Latest Posts

Close encounters with hummingbirds at the Observatorio de Colibries

July 16, 2018 // 0 Comments

I entered Victoria Lizarralde’s garden, also known as the Observatorio de Colibries (Hummingbird Observatory), and felt a ‘whoosh’ and the unmistakeable ‘buzz’ of a hummingbird whizzing past my ear. On a cool, damp Sunday morning I had joined a small tour group led by Andes Ecotours and travelled 45 minutes up into the mountains from Bogotá. We headed for [more]

Bogota’s La Macarena neighborhood

July 10, 2018 // 0 Comments

For my second post in a series about Bogota’s neighborhoods, I’m writing about the colourful La Macarena. When you’re doing your research about where to live in Bogota, La Macarena is one of those neighborhoods which will come up again and again, along with Chapinero, Rosales, Chico and Parque de la 93. Just up the hill from Bogota’s Centro [more]

Quinta Camacho neighborhood

May 22, 2018 // 3 Comments

I’ve decided to add a section to the blog devoted exclusively to Bogota’s neighborhoods. In each post I’ll talk about what I like about each neighborhood and what they have to offer. I’m starting off the series with my favorite neighborhood: Quinta Camacho. Quinta Camacho neighborhood: Between Calle 67 and Calle 72, and Carrera 7 and Avenida [more]

Things to do in Bogotá when it’s raining

May 15, 2018 // 9 Comments

It wouldn’t be an exaggeration to state that Bogotá has received more than its fair share of rain over the last month or two. The wettest times of year in the Colombian Andean region are, roughly, from April to June and September to November (though it’s not an exact science!). During these months it’s common for the day to start out sunny and [more]

Bogotanos: Humans of Bogotá

April 16, 2018 // 1 Comment

It is often said that you can learn much about a place by getting to know the local people. The natives of some big world cities have a reputation for being cold and unfriendly. This is not the case in Bogotá. In most cases, Bogotanos or rolos will try to be helpful. The main difficulty will be the language barrier if you don’t speak Spanish, as not even [more]

The essential things you need to know about healthcare in Colombia

April 3, 2018 // 6 Comments

I wanted to share a post on my experience of healthcare in Colombia so far, but in this post I’ll just give a non-expert summary of how things work here and the different insurance options. Please note that this is just what I have picked up in the four and half years I’ve lived here, and any opinions I give are based purely on my personal experience. [more]

Solo female travel in Latin America: my experiences and why you should go for it!

March 1, 2018 // 3 Comments

About this time last year, I found out that three women writers I know in Bogotá would be compiling a book of tales about solo female travel in Latin America. Although I didn’t submit a tale of my own, it did make me start to reminisce about my own solo travel experiences as a young woman. I thought I’d write this post to encourage women who feel nervous [more]

Volunteering in Bogotá

February 9, 2018 // 1 Comment

Volunteering in Bogotá could be a great way to meet new people, interact with the locals and get a better feel for local culture. I have heard about a number of volunteer opportunities in Bogotá but when I’ve looked at their websites it’s not always clear whether you need to speak Spanish to participate. Here are a few volunteer opportunities in and [more]

The 10 most popular How to Bogotá posts

February 7, 2018 // 3 Comments

One way in which I gage what to blog about on How to Bogotá nowadays is by looking at my site stats and seeing which posts are getting most views. This gives me an idea of which topics people are most interested in. All of the posts below rank well for certain Bogotá-related search terms in Google, so I assume that the posts contain information that people often [more]

Beat culture shock: 10 things to do after moving to Bogota

January 31, 2018 // 2 Comments

Moving to Bogota (or any other place that’s far from home) is a big step for anybody. I first moved to Bogota in October 2013, and I’ve since discovered there are many different reasons why people choose to move here. Oftentimes, as in my case, it’s to join a Colombian boyfriend or girlfriend. Sometimes it’s a case of the ‘trailing [more]

A weekend in Villa de Leyva

January 18, 2018 // 4 Comments

Back in July 2017 we decided to go to Villa de Leyva in Boyacá for a long weekend. A trip to this beautiful little colonial town set in the picturesque countryside of Boyacá is one of those trips everyone visiting Bogota will try to make if they have time. That said, it took me four years to make the journey there! But it was well worth the wait! How to get to [more]

Colombia currency: the Colombian peso

January 12, 2018 // 4 Comments

I had a request recently from someone who wanted me to write a blog post about Colombia’s currency. They had recently arrived in Bogota and had exchanged some dollars for Colombian pesos. At the time of writing, there were about 3,000 pesos to the dollar. This means that if you wanted to change $1,000 US dollars, you’d receive about $3 million pesos. All [more]

Uber in Bogota: the big debate!

January 11, 2018 // 12 Comments

I regularly use Uber in Bogota, and am a big fan. However, wherever Uber arrives in the world, it seems to bring controversy along with it! Licensed taxi drivers claim that Uber drivers are unskilled, steal their customers and avoid paying costs that taxi owners have to pay. In Bogota, taxi drivers refer to Uber drivers as ‘pirates’. and have been known [more]

Visiting Chingaza National Park in Colombia

January 8, 2018 // 6 Comments

I’d wanted to visit Chingaza National Park since I arrived in Colombia four years ago. A guy on my CELTA course at the British Council waxed lyrical about it for weeks after he visited it with his family, and this piqued my curiosity. Unfortunately though, we don’t have a car and weren’t sure how to organise a guided visit to the park. So I was [more]

Where to drink specialty coffee in Bogota

December 9, 2017 // 6 Comments

Now that I’ve been on a coffee farm tour and on the Flavors of Bogota coffee shop tour, I thought I’d write a post on my favourite coffee shops in Bogota. Specialty coffee is the finest quality of coffee, cultivated, roasted and prepared by experts to produce the best cup of coffee you’ve ever tasted. I’ve always been more of a tea-drinker [more]

Bogota’s Museum of Contemporary Art

December 9, 2017 // 0 Comments

I’m a big art-lover, as you’ll see from my Instagram! One of the best things about living in Bogota is being able to see art on the streets everyday. The Bogota Graffiti Tour takes people on a walk through the centre of Bogota and the Candelaria, and introduces the work of Bogota’s most renowned street artists. The Candelaria has numerous museums [more]

Vegetarian restaurants in Bogota

December 1, 2017 // 5 Comments

I’ve heard a few people say that it’s not easy being a vegetarian in Colombia, as meat is such a big part of the Colombian diet. Indeed, I’ve also heard some Colombians say that a meal without any meat is not a proper meal! I’m not a vegetarian but I’m not a big meat-eater either. So eating meat a few times a week in Bogota, when in [more]

The best Colombian coffee farm tour near Bogota

August 14, 2017 // 0 Comments

As a Brit through and through, it should come as no surprise that I’m a proud tea-drinker. But even I have to admit that there’s nothing like farm fresh Colombian coffee! So when Chantelle from Andes Ecotours invited me to join her on their coffee farm tour, I jumped at the chance! I had actually been on this tour once before in 2013, but it has changed a lot [more]

Learning to love my moustache in Bogotá

July 17, 2017 // 1 Comment

In Colombia, money generally goes further than it does back home. After I moved to Bogotá in 2013, I started going to beauty salons more often. They place a lot of importance on physical appearance in Colombia – it’s totally normal for a Colombian man to get a manicure, for example – so it’s not uncommon to find three or four hair and beauty salons on [more]

Useful contacts if you’re moving to Colombia

April 20, 2017 // 5 Comments

I’m always really pleased when my readers get in touch with me via the blog or leave a comment. People have asked me so many different questions about living in and moving to Colombia, and while I’m happy to help when I can, I don’t always have the right expertise. The most common questions relate to private Spanish teachers, Colombian visas, how [more]

23 great places to eat in Bogota

February 13, 2017 // 8 Comments

I always joke that Bogotá is where I ‘unlearned’ how to cook. It is so easy to get food delivered, or to go out and eat somewhere for a reasonable price, that I’ve become extremely lazy in the kitchen. My intention is not to encourage readers to adopt my bad habits (!) but to give you some ideas about places to eat in Bogota when you’re just not in the [more]

What to wear in Bogota

February 9, 2017 // 7 Comments

One cool Bogota afternoon you will find yourself walking among the quaint rugged buildings of the Candelaria, the smell of coffee wafting out of a nearby café and filling your nose. You look up to see where it is coming from, and almost stumble into a couple of (unmistakable!) tourists wearing shorts, vest tops and flip flops, standing in the middle of the street, [more]

8 great markets in Bogotá – and where to find the best prices!

July 23, 2016 // 10 Comments

There are a number of markets in Bogotá which are worth visiting, and if you’ll be staying in Bogotá for any length of time, you’ll definitely want to do some souvenir shopping at some point, either for gifts to take home to your family and friends, or because your family and friends are visiting you and THEY want to buy souvenirs! Or you might have [more]

10 Bogotá anecdotes which made me Bogo-smart!

November 3, 2015 // 4 Comments

When I first arrived in Bogotá, the experience of living abroad wasn’t new to me; I had lived in Latin America before. But I wasn’t yet ‘Bogo-smart’..! What I really needed was a Bogotá for Dummies guide! Fast-forward two years and I am now a well-weathered expat/Bogotana; so what pearls of wisdom do I have to impart? Well, I thought [more]

Colombia Blogs

October 18, 2015 // 8 Comments

There are some really great Colombia-based bloggers out there, whose blogs I regularly visit. Even though this blog is about Bogotá, many people who move to Bogotá initially might want to move to another part of Colombia eventually. So here are some Colombia blogs that I recommend you take a look at: bananaskinflipflops.com – Banana Skin Flip Flops was my [more]

Learn Spanish in Bogotá

June 1, 2015 // 16 Comments

Many people ask me what advice I would give to people thinking of moving to Bogotá; among other things, I always say – learn Spanish… or at least learn enough to be able to get by. There aren’t many people in Colombia who speak good English – and certainly not in supermarkets, hospitals, cafés and other places where you will want to be able [more]

Salaries, Tax and Jobs in Bogota

December 2, 2014 // 44 Comments

A common question I get asked is how easy it is when it comes to finding jobs in Bogota. Salaries can vary a lot, so if you’re considering moving here, you’ll definitely want an idea of how much you could potentially be earning once you find a job. You may even decide that remote working is the best option, as these jobs often pay in dollars or euros. [more]

10 tips for taking a taxi in Bogota

December 1, 2014 // 28 Comments

Taking a taxi in Bogota can be a bit of an ‘adventure’ to say the least; an un-seatbelted adventure which can leave you silently praying for your life, as most taxis do not have functioning seat-belts for the back seats. If you’re taking a taxi in Bogota, keep in mind the following tips, which include common scams and typical taxi driver behaviour: 1. Always [more]

Cost of Living in Bogota

November 17, 2014 // 9 Comments

This post was updated in July 2016. Due to fluctuating exchange rates, I have changed the amounts to reflect the current cost of living in Bogota in Colombian pesos. Please note that these figures are based on living in an estrato 4 building, and will increase significantly for estratos 5 and 6. For more information on estratos, have a look at my post on Where to [more]

Teaching English in Bogota

May 4, 2014 // 28 Comments

The easiest way for an English speaker to make money in Colombia is by teaching English; and teaching English in Bogota has become a big business. Everyone seems to be setting up a ‘School of English’ nowadays; needless to say therefore, that there is a huge variation in quality, working conditions and pay. If you don’t have a CELTA certificate [more]

Bogota neighborhoods: where to live in Bogota

March 4, 2014 // 17 Comments

When I was contemplating my move to Colombia, I started checking out the different Bogota neighborhoods and the cost of rent to see what I could get for my money. The problem was that I had no idea which areas were nice, safe and well-located, or which I should avoid. Now that I’ve been living here for a while, I feel qualified to provide the low-down of areas [more]

How to find a place to live: Bogota apartments

January 30, 2014 // 5 Comments

Whether you are looking for long-term or short-term accommodation in Bogota, there are a number of websites advertising Bogota apartments for rent. You might also find my other post about the neighbourhoods and where to live in Bogotá useful. Long-term accommodation Renting long-term normally means committing to at least a one year contract. I’ve yet to come [more]

My experience of the healthcare culture in Colombia

April 10, 2018 // 5 Comments

I recently wrote a post outlining how EPS coverage and private healthcare in Colombia works, but I thought I’d save my anecdotes for a separate post. My overall opinion is that Colombia has good healthcare options for those who can afford it. But as the culture around healthcare can vary from country to country, I thought it might be helpful to relate some of [more]
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