Touring Bogota – Aug. 27, 2011

Every time that I’d been to Bogota, I was in transit to another part of the country.  I’d never actually done any tourist activities there.  On Aug. 25th, I made my way back to Bogota on another 10+ hour bus ride from Aguachica to pick up Anna , who had been a friend of mine since Peace Corps Zambia.  Having her around was a great reason to finally see the tourist sites in Bogota.  Truth be told, by this time I really wasn’t interested to do anymore touring because I was perfectly content visiting with my Colombian friends with Aguachica.  I could’ve remained there indefinitely.
My friends in Bogota, Nancy and Ernesto, graciously let us stay at their place.  Nancy was worried that maybe we wouldn’t be comfortable sleeping on the floor at her place, but we were perfectly fine with it.  I was really excited that we were able to stay with them because I wanted Anna to experience the warmth hospitality that Colombia is so famous for.  Plus, Ernesto makes the best coffee (the secret ingredient is panela, or sugarcane) ever and Nancy makes really good hot chocolate!
After picking up Anna from the airport on the 26th, Nancy made huevos con maizorca and some freshly squeezed lulu juice for breakfast, as well as the hot chocolate that I love.  Afterwards, Anna and I made our way via bus to La Candelaria, the historic part of Bogota.  Our goals were to take the cable car up to Montserrat, a park on top of the ridge that overlooks Bogota, and then to walk around the main plaza.

From left to right: Nancy, Ernesto and Anna

Anna and I overlooking Bogota from the lofty heights of Montserrat.

Anna and I at La Catedral Primada in La Candelaria, Bogota.

The statue at the center of Plaza de Bolivar

After a long day of walking around the La Candelaria, Anna and I made our way back to Suba, the neighborhood where Nancy and Ernesto live.  Since I couldn’t bring Nancy and Ernesto the U.S., I thought I’d take them out to a dinner at a prominent American restaurant chain, T.G.I.Friday’s for a proper steak and, my favorite, buffalo wings.  I also invited my friend Daniela, a Colombian-American who I’d met last year, too.
The next day Anna and I were off to Villa de Leiva.  Anna was impressed with the spacious leg-room and comfort of the bus were on.  I had the same positive impression during my first time last year on the same bus to Villa de Leiva.

Buses in Colombia are more comfortable than planes. You also see more of the country, listen to local music and have the opportunity to meet locals.