Villa de Leiva Travel Guide
Villa de Leyva main square
Villa de Leyva main square
Villa de Leiva
Museo Museo de Luis Alberto Acuña
Acuña was a shy and timid artist but rich in talent. He was born in 1904 in a small place in Santander of Colombia. He studied in Bogota and later in Paris. He visited Germany and Spain where Pablo Picasso helped him find his personal style. In 1929 he returned to Colombia...
balconies of Villa de Leyva
Villa de Leyva may seem short on actual sights but one thing it has a plethora of are balconies. It is a town full of charming colonial architecture and one of the hallmark features of such buildings are gorgeous wooden balconies. A stroll through its cobblestone streets...
One of the more charming city parks in Villa de Leyva is Parque Ricaurte. It is across from Antonio Ricaurte's home of birth which now houses a museum full of furniture and weapons of the period. Ricaurte was renowned for his heroic deeds including blowing himself up to do...
Parque Narino is an unassuming public park that you would easily stroll past without much notice. It is named after Antonio Narino who was a large figure in Colombia's independence. His home is just up the street on Carerra 9 and is now a small museum of colonial artifacts...
Iglesia de San Augustin
Little Iglesia de San Augustin no longer is used for religious purposes and unfortunately is not open to the public. There is little information about the cute white-washed church that sits prettily behind Parque Ricaurte .
Pasteleria Francesca: not quite the taste of France
Pasteleria Francesca was a bit of a disappointment for us. We had read quite a bit about this “authentic” French bakery and were looking forward to a hot baguette and hopefully some decent coffee. It is a very cute little place with walls filled of old black and white photos...
Cafe Don Eloy: a nice place for a snack
Cafe Don Eloy was our stab at doing something inexpensive in Villa de Leyva when it came to eating. After a fairly expensive lunch at the Asadero Llana y Sabana, and a few rather awful beers at the upscale brewpub on the main square, we dropped in this little cafe for a...
Plaza Mayor by Night: much nicer at night, Plaza Mayor
While Plaza Mayor may seem a bit too unprotected during the midday sun, it comes to life in the evenings when locals congregate around the immense square to have a coffee or beer and share in animated conversations about their days. In this respect, it is not spoiled in the...
Mr. Coqui's Beer Factory: not quite the beer we had hoped for
While taking some photos of the main square while the sun went down on our first evening in town, we noticed Mr. Coqui's Beer Factory. Figuring it was just a pub, I popped my head in and noticed they did in fact have beers of their own, or at least not the regular...
not quite a hub
Villa de Leyva is certainly well on the gringo trail but not as convenient as nearby hub town Tunja which you pretty much have to go through to get here. Actually, there are a couple direct buses from Bogota but it's probably easiest to go via Tunja which is actually a great...
From Bogotá to Villa de Leyva
There are only two direct buses daily from Bogotá to Villa de Leyva. Alternativelly you can take a bus to Tunja (3,5 hours) which are very frequent. From Tunja minibuses run regularly and it takes about an hour. The road from Bogotá goes through pretty green valleys before...
Art and Handicraft Shops
Many artists have found their home in Villa de Leyva. There are dozens of handicraft shops as well as a number of artisan vendors. Various pieces of art and handicrafts can be found here, such as fine basketry, brightly coloured ceramics, jewellery, bags and ruanas (ponchos)...
Villa de Leyva is a leisurely place made for walking. You can stroll around charming cobblestone streets and plazas lined by quaint colonial buildings, listen to the sound of church bells and enjoy the lazy rythm of the day gone by. The streets around Plaza Mayor are filled...
Almojábanas and Arepas Boyacenses
Colombia is known for its breads and bakery products made of corn or corn flour. The recipes vary, depending on the region. Boyacá is especially famous for its almojábanas and arepas Boyacenses. I was recommended by my Colombian friends to try them in Villa de Leyva. To my...
packing my wife was the best move I ever made
Luggage and bags: The bus station is a bit of a walk from the town center and with cobblestone streets you can forget about wheeled luggage. We needed our backpacks for our recently completed trek in El Cocuy National Park but they also came in very handy here in Villa de Levya!
Clothing/Shoes/Weather Gear: This is a town made for walking with many gorgeous streets to romantically stroll down so bring comfortable shoes, which make the huge cobblestones a bit easier to walk on. Sunny Villa de Leyva is warm by day but cool by night so a jacket is another necessity.
Toiletries and Medical Supplies: Bring sunscreen, this is one sunny town.
Photo Equipment: You'll need a wide angle lens to capture Plaza Mayor and it's great for architectural shots too. A poloarizer is handy during the day but best light is early morning/evening when you won't need it. A tripod is another necessity if you want to capture the pretty down at night.
Camping/Beach/Outdoor Gear: There is a campground right in town but we opted for a splurge room after our ten days of trekking in El Cocuy National Park.
Miscellaneous: Thanks to D for not only for training for and doing the trek but also for being the perfect person to spend a romantic few days in Villa de Leyva.
Written Sep 17, 2010
- Related to:
- Romantic Travel and Honeymoons
a lamb in the lush
One of the crazier sights we found in Villa de Leyva was this small green area that was a peek in the pastoral surroundings of the colonial town. What made it especially odd was a lamb lumbering around in easily the most green patch of land in this otherwise very dry town.
Amazing romantic getaway
Villa de Leyva is a charming place. Amazing colonial architecture that remained untouched for the years, even being one of the most important places during the independence wars. History, architecture, and envolving great environement. Only a couple of hours away from the...
a proven contender in more civilized surroundings
I headed to a couple more places and none of them compared so went to discuss it with my wife who was patiently waiting in a small park, enjoying the sunny weather. She thought it was a bit too expensive too but we decided it was a worthy reward for our just completed...
a look without the pack
The small colonial town was the perfect place for a romantic getaway and on arriving, I set off to find a nice place for us to spend a few nights. When on a two-month trip with a limited budget, you can't exactly spare no expenses but there are times when you can splurge a...
time to change gears
Villa de Leyva does not have many sights per se but it is full of romantic cobblestone streets and perfect for strolls, especially early morning or evening.
We had been in Colombia for nearly three weeks and had stayed in an assortment of ramshackle rooms and truthfully had...
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