The Colombian capital is an open-air museum, with much to see and know, especially for travelers who can “stretch” their itineraries and tour it for at least one day. However, for those who have more days available and are looking for different places to visit in Colombia, it is a great recommendation to know what to visit near Bogotá.
In this post we will present 10 places near Bogotá to visit, know and experience, only a few kilometers away from the Colombian capital, but enjoying the most authentic of the country, dividing them into different themes, to make it easier to differentiate each place by what makes it special … How? Don’t miss it.
Places near Bogotá for nature lovers
1. La Laguna de Guatavita, a lagoon with a lot of mystery
One of the natural trails closest to the Colombian capital extends in the municipality of Sesquilé, less than 100 kilometers from Bogotá, being one of the most frequented sites near Bogotá by national and foreign tourists.
The Guatavita Lagoon is located at 3100 meters above sea level, highlighting the rest of the environment with its emerald color and offering travelers the possibility of admiring the views of the entire landscape as it is promoted.
In addition to the beauty of the place and the possibility of walking trails in the middle of nature, the Laguna de Guatavita has a special meaning : according to legend, the ancient civilizations that inhabited this region Colombian (prior to the arrival of the Spanish conquest) used the lagoon to offer to their gods, celebrating the rite of “El Dorado”. The new cacique bathed in gold and entered the lagoon, while the rest of the spectators threw small gold statuettes called tunjo, generating hundreds of subsequent dives by the conquerors in search of these offerings.
Traveler advice: being far from the town of Guatavita, the best option to get to the lagoon from Bogotá is by car but, to end the day or recover the possible fatigue, it is possible to stay a few kilometers away and rest in one of the best options glamping in Colombia.
2. La Chorrera Adventure Park, nature and adrenaline for everyone
Less than 50 kilometers to the southeast of Bogotá is the Parque Aventura La Chorrera, with its name in homage to the highest waterfall in Colombia and the sixth highest in all of South America, with almost 600 meters of waterfall.
This park encourages travelers to get into nature and enjoy the trails in the middle of the Andean forest, horseback riding and visits to the hot springs. All that? Yes, also in the park itself there is the El Chiflón waterfall, 55 meters high where it is also possible to practice rappelling.
Did you know that? The surroundings of La Chorrera park were lands bought by 16 peasant families who today dedicate themselves exclusively to tourism from the place through its guided walks, restaurants with local food and generating benefits for the environment.
3. Looking for adventure tourism in Colombia near Bogotá? Suesca is the answer
In the surroundings of Bogotá, less than 1 hour away, is Suesca, located in the municipality of Cundinamarca, considered the largest climbing park in all of Colombia. Its rock formations make be a “trap” for climbers who seek adrenaline from different points and heights and, for those who have never tried the activity, options for beginners.
For those who prefer to do other types of activities that are not related to climbing but that generate a sensation of adrenaline, in Suesca it is also possible to practice rappelling, bungee jumping, circuits of mountain bike or even visit the caves in the area.
Travel advice : being so close to Bogotá, it is possible to take a bus for an hour from the city to reach Suesca and, also, for those who wish to stay in Suesca, it is It is possible to do it in hostels, glampings and rural hotels.
4. Tatacoa Desert, one of the most impressive dry deserts in Colombia (and the world)
The dry forest of Tatacoa (badly called desert) is one of the most incredible landscapes that can be enjoyed near Bogotá which, despite being 350 kilometers away It is still a good “getaway” for a couple of days to enjoy Colombian nature.
According to science, the forest was literally a fertile site that, over the years, began to dry up and a kind of “desert” was produced, which is what can be seen today in day.
Within the desert it is possible to go hikes through the trails, horseback riding, visit the astronomical observatories and even explore the surroundings of a natural pool in the middle of the desert.
Traveler advice: although the nights are cool, the days are very (but very) hot, so comfortable clothing is crucial to enjoy the destination.
5. Chingaza National Natural Park
As you will see, Colombian nature surrounds the most important city in the country and for that very reason is that this theme is one of the most chosen by travelers. Near Bogotá, there is the Chingaza National Natural Park, a set of lagoons of glacial origin, in the middle of the Andes Mountains where, in addition to walking the trails to visit it, it is a great place to enjoy the local fauna and flora.
- Be careful: do not be fooled by the few kilometers that separate Bogotá from the National Park (which are less than 100) since the roads are very winding and you can get there It will take about 4 hours to travel, so it is advisable to leave early.
Towns near Bogotá to learn about Colombian culture
6. Monguí, where getting lost in its streets “is good”
Located in the municipality of Boyacá, the town of Monguí is one of those listed in the Heritage Villages of Colombia where they take travelers to travel back in time to the colonial era, walking through cobbled streets, old buildings and even the possibility of entering nature with the Páramo de Ocetá.
Did you know that Monguí was born as a tourist destination after one of its residents began to sew soccer balls? Today, the used in the professional soccer tournament in Colombia, they are balls made in Monguí.
7. Sutatausa, tranquility and expressions of rock art near Bogotá
Less than 100 kilometers from the Colombian capital, one of the great “cultural” plans to do near Bogotá is to visit the town of Sutatausa and, as some would say, “lower some revolutions” and visit the quiet streets of this colonial town that still preserves colonial vestiges.
The Plaza de Toros (open but not in operation), “postcard” chapels and the possibility of visiting the cliffs and natural spaces full of art cave paintings and pictographs (paintings on the rocks) that, according to history, were created by the Susa tribe, who inhabited the area hundreds of years ago.
8. Villa de Leyva, a trip in time assured
Continuing with part of the list of the Heritage Towns of Colombia, Villa de Leyva should be a key destination to visit not only because it is close to the capital, but because it is a place that looks like a storybook, ideal to spend a weekend with your partner near Bogotá.
The cobbled streets, the white-painted houses, the chapels that deserve a photo and the gardens decorated with flowers create an almost perfect combination that mesmerizes the travelers who visit the area. In addition, the museums of Villa de Leyva are highly recommended, especially the Chocolate Museum or the curious Casa Terracota.
- Travel advice : rent a car, explore the streets and natural surroundings of Villa de Leyva.
Attractions near Bogotá
9. The Salt Cathedral, a must see in Bogotá
Despite not being located in the heart of the capital, the Salt Cathedral of Colombia is less than an hour from Bogotá, being a site that must be visited in the surroundings of the city.
An old mine, 200 meters deep, darkness and one of the most curious places in the world. The Salt Cathedral is a cathedral that, as its name says and, literally, It was built with salt when the mine was closed due to the possibility of collapse and what was once a chapel built by the workers of the place was enlarged, using more than 250 thousand tons of salt, creating a space for more than 10 thousand people.
Travel fact: inside the Salt Cathedral is the largest cross in the world carved in saline rock.
Coffee plantations near Bogotá
10. Choachí plantations, one of the best authentic places to get to know Colombian coffee near Bogotá
It is known that Colombian coffee is one of the most recognized worldwide and visiting coffee plantations is not only knowing the national product but also delving into the culture of a coffee-growing country as is Colombia. One of the best places to visit the plantations is the city of Choachí, just over 50 kilometers from Bogotá, on the same side as when traveling to Chingaza National Natural Park.
In addition to the possibilities of going on an excursion (generally to the Hacienda Coloma), enjoying breakfasts, lunches and folkloric shows, travelers can go on their own through a rental car, within the options to do department of Cundinamarca, one of the most important coffee regions in Colombia.
- Travel information: throughout the entire department, different coffee routes are developed to fully enjoy culture.
Bogotá is an incredible city, with hundreds of places to discover and visit that, despite “competing” with the tourist giants of Cartagena or Santa Marta, has managed to establish itself as one of the most visited destinations in Colombia. How not to visit the surroundings of Bogotá? Write down all these options for your visit!