Bogota

Bogota Travel Blog

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Just outside our hostel.
The start of our journey!

Well we are finally here! Felt like 2 days of travelling, and in fact it was as we left on 4th Sept from Chch to Auckland at 11am (flight 1hr), then Auckland - Buenos Aires at 4:30pm (flight 12hrs) and then we had to rush like mad to get to the transit counter as our flight was leaving in 45mins for Bogota! The line was pretty long, but slowely but surely we got there and were on our way. Annoying thing was though that the flight didn´t leave for another hour due to god knows what (there were dodgey maintaince people on the plane running tubes through the eisles.... DODGEY Argentina Airlines! Also, NO movies like on Thai airlines, but we did get to see Shrek 3 and some old-time movie called Waitress.
View from the top! At the Monserrate.
So was a very agonising trip really! Finally got into Bogota at about 7¨30pm their time, which by rough estimation was about 12 noon on the 5th Sept. Had a lot of trouble getting money out (and who said that people speak some English - you were oh-so wrong!!) Nathan had an amusing time trying to communicate with a lady from the bank when trying to withdraw money from the ATM. He could only get $40,000 COP out (which is about $30 NZD) as that was the limit! Got us a taxi though and that´s what mattered!

Bogota is noted as "extreme high risk" on the travelsmart government website. To be perfectly honest I know I have been a little on edge but really there is no need to. People are so friendly here and it´s not far from the hostel to walk to everything )which we have done).
Today is our first day looking around and it´s very different to what we expected. We are in the old part of Bogota which is really nice - cobblestone streets (rather narrow)!

So we had a nice sleep in until about 9am this morning and then wondered out to the streets of Bogota´s city centre. After getting money out so we could infact eat, (and the security guard telling us he was sorry cos he had to check our bag - this is what I mean by friendly cos you could tell he felt like he was invading on us as tourists as we aren´t used to it).

We went to the Gold Museum after eventually finding it - pretty amazing place. We sat down to figure out where we would have lunch while there as we were both starving by this stage as we had no brekkie! Some dodgey guy was wondering around us and then sat beside us.
I think he got the idea that we weren´t stupid and we high-tailed it to the next section (and then he found us again! But we soon left after that anyway).

So, after bellys rumbling we went down this little street with some Italian pizza bars. We were looking in one and then one of the guys comes up and said something in Spanish, motioning us in - so that was that pretty much. Now some of these guys spoke English (horray!) although we understood what they said anyway, they usually just say Buenos dias, ¿como estas? (Good day, how are you?), so for an expensive amount of $4,000 COP ($2.60 NZD!!!!!!!) we got a Pepsi and massive bit of pizza. We were also introduced to an interesting way of getting people to buy things. A little kid comes up to each table and gives our 3 lollies, to which Nathan says "Gracious!!" and nearly opens one, until I say not to incase he comes around wanting you to buy them.
Monserrate looking out.
So... what do you think happened? Yup, stands infront of us and blurts out some sales pitch we can´t understand. Interesting!

We´ve also seen the poverty here, and a low scale I am sure. People with cups begging (again, trying to say something to us we can´t understand and probably just as well as I feel sorry for them as it is without the sob story). Also while sitting down today we had some guy come up to us who seemed pretty geniune and we had to tell him we spoke little Spanish and he then spoke again saying ¨money¨ and then motioning getting his throat cut. We said no and he went away. I have no idea what he said but would´ve been interesting anyway!! Don´t worry Mum and Dad - we´re OK!!! Everyone is pretty friendly and have gone out of their way to help since we have been here, and Soraya - you don´t have people coming up to you trying to sell you things like in Thailand either (just people saying something that sounds weird, which we have guessed is something to do with selling cellphones!)

We also went up on the tram way thing (pretty much a gondola, but it looks like tram in Spanish) to the Monserrate.
Gardens
No one speaks much English so it was interesting, here I am pointing up (meaning want to go up the tramway) and he´s like ¨Speak no English, sorry" (and that sounded pretty good to me... no English - what was that!) So after flicking through our guidebook and pointing at "Monserrate" he was like "si!" and thank goodness for that! So, clambering in, with Nathan hugging the centre pole of the tram we were off with 2 security guards and the operator in tow. Even I will admit it was pretty freaky as it pretty much goes straight up and there is also a railway line up there aswell! It was really beautiful up there aswell, alot of the trees and bushes we saw (in the garden) you can get in NZ.

So... that´s Day 1 for all! Don´t worry, wont be sending out these long emails all the time, we actually have ana ccount which we will upload photos and news to for everyone which I´ll email out soon.


It´s nearly 6pm on 5th Septmber, )and 11am 6th September NZ time!) we have 2 full days here and we are off to the Salt Cathedral tomorrow hopefully and no idea about the next day, we really should try to get on our bus to San Gil then but we will see.

Adios Amigos!

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Just outside our hostel.
Just outside our hostel.
View from the top! At the Monserra…
View from the top! At the Monserr…
Monserrate looking out.
Monserrate looking out.
Gardens
Gardens
OK, time to look for another image…
OK, time to look for another imag…
Gold museum.
Gold museum.
Nathan (being a geek again)!
Nathan (being a geek again)!
... and again... the wideness cont…
... and again... the wideness con…
This is what they used to wear (no…
This is what they used to wear (n…
Looking up at the route to the Mon…
Looking up at the route to the Mo…
Looking down at the cableway.
Looking down at the cableway.
Monserrate
Monserrate
Monserrate
Monserrate
Bogota Hostels review
Cost us $40,000 pesos per night. We were in a dorm-type room with a toilet. A bit let down considering we had been told we would be paying only $35,00… read entire review
Bogota
photo by: caliphil007