Bogota, Colombia

Photo Credit: Alejandro Islas Photograph AC

Bogota is the largest city and capital of Colombia. Located at an altitude of 8,661 feet above sea level, it is the world’s third highest capital city, behind two other South American capitals, La Paz , Bolivia and Quito, Ecuador. It was founded on August 6, 1538, by Gonzalo Jimenez de Quesada and was named "Santa Fe de Bacato." The city soon became a major seat of Spanish power in the New World. It gained its independence, along with the rest of Colombia (then called New Granada), in 1819 with the help of the famous South American liberator Simon Bolivar.

Today, Bogota is the financial and cultural center of Colombia . Although it was once considered one of the most dangerous cities in the world, the government has suceeded in reducing crime. It is a major banking, transportation, and business hub and is home to the Colombian Stock Market. It is the region’s marketing and processing center for coffee, cacao, and tobacco. Bogota is famous for its beautiful colonial architecture, most notably the cathedral and the churches of San Ignacio and San Francisco.


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