Layover In Bogotá – The Ultimate Guide 2023
The Colombian capital of Bogotá combines gorgeous classical 19th-century architecture with the vibrant and sometimes anarchic spirit of this South American country. Bogotá has done a lot in recent years to be more welcoming to visitors, but the city is always an adventure.
If you find yourself on a Bogotá airport layover, there are better things to do than sit around an airport lounge. If you have enough time before your next connection, you can venture into the city and experience a little of what it has to offer.
While it’s only 15 km from Bogotá Airport to the center of the city, the journey will take anywhere from 40 to 60 minutes depending on traffic. The Transmilenio bus will take you to La Candeleria, or you could take a taxi. If you do take a taxi, make sure you take an officially licensed one from the airport. Picking up taxis on the streets of Bogotá is not recommended and can often be unsafe. The officially licensed taxis at the airport, however, are safe to use.
6 hour layover in Bogotá
Given the lack of transit infrastructure between the airport and the city, a six-hour Bogotá layover doesn’t give you a lot of time in the city. You’ll need at least an hour to get to the city, and another hour to get back to the airport. Add on the time you’ll need to get through customs and drop your bags at a Bogotá luggage locker, and that doesn’t leave a ton of time for exploring.
La Candelaria is the heart of Bogotá and is most likely where you’ll end up, however you make the journey from the airport. Many of the city’s most impressive buildings and tourist attractions are in this neighborhood, including the impressive cathedral. This ornate church is the spiritual heart of the city and has been since the 16th century. The current building dates back to 1807 and is a great place to spend an hour or so admiring the architecture and the serenity.
- A short layover doesn’t give you much time to see the city.
- Head to La Candeleria and visit the city’s cathedral.
- This impressive building is one of the grandest in the city and a great introduction to Bogotá.
8 hour layover in Bogotá
If you have eight hours to spend in Bogotá, you can afford to see a little more of the city. After dropping off your bags at a Bogotá luggage storage and visiting the cathedral, you can take a short walk to the Botero Museum. Fernando Botero was one of Columbia’s foremost artists, and many of his works are collected in this museum. The museum also holds work by Monet and Picasso, so it’s a great place to explore and learn more about art. Expect to spend an hour to two hours in the museum, depending on how big of an art fan you are.
- Take a short walk to the Botero Museum.
- This museum is dedicated to the work of one of Columbia’s foremost artists.
- It also holds work by famous European artists.
10 hour layover in Bogotá
A 10 hour layover in Bogotá gives you a little more time to explore. However, one of the city’s top attractions requires around four hours to do it justice, so you may need to skip the Botero Museum and instead devote more time to the Museum of Gold. This stunning attraction displays the golden treasure of Columbia’s indigenous civilizations and tells the story of the country’s mineral wealth, as well as the clash of civilizations that ensued when Europeans colonized South America. All in all, it’s a fascinating place to visit, and it’s no surprise that it’s one of the city’s main attractions. Give yourself plenty of time to explore the sprawling exhibits here and take it all in.
- You’ll need around four hours in the Museum of Gold.
- The museum shows off the treasure of Columbia’s indigenous people and explores their history.
- The museum is truly fascinating, so make sure you leave yourself enough time to fully explore it.
12 hour layover in Bogotá
Bogotá is known as a colorful city, and the ubiquitous street art is a big part of that. See some of the city’s best work with a street art tour that will take you safely around the busy streets to admire the work of local artists. Tours can last anywhere from two to five hours, so make sure you leave yourself enough time and choose a tour that matches your level of interest. And don’t forget to take plenty of photos of the impressive art.
- Take a street art tour to see some of Bogotá’s best graffiti.
- Tours can last from two to five hours, so choose one that matches the amount of time you have.
- You’ll get a new appreciation for Columbia’s artistic culture.
24 hour layover in Bogotá
An overnight layover in Bogotá means you can see other aspects of the city outside of its center. For instance, could climb the hill of Monserrate for incredible views of the city. There’s also a funicular that can take you to the top of the hill if you’d rather not walk. There’s a small church at the top, along with a couple of restaurants, but the view is the real attraction. That and the journey of climbing the hill itself.
A 24 hour long layover means you’ll need to find a place to stay and a luggage storage in Bogotá. But it also means you can enjoy the city’s nightlife. Visit Andres Carne de Res for a rowdy experience you won’t soon forget. This restaurant/dance hall/permanent carnival contains different theme rooms where you can party the night away and experience the vibrant side of Colombian culture.
The following day, you can enjoy a more peaceful side of the city at Parque Central Simon Bolívar. This is Bogotá’s main park, and offers tons of green space where you can take a stroll, as well as a boating lake where you can rent a boat and get out on the water. It’s a great way to relax and enjoy some tranquility before heading back to the airport for your connecting flight.
- Climb Monserrate for stunning views of the city.
- Spend the night at Andres Carne de Res for exciting food and music.
- Get some peace and quiet at Parque Central Simon Bolivar to prepare yourself for the next stage of your journey.