Villa de Leyva
Situated on the Sabana de Bogotá – Colombia’s highest plateau – the bustling capital of Bogotá boasts thriving cultural and culinary scenes as well as a wild nightlife. While lying just north of this pulsating metropolis is the contrastingly tranquil Villa de Leyva, one of Colombia’s most charming colonial towns and a must see on any holiday in Colombia.
Set against a backdrop of mountainous landscape, Villa de Leyva is a picturesque beauty of cobblestone streets, white-washed buildings and terracotta rooftops. Founded in 1572 and declared a national monument in 1954, Villa de Leyva is a colonial city frozen in time. The town’s usually relaxed pace picks up speed at the weekends with an influx of visitors from Bogotá, however the rest of the week Villa de Leyva remains a haven of serenity. For anyone with a sense of adventure, exploring the surrounding countryside on horseback or bicycle makes for an exciting daytrip when you travel in Colombia.
As lively as Villa de Leyva is serene, Bogotá is Colombia’s beating heart. Although in many ways a modern metropolis, Bogotá remains rich in historic and cultural charm; La Candelaria – the city’s historic centre – is brimming with meticulously preserved colonial buildings, handsome churches and numerous museums. The Gold Museum is a must-see for anyone with an interest in history or a love of glittering treasures. While in Colombia’s capital, you can spend your days roaming La Candelaria and your nights in one of Bogotá’s exquisite restaurants or embracing the infectious energy of Colombian dance. There’s something for all tastes in when you visit Colombia.
Anyone interested in a daytrip from bustling Bogotá, can visit the bewitching Zipaquirá Salt Cathedral. Originally constructed from an old salt mine, the underground cathedral is a feat of modern engineering. A stunningly surreal scene of salt rock carvings illuminated by changing lighting, the Zipaquirá Salt Cathedral is nothing short of hauntingly beautiful.