most expensive five star hotels.

The main entering route into Bogota, the International Airport El Dorado, is situated in the west area of the city. This part of Bogota houses warehouses and factories together with commercial and residential areas. This is the result of the influence of the airport and economic trade that takes place nearby. For the regular tourist, the main attractions remain the hotels and the malls. Known chains are present here, such as Sheraton and Holiday Inn. The US embassy is also located in the area.

La Candelaria, the center of Bogota, is rich in historical attractions. Restaurants and parks together with boutiques and cafe bars occupy most of the Plaza Bolivar and the Presidential Place. Major governmental buildings are located here next to monumental churches and university buildings. Tourists will find here an interesting array of museums and historical buildings and places. If you climb on the nearby mountain you can visit the old Monserrate church. Small shops and souvenir stands are packed with cheap and beautiful memorabilia. The whole central area is a good place to stay overnight as lots of hotels and inns offer a variety of accommodations at decent or not so decent prices.

There is a place in Bogota where the tourist is advised to be vigilant. The south part of the city is occupied by the main residential district. Here the residential and industry buildings are mixed together and the area is quite large; this also means you can easy get lost if you are not a local. This area is also the most crime infested, with a crime rate that is way higher than in the other city areas. You will find no tourist attractions here and hotels are scarce.

As it happens with all the large cities, Bogota can seem quite confusing in the beginning. Be cautious and keep your valuables in a safe place. Usage of the native Spanish language is recommended so bring along with you a good Spanish conversation book or learn some basic Spanish before the trip.



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