Magical Colombian views, Boyaca
South America3 days / May 2019
Highs & Lows
Close to Bogota , and good roads
Boyaca is one of the departments in Colombia. The most popular destination for tourists visiting Boyaca is Villa de Leyva but there is so much else to see and do.
Villa de Leyva has sort of a “Brooklyn vibe” and it’s about three hours from Bogota. By Brooklyn vibe, I mean that the town mostly feels like it has been taken over by young adults, great restaurants and lots of art. Depending on what you are looking for, it might be best to go on a weekend.
Nearby you can also visit the Pozos Azules (Blue Wells), blue-green artificial wells that you can swim in. They are incredible refreshing.
However, if hot springs are more up your alley then you have to go to the town of Paipa which is famous for its hot springs. Here you can spend the day or stay the night in some fancy hotels and enjoy the hot springs there. Hotel Hacienda El Salitre is expensive but you can get a day pass for 40.000 COP and spend the afternoon in the thermal pool and at the hotel. Paipa is also well known for its Paipa cheese which is must if you love cheese!
That being said, Boyaca is also the home of Colombia’s largest lake: Laguna de Tota. It’s so big you really do feel like you could be at the beach. Here you can rent jet skis, swim (although the water is pretty cold) or just spend the day by the water.
Finally, I’d recommend visiting one of Colombia’s páramos if you like the outdoors. Páramos only exist in Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, and Venezuela and 19% of Colombia’s páramos are in Boyaca.. They are a specific ecosystem that only exist between 3,000 and 4,800m above sea level. They start at the upper limit of cloud forests and are below the snow-line. They can get sort cold but it is mostly important to plan for rain. The plants in this ecosystem absorb water and release it into the soil. Their most famous plant is the frailejon which is so absorbant the leaves actually feel like sponges! Paramos aren’t hard to get to if you have a car and you can easily spend an afternoon up there hiking. I do recommend going earlier in the day if possible.
Q & A
What would you have changed?
To have more time in each destination
How was the food?
Amaranta cocina , villa de leiva
What tips would you give a friend?
Do the horse ride!
Bring sun block