The Top 10 Attractions of Bogota, Colombia

Colombia, Bogota, 16th century Iglesia de San Francisco, Bogota's Oldest Restored Church, Intersections of Avendia Jimenez and Carrera Septima
John Coletti / Getty Images

Bogota has much to offer any visitor, from the center of the historic district to ample parks and amusement centers, shopping, churches, museums, walks, and of course, restaurants, and nightlife.

01 of 10

Cerro de Monserrate

Cerro de Monserrate
Alexander G

You cannot visit the city without heading to the top for a spectacular view 10,000 ft above sea level. There is a ​17th-century church at the top along with food options and souvenirs.

Take the cable car or the funicular railway or, beware of walking up as tourists have reported being robbed along the way 

02 of 10

Amusement Parks

Parque Jaime Duque
Our Family/Nuestra Familia

Mundo Aventura park has mechanical games such as sky-coaster, roller coaster, hammer, and other adult amusements plus children's rides and a feeding zoo.

Salitre Mágico park offers rides and entertainment for all ages while Parque Jaime Duque has rides, a giant map, exhibitions and a zoo. A big hand holding the world symbolizes God, and a reproduction of the Taj Mahal displays reproductions of famous paintings. The park now is more famous for its raves and parties with renowned DJ's.

03 of 10

Soccer

Soccer in Bogota
Santiago La Rotta

Bogotá's best known and most popular soccer clubs are Millonarios and Independiente Santa Fe. Buy tickets well in advance with rival teams. If you don't speak Spanish your hotel concierge should be able to buy the tickets for you.

You'll find plenty of soccer/futbol action in the parks. You can find pick-up games on couchsurfing community boards or just ask if you can play along.

04 of 10

Carnaval de Bogotá

Carnavale in Bogota
Armando Calderon

Held on August 5-6 to celebrate Bogota's founding, the carnival is a festive event honoring Colombia's diversity with Comparsas, parades of folkloric groups, dances, ​and music that represent the cultural manifestations from different regions and cultures of the country and Verbenas, celebrations in suburban streets with dances, music, games and gastronomy from different regions of the country.

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05 of 10

Expoartesanias

Colombian art
Omino 71

Expoartesanías is the place to find the best traditional and modern Indian and Afro-Colombian handcrafts. It offers products made of different natural raw materials like fibers, fabrics, wood, silver, gold, ceramic and stone, among others. From its beginning in 1991, the main objective of Expoartesanias has been to lead handcraft product trends in the market.

06 of 10

Bullfights: Plaza de Toros la Santamaria

Bullfighter
Naoki Nakashima

While these might not be to everybody's taste, Colombians love a good challenge between bullfighter, the torero, matador, and the bull. Bullfighting season is January through February, but small displays are held throughout the year.

07 of 10

Shopping

Artisan shopping in Bogota
Stephen Downes

Columbia is known for its emeralds! There are also plenty of shopping options of other jewels, antiques, clothing, leather goods and other desirable goods.

There's a wide variety of shopping at all price points. Check out Zona T, the nightlife and shopping neighborhood for high-end fashion. The shopping mall El Retiro is moderately priced if you forget anything at home. If you're on a budget the markets sell coffee and make great souvenirs.

08 of 10

Palacio de San Francisco

Palacio de San Francisco
Noalsilencio

The Palace of San Francisco is an example of the Republican style that was fashionable at the beginning of the 20th-century in the capital of Colombia. In 1984, it was declared a national monument and is currently occupied by one of the biggest schools in the city, Nuestra Senora del Rosario.

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09 of 10

Enjoy the City Parks

Parque El Tunel
Jeffrey Burka

Bogotá has one of the largest urban parks of the world, the Simón Bolívar Metropolitan Park, the center of a recreational area that includes the Botanical Gardens of Bogotá, the headquarters of Coldeportes (the national sports authority), and the recently finished Virgilio Barco Library.

"El Tunal" park hosts the annual Rock al Parque, a free festival in which new and popular Latin rock bands show their talent.

10 of 10

Museo de Oro

Gold Museum in Bogota
BaconIsMagic.ca

Bogota has some amazing museums and art galleries. View the fabled collections of gold artifacts in the Gold Museum, and tour other museums: Museo Arqueologico, Museo de Artes y Tradiciones Populares, Museo de Arte Colonial, Museo de Arte Religioso, Museo Nacional, Museo de Arte Moderno, and Quinta de Bolivar for a glimpse of Colombian patrimony, art and cultural influences.