With almost 8 million inhabitants, Bogotá, Colombia’s capital district, is the country’s most populated city as well as the country’s most important political, financial, educational, and cultural city. Founded by conquistador Gonzalo Jimenez de Quesada on August 6, 1538 with the original name ‘Santa Fe,’ the Bogotá of Spanish, English, and Indian-mix influence today is a modern city with a bubbling cultural scene and vibrant social aspect; a striking city of contrasts that boasts futuristic towers and colonial churches, modern shopping plazas and open-air markets, high-rise apartments and shoddy shanty towns, ritzy districts and working-class barrios.
You will find a colorful variation of barrios or neighborhoods within the city: the modern architecture of Centro Internacional, and the neighboring bohemian Macarena district with its Plaza de Toros de Santamaría bullring. La Candelaria, the cobbled historic centre where Bogotá was created, claims an important architectural heritage and the world’s most impressive collection of Pre-Columbian art. Well-preserved colonial buildings house fantastic museums; mansions of grandeur built by native hands and financed by pillaged gold still stand; and restaurants, hotels and bars are dotted amid some-centuries-old homes, churches and convents. North of here finds the British architecture of the La Merced and Teusaquillo barrios, the main commercial and financial district, shopping and entertainment districts, and exclusive residential areas.
At once both hectic and peaceful, Bogotá is a place where old and new are existing in perfect harmony.