Weekend itinerary for Bogota, Colombia | What to see in Bogota in 2 days

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Hey guys, I just returned from quite a long trip (the longest one I’ve taken in ages) and I can’t wait to share with you my impressions from the capital of Colombia, beautiful and unique Bogota and also share with you our weekend itinerary for Bogota as well as what to see in Bogota in 2 days.

Bogota doesn’t have the fame of a city that has a lot to offer – all the people I’ve talked to about Bogota told me that it’s okay to skip the city. However, I decided to give Bogota a chance and stay there for slightly longer than two days on the way to Puerto Rico from London. Many people also visit Bogota as a stopping point on the way to more famous places in Colombia such as Cartagena and Cali. If you only have a weekend or just two days to spend in Bogota and looking for things to do in Bogota, I’ve got you covered!

My best friend has lived in Bogota for a couple of years and she told me that the beauty services in Bogota are amazing. I decided to challenge that and check it for myself – you can read about my findings at the end of this post. And as always, I will publish a post about the most Instagrammable and photogenic places in Bogota (you can read it here) in case you’re looking for some really nice locations!

Is Bogota safe? Safety in Bogota, Colombia in 2019

Safety in Bogota was one of my main concerns before visiting the city. As I already mentioned before, my best friend lived in Bogota for 2 years and nothing has ever happened to her, however, she also knew some horror stories. Before visiting Bogota, I spoke to a couple of people who visited the city and they told me that everything would be fine if I stay in the “rich” part of the city. I also found a lot of advice online about safety in Bogota and many people mentioned that the funicular to go to Monserrate and La Candelaria along with the Plaza Bolivar are very touristic, however, they are not very safe.

However, after visiting Bogota now I can tell you that at no point I felt unsafe and nobody was paying any unusual attention to us (unlike in Mexico City, where people were looking at me all the time as if I were a very exotic person). The majority of people in Colombia look Spanish and it’s perfectly possible to blend in and not attract any unwanted attention.

Weekend itinerary for Bogota, Colombia | What to see in Bogota in 2 days

Is Bogota dangerous?

Of course, I was cautious all the time and followed the advice I’ve heard. So what’s the advice for safety in Bogota in 2019?

Travel safety tips in Bogota:

  • Don’t wear a lot of expensive jewellery and brands when going for a walk in Bogota
  • Bring a bag with the zipper and always pay attention to it
  • Don’t walk around with a phone or a camera in your hands
  • Don’t go to the districts in the south of Bogota. The full list of the areas to avoid in Bogota you can find here
  • Take online taxis, e.g. Cabify is operating in Bogota. Uber is also present in Bogota, but it’s illegal, so if a driver is caught, he’ll lose his driving licence for a while and his car will be confiscated. That’s why all the Uber drivers in Bogota are super conscious and make you seat in the front seat next to the driver. Also all the Uber cars are ancient and shabby.

So, Is Bogota dangerous? Well, I didn’t find the city dangerous at all. However, the area close to Monserrate is a bit dodgy and I would recommend taking a taxi right away and avoiding walking there. The best part of the city is undoubtedly el Chapinero and the North of the city, e.g. Calle 70+, where there are so many fabulous restaurants, nice shops and places to go for a walk.

Weekend itinerary for Bogota: what to see in Bogota in 2 days

If you’re staying in Bogota for two days, I would recommend you staying near the Calle 93 – this district is really safe and almost all the hotels are located around there. We stayed in the Hotel Estelar Parque 93 and it was good – we had a lovely room, very good breakfast and most importantly, all the places for going out and shopping were a short walk away, so we didn’t have to ask for a taxi every single time.

Other great hotels to consider in Bogota:

BOG Hotel, Embassy Suites by Hilton and GHL Bioxury.

Day 1 of the weekend in Bogota:

Explore the street art of La Candelaria and head to the Plaza Bolivar

I assume you either arrive very early or a day before, so you have a full first day to enjoy in Bogota. I would recommend you having breakfast in your hotel and then heading to La Candelaria.

Start with the main square while it’s empty and you can take a good photo there. Plaza Bolivar is located about 40 min driving from the 93rd street depending on the traffic. We took an Uber there and it was 17,000 COP.

Best things to do in Bogota for a weekend

La Candelaria is one of the most photogenic neighbourhoods of Bogota. It’s famous for its street art and affordable nightlife. Some of the universities in Bogota are located in La Candelaria, so it’s always full of young people. However, at night it gets dodgy as it’s very close to the Southern zones of Bogota and to the favelas, so I wouldn’t recommend you staying there at night, unless you have local friends and would go out with them. Hence, it’s best to visit La Candelaria in the morning. Candelaria is a bit similar to Coyoacan in Mexico city. Have you ever been? If not, you can read my post about beautiful colourful Coyoacan!

You can also take one of the street art tours of La Candelaria, for example, this tour (check the availability now). However, if you want to explore on your own, you can just wander around by yourself. La Candelaria is really pretty with a lot of photogenic colourful houses, so you can easily spend the entire morning/afternoon there. You can also find a nice spot for lunch in La Candelaria.

La Candelaria in Bogota

Head to Asadero Capachos for a fun lunch

We had lunch in the place called Asadero Capachos – it was so festive with live music and dancing even during the lunchtime. The specialty of the place is meat, so head there only if you’re a carnivore. Prices are great – 28,000 COP for a giant meat plate and 8000 COP for a soup that was so big that it was enough to keep me full until the end of the day.

Best lunch in Bogota

Visit the Gold Museum

One of the highlights of Bogota is the Museum of Gold – it’s located in the city centre, right next to Candelaria and Santa Fe, so you don’t have to take a taxi or walk far to the museum. It’s very popular, so it does get crowded, however, it’s an interesting museum that is totally worth visiting.

Go out in the evening

If you still have any strength left, it’s time to finally go out and enjoy what Bogota has to offer in terms of nightlife! One of the best places to do so in Andres DS around the 70th street, just 18 minutes walking from the Calle 93. This restaurant / bar is not similar to anything I’ve ever seen in my life – it has 5 floors and it’s massive! Every floor looks like a collection of all sorts of items, it’s very hard to describe, how it actually looks, so it’s best just to go and visit it.

Make sure to call and book in advance, as the walk-in system is very messy and it took us ages to get a table. Even though the place is so huge, it seems like entire Colombia gathers there, so there are literally no free tables. There’s also Andres in Chia – that’s about an hour driving from the north of Bogota. Andres in Chia is the original restaurant, the one that opened first and it’s even more impressive than the one in the city centre.

The prices aren’t low – they are pretty much the same as in Europe, however, the portions and the quality of the food are absolutely great! Also, the service was pretty amazing, especially for such a busy place!

Andres Bogota

Day 2 in Bogota: hipster district and the fine dining

On the second day in Bogota, you can have breakfast either in your hotel or in one of the amazing places around the Calle 93. You can wake up a bit later, as you probably have stayed in Andres until late at night.

If you enjoy walking, you can walk all the way to Chapinero. It’s around 40 minutes walking from Calle 93 and it’s a nice walk. You will pass a couple of gorgeous colourful buildings, churches and just beautiful houses. Chapinero is one of the most expensive districts to live in Bogota and that’s why so many amazing businesses are located around there. There are plenty of hipster cafes and restaurants and you can pick one for a quick bite / coffee or even for lunch before you head to the next point of interest.

Once you finished, take a taxi to Monserrat.

Chapinero, Bogota

Enjoy the views of Monserrat

After lunch, take a taxi to Monserrat – well, to the funicular, so you enjoy a unique ride up. A return ticket for the funicular costs 21,000 COP and the way up was almost vertical and even scary – but that made it even more unique. I would go up there already just because of the funicular experience!

However, there are more reasons to get up to the Monserrat – the views from there are absolutely stunning! As you probably already know, Bogota is a very high city – it’s located at the 2.7 km above the sea level. However, if you go all the way to Monserrat, that would be almost 3.2 km above the sea level. That was honestly the highest altitude I’ve experienced so far and surprisingly I felt okay! However, it was quite tough to get up the starts. There are not many stairs up there, but still you need to get up a bit to be able to see the view!

The panorama of Bogota is really impressive – on one side you can see the entire city stretching in front of you; on the other side, it’s pure vegetation and nice nature. However, because of the pollution in Bogota, the city below is usually is hidden by mist, so you can’t see it very clearly (it’s the same case of Hong Kong, if you ever been there).

Safety tips for Bogota Colombia

Have dinner in the 360 degrees panoramic spinning restaurant

One of the unique and amazing things to do in Bogota is to visit the 360 degrees panoramic spinning restaurant in the World Trade Centre called La Fregata Giratorio. You can see the entire city from there and the view will be very different from the one you saw in Monserrat. Besides, you will be able to see the entire Bogota from there. Try to arrive before sunset, so the restaurant does the complete spin before it’s dark.

Panoramic restaurants in Bogota

I hope this 2-day itinerary for Bogota wasn’t too buy! As I promised, I will tell you a bit about the beauty services in Bogota, so you can get some (in case you’re interested)

Beauty salons in Bogota

As I mentioned before, my best friend used to live in Bogota for 2 years and she was always telling me how great and amazing the beauty services are there. Coincidentally, my nails appointment in London went terribly wrong and all the lash extensions specialist with decent reviews were sold out for weeks in advance, so I decided to get this done in Bogota. I also had a bit of time on the third day, so I decided to get my hair done as well.

For lash extensions I picked Nambad – Con Hilo Depilo just 18 min walking from my hotel – this place had great reviews and I liked their work on the Instagram. Natural-looking lash extensions cost me ca 200,000 COP which is around £50. That’s twice cheaper than in London – and that one was one of the best places in Bogota.

As for my hair – I wanted balayage in Bogota – I picked the In Vitro Peluqeria and the place was amazing. Now, here my poor Spanish was a problem, so Pepe was there as well as a translator. I couldn’t have been happier with the service and the result and in case you’ll looking for haircuts or hair dye in Bogota, this place is really the best. It’s located in Chapinero, so you can walk around and explore the zone later. My blond balayage on hair cost £90 in total compared to whopping £250 in London.

Beauty salons in Bogota

Finally, for my nails – I picked gel manicure and pedicure in Bogota – I choose the place called Opalo Nails Spa and it was great as well as I was very happy with the result! Gel nails Manicure + pedicure together took no longer than 1 hour and I was really happy with the result (and the price of £35 for all).

I must confirm, that the quality of the beauty services in Bogota is really high, but I was looking for all the places on Instagram and picked the places based on their work in the photos. In case you’re looking for a manicure in Bogota or lash extensions or even a haircut in Bogota, don’t hesitate – I think it’s a great place to get these things done in Bogota.

I hope you enjoyed this post about the weekend itinerary for Bogota and what to see in Bogota in 2 days!

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