Azul Cafe: V.I.P
Probably the hippest cafe I've ever seen! Just being there makes you feel like a VIP! And if you are real VIP, you get to sit inside, which is even more impressing!
Chill atmosfere in open air with good service. Not the cheapest though!
Heibredo: one very cool place for a hot drink
You could easily spend your evenings having a few beers at one of the local restaurants and probably have a more down to earth authentic experience but the truth is there are lots of different types of places for nightlife in Bogota ranging from discos and salsa dance clubs to trendy cafes. Despite some of them being quite pricey, they are full of locals. The truth is there are a lot of well to do people in the country's capital. While I tend to stay away from such places it is sometimes nice to indulge yourself. You will pay a lot more for a given beverage but compared to drinking in a similar place back home, it's still a bargain. We saw a very cute little place while walking around Candelaria and noticed they had canelazo. We had been exposed to this hot alcoholic beverage in Quito a few years earlier and decided this looked like a nice place to have one.
Heibredo had a warm feel to it and with a Christmas tree in the corner, it was the perfect place to spend the day after New Years. There was a cozy fireplace and comfy couch to sit on. With low lighting, it was quite romantic. The canelazo was good size and strong. It is made of heated agua de panelo (sugar cane paste with water) and aguadiente (a licorice-based alcohol). It is perfect on a cool evening and great in front of a Christmas tree much like Gluehwein in Germany. It was 1300 COP or $6.50 for the two drinks. As perfect as the downstairs was we could not understand why everyone that came in went upstairs, leaving the cozy little spot entirely for us but on going up to use the restroom we discovered that the upstairs was great as well and quite busy. There were bigger tables low to the ground with cushions for people to sit on. We thought we might go back on our return to Bogota but wound up making our own canelazo back at the hostel and drinking it outside in our little courtyard which was very nice too.Related to:
- Food and Dining
- Beer Tasting
- Wine Tasting
Bogota Beer Company: Cool area
This was one of our first nightlife stops in Bogota and, of course, when I saw the name, I just had to try some local beers. The place is in one of the corners of the park itself (the grassy spot known as Parque 93) and has a cool atmosphere. They had American football on TV and the prices were high for Bogota, but the potential for good beer made it all worthwhile. Unfortunately, I can't say that the beers were anything to brag about, but the fact that they have micro brews here was just kinda cool. Of the few that I tried, I'd have to say that the Montserrate Roja was the best.
Zona Rosa - Calle 82: Zona Rosa
The area around Calle 82 is full of many good quality discos, stores, restaurants, bars, etc. This is the place to go to go out.
Dress Code: Men typically dress nice sweaters or striped cotton long sleeve shirts, untucked. Few wear jackets. Women typically dress sexy, mostly in low-cut tight jeans - very nice to look at :)
Teatro Colon: Opera, Theater
The Teatro Colon is located next door to the Hotel de la Opera in La Candelaria and has performances of opera, theater and symphony year-round. Most Fridays you can hear the local symphony orchestra (Orquesta Sinfónica de Colombia) play here. I've only seen the interior in pictures on the web, but it looks exquisite. The building was designed by an Italian architect and the theater opened in 1892. Guided tours are offered a few times per day for around $1.50. Students will show you the inside of the theater and give you some historical information in Spanish.
La T: Cocktails!
"La T" is a "t"-crossed street where you will find a bunch of nightclubs, bars and restaurants. For the fans, that's also where the Hard Rock cafe is located!
La T is the place to be for a night of fun and great cocktails!
Zona Rosa is nightclub area in town. Any cabbie in town will know where it is, and unless you know the town well enough, they will take you there the long way...making you pay more. From downtown, you shouldn't pay more than 7,000-8,000pesos.
Anyways, Zona Rosa is the main area of town that you can drink and dance 'till 8am, no questions asked...but this comes at a price. A very steep price, most all places here charge covercharge, what you pay will depend on how you look or what the doorman thinks of you. Once inside, you will again be ripped off...this is the most expensive part of town to drink in, expect to pay 7,000-10,000 for a beer.
The people that tend to frequent Zona Rosa bars are upperclass rich kids. This is also were most foreigners who are only in town for a short while tend to go as well, as they don't know any better.
That being said, Gotica is a good option for Zona Rosa. It is a big disco with three separate dance floors and DJ's. On the ground floor there are two dance floors with their own DJ's and style of music (separated by a wall). Also there is an upstairs dance floor with it's own DJ, as well as a lounge area on the other side of upstairs. They usually closed at 7 or 8am, though I only went there about 3 times.Related to:
- Budget Travel
Café Negro: Literary Café and Great Music
Bogotá has some of Colombia's best nightlife. Zona Rosa boats the city's most expensive restaurants and nightclubs but it lacks the bohemian charm of La Candelaria. This is where you'll find many traditional places and also eclectic cafés and bars visited by locals, students and artists. Though the area is not the safest late at night (be sure to grab a taxi, especially if you are alone) don't let this dissuade you from soaking up the atmosphere and experiencing the magic of Bogota's nightlife.
I was accompanied by my local friend Iván who wanted to bring me to a place I would like. We walked the streets of La Candelaria looking for something special. Some places changed since his last visit and then he thought of Café Negro. This literary café has two floors with wooden chairs and tables, and a sofa. Most of the walls are painted white with black music notes, others are red. Glass-cases with books hang from the walls. All the books are on sale and you can borrow magazines. Music and lighting create a relaxed atmosphere.
We had delicious canelazo while having a conversation and enjoying the ambience of the place. Time always passes quickly when you have fun. But I had to catch a night bus to Medellín so Iván accompanied me to Platypus. I took a taxi to the bus terminal and he went to a party. At that moment I would rather join him. After all, it was Friday night! :)Related to:
- Beer Tasting
- Wine Tasting
- Arts and Culture
candelaria and parque de la 93: places to stroll
La Candelaria is a good place to stroll about until 10 PM - there are plenty of people in the streets and you'll feel safe. take in the beautiful lit-up colonial buildings. After 10 PM everyone "takes off", and the few peeple around look very dodgy, so it's best to leave immediately, and in a taxi.
Less interesting to stroll about, but safe until late at night, it's the Parque de la 93... with all the clubs and restaurants located around this park, you'll encounter no problems at all. However there are no interesting buildings to be seen.
Dress Code: Dressed, please. Bogota, due to its high elevation DOESget very cold at night. A sweater and a jacket are necessary.
Rock n Jazz Casino: Feeling lucky?
I'm not into gambling, but my buddy Jonathan was feeling lucky one night and he enjoys playing Blackjack so we stopped here for a very brief and unsuccessful try at the tables. It's amazing how quickly a person can lose $200 (like, in about 3 minutes!), but later in the trip, Jonathan avenged himself and won his money back. Security is tight here and there's not much of a scene inside. Just some slots, games and table to play the usual . . . craps, blackjack, poker, etc.
El (or Le, I can't remember) Gaston is a great place to start the night. The owner (ex-french foreign legion ex-pat) had just recently started serving food, french cuisine, when I returned to Bogota in March. So it is now possible to have supper and start drinking in the same place.
The beer is a reasonable price, unlike Zona Rosa. My brand, Brava, going for 2,000pesos a bottle, the other local brands being 1,500pesos. There is an occasional DJ (also ex-french army part time ex-pat, whom used to live in the appartment upstairs from me), who plays mostly electronic and chill-out music. Lots of it is from France.
Open till 3am or when the last person leaves before that.Related to:
- Beer Tasting
- Budget Travel
Siam is the place you will end up if you are going on a hardcore drinking binge and don't want to pay the exhorbitant prices of Zona Rosa. Prices are about 1,500-2,000pesos a beer.
It is a nightclub of sorts, in an old rundown converted home. It has a covered dancefloor and a large courtyard with a tree, named Monsieur Bucheron, whom likes to be hugged. There is an upstairs area too, mostly reserved for people doing drugs, but all are welcome. There is a hole in the floor upstairs, and the lighting is poor, so beware.
They put on occasional 'parties' hosting international DJ's.
Usually opens by 2am, sometimes later. Goes until whenever.Related to:
- Budget Travel
- Beer Tasting
El Toque is a smaller place, but also a very popular place. It can be, and I personally found it to be, very offputting at first due to it being extremely crowded, particularily Friday and Saturday nights. Also the stools are high off the ground and can be fairly difficult to get onto when you're borracho . But after I while I came to love this place and got to know the people working there and made friends with many of the regulars.
Closes at 3am...then everybody goes to Siam.Related to:
- Budget Travel
- Beer Tasting
Bogota is not only the political capital of the country, but also the cultural capital as well and in La Candelaria it shows. There are several great small-scale theatres in La Candelaria, occupying re-fitted older colonial homes.
The shows are of a wide range of styles and will appeal to a wide range of audiences. I found many peices to be very 'politically charged' and talking of certain 'risky' social issues. All in all, I very much enjoyed the theatre during my stay in Bogota.
They give out free monthly guides to what's playing when. Just pop by the theatre during the day and pick up a copy.
My two favorites were:
Teatro de la Candelaria
calle 12 # 2-59
calle 13 # 2-44Related to:
- Budget Travel
- Theater Travel
North of Bogotá: Zona T / 93's Park at North
Malls, casinos, money exchange, car rentals, bars, pubs, transmilenio, taxi, bus station, and economical prated furnished apartments on the surroundings.
Located to the north of the city between calles 79 and 85 and carreras 11 and 15, near Andino Mall. At night the sector becomes the most exclusive meeting, fun and party place in Bogotá. Discotheques, bars and restaurants are ideal places for dancing, friendly encounters, romantic dates or business meetings.
Commercial stores offer all type of decorative objects, antiques, brand and informal clothes and artisan jewelry. Facing Andino Mall parking lot exit the “T Zone”, brick paved pedestrian passage housing restaurants, cafés, stores and jewelries with attractive exhibition windows and a mobile gallery exhibiting photographs. The next carrera is the Fashion Street or Sun Street, where great Colombian designers have their shops.
PARK OF 93
Calles 93 A to 93 B between Carrera 11A and 13
Located in one of the most exclusive areas of the city, is northern youngsters’ preferred park.
A great variety of restaurants, Internet cafes, bars and ice cream parlors concentrate in the area.
As many other parks in the city, serves as several cultural events scenario in the course of the year. At night the area is filled with noise and music. Park restaurants menus offer food from all over the world.
The park has green areas, native species arborization such as urapanes, Sabana rubber trees and was palm trees from Quindío; child games and water fountain.
Near this commercial center, between calles 111 and 116 and carrera 7th an important business center developed with modern buildings housing prestigious multinational companies, banks, high tech buisness and some hotels. The sector absorbed former Usaquén town urban center. You will find a great variety of restaurants and places dedicated to artisan object sale. On 116 Santa Fe Foundation Clinic and several medical centers and laboratories in the surroundings.
The historical Centre has been the main character and witness all along city life. The area concentrates most historical and cultural attractions of interest, mainly dating from colonial times. Such valuable wealth includes numerous churches, museums, homes, plazas, small squares, and buildings of great architectural and urban interest. Traditionally, public power branches of the Nation and the city have their offices in that area. La Candelaria neighborhood, located to the east of Historical Downtown, preserves the remembrance of a small village, and was large metropolis cradle. Narrow steep streets, large houses with colonial roofs and eaves, were the cradle and home of Creole Spanish aristocracy.
The sector currently concentrates museums housing rich historical and cultural legacy. Also Shrines of interest such as Our Lady or Carmen Sanctuary and San Ignacio Church, cultural scenarios such as Colon Theatre, and theatre groups, i.e. La Candelaria, Teatro Libre and Teatro Taller de Colombia. Cultural life is intense; streets, plazas and small squares provide space for multiple artistic and popular tradition exhibitions.
Universities, such as Externado de Colombia, La Salle, Gran Colombia, Autonomous, Libre and El Rosario; cultural entities as Gilberto Alzate Avendaño and Rafael Pombo Foundations, La Candelaria Corporation, Silva Poetry Home, Colombian Anthropology and History Institute, among many other; artistic workshops, antiquaries and religious articles stores abound.
Historical Downtown institutional centre, located in the lower area, is characterized by grouping buildings used for different national government and Capital District agencies: the Presidency and Congress of the Republic, the Supreme Court of Justice and Mayor Township of Bogotá. Such buildings geographical centre, with the exception of Nariño Palace or Colombian Presidents House is Bolivar Plaza.
The sector groups religious buildings of great interest such as the Primate Cathedral of Colombia and Sagrario Chapel located on Bolívar Plaza, Conception Church and San Juan de Dios Church. Important museums for instance 20th of July Home Museum also known as the Flowerpot House in the northeast corner of the Plaza, and XIX century museums, Popular Arts and Traditions, Francisco José de Caldas Home Museum, Santa Clara Church Museum.Related to:
- Casino and Gambling
- Budget Travel
- School Holidays
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