Bogotá is one of South American’s most eclectic and interesting cities. Encircled by the snowy peaks of the Andes, it radiates urban cool. The city has a packed calendar of music, art and fashion events, as well as some fantastic cultural attractions. It houses the country’s most famous museum, Museo del Oro, which explores the cultural history of gold in Colombia. There are more than 55,000 gold exhibits from all the country’s major pre-Hispanic cultures. Another interesting museum is Museo Histórico Policial, housed in the former police HQ, where you can learn about the country’s law enforcement with an exhibition on Pablo Escobar and guided tours by police officers.
La Candelaria, Bogotá’s historic downtown area, is crammed with carefully preserved buildings. Ornate churches sit alongside colonial mansions. The epicentre of the district is Bolivar Square, one of the most photogenic spots in the city, surrounded by the cathedral and the vast, colonnaded National Capitol Building. But Bogotá isn’t just renowned for its historic buildings – it’s a city where old is juxtaposed with new. As you walk the streets of La Candeleria and beyond, you’ll find upmarket boutiques, edgy art galleries and bars open until the small hours. And the neighbourhood is also renowned for its striking grafitti murals.
Bogotá is also a great stop for foodies. Enjoy a breakfast of hot chocolate and cheese – a popular dish to stave off the Andean chill – and try a bowl of ajiaco, chicken and potato soup often served with rice, corn and avocado. There are also lots of upmarket restaurants serving dishes from around the world.