City Center

Not a heartbreaker, Bogotá’s scrappy business center – busiest along Calle 19 and Carrera 7 – is easiest to deal with on Sunday, when Ciclovía shuts down Carrera 7, and the Mercado de San Alejo flea market is in force. Some of its most-visited parts (notably the Museo del Oro) cluster near La Candelaria by Av Jiménez.

Iglesia de la Veracruz

Calle 16 No 7-19; h4:30-7:30pm Mon- Fri, Mass 8am, 11am, noon & 6pm Mon-Fri, noon & 6pm Sat, 11am, noon & 5pm Sun) Iglesia de la Veracruz is known as the National Pantheon because many of the heroes of the struggle for independence have been buried here.

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Iglesia de San Francisco Iglesia de San Francisco

www.templodesanfrancisco.com; cnr Av Jiménez & Carrera 7; h7am-7pm Mon-Fri, 7am-2pm & 4:30-7:30pm Sat & Sun) Built between 1557 and 1621, the Church of San Francisco, just west of the Gold Museum, is Bogotá’s oldest surviving church. Of particular interest is the extraordinary 17th-century gilded main altarpiece, which is Bogotá’s largest and most elaborate piece of art of its kind. It’s hard to get a close look, as Masses run nearly hourly all day. It’s less intrusive to look up at the green-and-gold Mudejar ornamentation of the ceiling under the organ loft.

5.0/5 rating (1 votes)

Iglesia La Tercera Iglesia La Tercera

Calle 16 No 7-54; h7am-6pm Mon-Fri, Mass 11am Sat, noon & 1pm Sun) Boasts a fine stone facade and lovely wood-carved altars in walnut and cedar set on white walls below a wood-carved ceiling.

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Mirador de la Torre Colpatria Mirador de la Torre Colpatria

Carrera 7 No 24-89; admission COP$3500; h6-9pm Fri, 11am-5pm Sat, Sun & holidays) Monserrate offers superb views, but only from the 48th-floor outside deck of the Colpatria Tower can you catch a superb view of the bullring, backed by office buildings and the mountains – there are also fine 360-degree vistas across the city. The 162mhigh skyscraper – Colombia’s tallest – was finished in 1979.

5.0/5 rating (2 votes)

Museo de Arte Moderno Museo de Arte Moderno

www.mambogota.com; Calle 24 No 6-00; adult /student COP$4000/2000; h10am-6pm Tue-Sat, noon-5pm Sun) Opened in the mid-1980s in a spacious hall designed by revered local architect Rogelio Salmona, the Museum of Modern Art focuses on various forms of visual arts (painting, sculpture, photography, video) from the beginning of the 20th century to the present. Exhibits change frequently, often highlighting Latin America artists. The cinema here screens films on weekends at 3pm and 5pm (COP$4000).

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Quinta de Bolívar Quinta de Bolívar

www.quintadebolivar.gov.co; Calle 20 No 2-91 Este; adult/child COP$3000/1000; h9am- 5pm Tue-Fri, 11am-4pm Sat & Sun) About 250m downhill to the west from Monserrate station, this lovely historic home museum is set in a garden at the foot of the Cerro de Monserrate. The mansion was built in 1800 and donated to Simón Bolívar in 1820 in gratitude for his liberating services. Bolívar spent 423 days here over nine years. Its rooms are filled with period pieces, including Bolívar’s sword. Less is said about its later days as a mental institution. There’s an English- and French-language brochure available for COP$2500, or a Spanish-language audio guide for COP$1000.

5.0/5 rating (2 votes)