Bogota
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Bogota

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Bogotá, the capital and largest city of Colombia, is located at the center of the country at an altitude of 2600 meters, which makes it the third-highest capital city in the world (after La Paz and Quito). It has a subtropical highland climate with an average temperature of 17 °C, varying from 3 to 25 °C (37 to 77 °F) during the course of the day. It is located in what is popularly called the "sabana de Bogotá", literally meaning "savannah”,  although the geographical site is actually a high plateau in the Andes mountains.

Vibrant and diverse, this eight million people metropolis is a mixture of old and new, trendy and traditional. Bogotá has earned a place among the major gastronomic capitals of Latin America; its museums, churches, parks, colonial sites, and fantastic nightlife will keep you busy and give you the “feeling” of the fourth largest city in South America.

The city was founded on the 6th of August 1538 with the name of Santa Fe by Gonzalo Jiménez de Quesada, who defeated the Chibcha Indians near Bacatá, an indigenous name for the capital of the Zipa confederation. This village was part of the territory occupied by the Muisca, an Indian group of the linguistic Chibcha family. In 1717, the viceroyalty of Nueva Granada was established here, and in 1819, Simón Bolívar chose it as the capital of the Gran Colombia, which included Colombia, Ecuador, Panama, Peru and Venezuela.

Declared World Book Capital by UNESCO and Iberoamerican Capital of Culture by the UCCI, Bogotá has become one of the most important cities of the continent, with public spaces such as plazas, parks and modern avenues. Its Mass Transit System is considered one of the most important in Latin America and a model for transportation systems in the country and the continent. The city has the world’s largest bicycling network – the Ciclovía, which covers close to 300 kilometers.

Bogotá is a cultural center with many activities and festivals such as the Iberoamerican Theater Festival, one of the biggest theater festivals in the world featuring dance, music, theater, circus, and other interesting activities; the Bogotá Summer Carnival, Rock al Parque (Rock at the Park), the most important open air rock music festival in Latin America which gathers over 320,000 music fans who can enjoy over 60 band performances for free during three days. This event has been so successful during its 15 years, that the city has replicated the initiative for other music genres, like Salsa al Parque, Hip Hop al Parque, Ballet al Parque, Opera al Parque, and Jazz al Parque.

La Candelaria, the city's oldest district in the historical center is a delightful, colourfully painted colonial barrio, with 300-year-old buildings – most now fully restored – which often run along steep cobbled streets. Visitors will find good local cafés, restaurants and museums.

The Gold Museum’s collection was declared a National Monument and is considered the largest of the world in its kind. It carries about 34,000 pieces of gold and 20,000 objects of bone, stone, ceramics and textiles from the Calima, Quimbaya, Muisca, Tairona, Sinu, and Tolima cultures among others.

Bogotá today is a modern city and a place of great contrasts: architectural, cultural, social, economical, gastronomical, …which make it a very interesting place to live an urban South American experience.

Amaterra tours featuring Bogotá :

- A taste of Colombia
- Amazon and Caribbean
- Colonial Andes and the Caribbean
- Andes, Coffee, and the Caribbean
- The Caribbean in 3 different colors