Today is our last day in Bogota, on the one hand we can’t believe we’ve stayed here almost a week and on the other we wish we could spend a few more days. We’ve really enjoyed Bogota, it is a modern city with public transportation, parks, cafes and plenty to do.
Perhaps we’re enamored because its so different than Central America, or because we have great CS hosts, but either way its been a great start to South America. I can honestly say that its the first city we’ve been to since March where I could see myself living.
There’s been a lot to do here, we’ve hit a lot of museums but the one worth highlighting is the Museo de Oro (Gold Museum). An incredible collection of Pre-Columbian gold objects, the museum is really a masterpiece. Collections of religious and ritual items, corporal decorations, and an incredible statue depicting a religious procession thought to have inspired the story of El Dorado, the legend of the golden king whom the conquistadors sought for but never found. Even more amazing than the shear number of objects were the intricate designs made in gold. The miniature offerings for the Gods, often depictions of daily life from objects in the home to humans, were breathtaking. We even found a mini hammock, which unfortunately we could not add to our ever growing hammock collection.
Bogota doesn’t lack for the strange and bizarre either. Outside of Bogota we stumbled upon another of the supposed “seven” wonders of the world, the Salt Cathedral. Now you may ask yourself- what is a salt cathedral. Well… it’s actually a cathedral carved into a huge salt deposit 200m underground. What else would you do with a big hole in the ground, right? While it was neat to be in an entire complex created of salt, it was a bit strange. I’ll let the pictures tell the rest of the story, but it is worth noting that the tour guide admitted to us that it had fallen to the “eighth” wonder of the world. No surprise really.
Living here in Bogota for a week has been wonderful. The air is generally crisp like a perfect fall or spring day, chicken buses of Central America have been replaced by a modern bus system, and the terrain and vibrant city life remind us of San Fransisco without the ocean, complete with a traveling Andy Warhol exhibit. What a great start to South America!