Things to do in Bogotá

Take the city’s pulse at Plaza Simón Bolívar

Overlooked by the Andes and flanked by the Palace of Justice and the National Capitol, Plaza Simón Bolívar is the place to take Bogota’s pulse. Sit at one of the nearby cafes and order local speciality Chocolate Santafereño, aka hot chocolate with cheese.

Hit the streets with the Ciclovia

On Sunday morning head out to the Ciclovía section of the city, where 120km of the city’s main roads of the city are closed to traffic and from 0700 to 1400 approximately two million cyclists, runners, skaters and families take back the streets.

Get on a salsa tip at Quiebracanto

This long-standing bar ( resides over two levels and is a legend amongst the locals. It’s most renowned for live salsa, though it also showcases the best of new Colombian Folklore. If you’d rather mix with the traveller crowd, head down on a Wednesday night for electronic sounds.

Go hiking at the weekends

Hook up with this Bogotá hiking group (tel: +57 1 2833765; and head into the Andean mountains with them at the weekends. Expect an early start and long hike (eight hours), so go easy on the aguardiente the night before.

Go market trading

Paloquemao Market ( might not be the most popular market on the tourist trail, but is the real deal. The flowers outside will have your nose twitching, whilst indoors there’s every Colombian fruit, vegetable, meat and street food delicacy under the beating morning sun. Only the most foolish gringo would leave without eating an arepa.

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