Home Travel in Colombia My top 3 most beautiful parks in Bogotá + 6 more parks and walking routes
What are the most beautiful parks in Bogotá

My top 3 most beautiful parks in Bogotá + 6 more parks and walking routes

by Sabine
Languages / Talen

Do you want to escape the crowds in Bogotá? Travel off the beaten path and get to know Bogotá differently? Do you want to read a book in the grass? Then visit the city’s most beautiful and fun parks. Especially if you are staying in La Candelaria, green is not a color you will encounter much. Fortunately, Colombia’s capital has a lot to offer when it comes to parks. Therefore, in this article you will read my top 3 most beautiful parks in Bogotá. Find 6 more parks well worth visiting. And I share 2 ready-to-use walking routes through Bogotá along the parks. Including practical tips. Are you ready? Discover Bogotá!

My top 3 most beautiful parks in Bogotá: go off the beaten path

Not surprisingly, for 2 of my 3 favorite parks in Bogotá, you have to go off the beaten path. Parks that are not known to tourists but are incredibly beautiful. Which one? Here you can read my top 3.

1. Parque Virgilio Barco

I found out quite late that this park existed at all. Nowhere is it mentioned that Parque Virgilio Barco is so beautiful. I also never see foreigners there (and I visit often), so I suspect that even the well-known guidebooks have not yet discovered this park in Bogotá.

The most beautiful park in Bogotá

As far as I am concerned, Parque Virgilio Barco is the most beautiful park in Bogotá. How lucky I am to live within walking distance.

Both the park and the library (see below) exist since 2001. The park is connected by a bridge to Bogotá’s most famous park, Parque Simón Bolívar (number 4 in this article).

In Parque Virgilio Barco you will find many hiking trails, benches to sit on, beautiful views of the mountains, palm trees and lots of grass for picnicking. When the weather is nice, this is a good place to watch the sunset. The park is very well maintained and great for hiking.

The park is especially busy on Sundays, but never as busy as parks such as Parque 93 and Parque Simón Bolívar.

Find Parque Virgilio Barco here on the map.


Visit an extraordinary library in Bogotá

In the middle of Virgilio Barco park you will find one of Bogotá’s most famous public libraries. Here you can walk right in. Not only to borrow books or read in peace, but this is also a good place to go to work with your laptop (and a nice view). There are quiet rooms where you can sit. So not suitable for when you have meetings. Whether there is wifi I’m not sure, so make sure you have Internet on your phone.

Find the library on the map here. At this website you will find more information and opening hours.


And be sure to check out this 1-minute video and see how beautiful this park is:


2. La Esmeralda

La Esmeralda is a typical Bogotan neighborhood in Teusaquillo. Here won’t find high buildings, but beautiful typical Bogotan houses and many parks. The many parks in this neighborhood make it a wonderful place to stroll through. There are benches to sit, play equipment for children and many sports facilities. Such as tennis courts, volleyball and soccer fields.


The parks in La Esmeralda

My favorite park in La Esmeralda is Parque La Esmeralda, here on the map.

Here is a very small farm with chickens and rabbits. You can find these here. Along the farmhouse is a walking path, this leads you past the Jardín Utópico. A wonderful ecological and cultural project of the municipality. Be sure to take a look. This part of the park looks just like a forest. Walk along the tall trees and get the feeling you are far away from the city.

On the other side of La Esmeralda you will find Parque Urbanización La Esmeralda. Here on the map. This park is slightly larger, and also stunningly beautiful. From this park you have the most beautiful views of Bogotá’s mountains.


Tips for a hike

My advice would be to walk through all of Esmeralda. For example, start here. Visit the first park, the little garden and farmhouse, then continue walking to this point. From there you visit the second park.

Want something to eat or drink? On this route you will find small typical Colombian stores and bakeries. For example, visit the bakery Milhojas y Merengones. You can find this one here. I come here often and is a nice little place. Be sure to order a milhoja, which is a typical Colombian cake and very tasty. Note that you can only pay by contact here.

La Esmeralda is way off the beaten path; no tourists come here. It is a very peaceful neighborhood where you will find tranquility. Something that is quite difficult in Bogotá, so if you are looking for peace and quiet this is a good place.


3. Jardín Botánico: the botanical gardens in Bogotá

Looking for unusual trees, plants and flowers in Bogotá? Peace and quiet in the busy city? A safe place to walk around? Then be sure to visit the botanical garden.

The Jardín Botánico is an oasis of peace in the middle of the city. You can easily spend a few hours walking around here, sitting on benches, lying in the grass and having a drink at the little restaurant De La Trocha. A nice place to sit on the terrace and enjoy coffee, chocolate milk, a cake or something else delicious.

For the botanical gardens you have to pay an entrance fee. Find current prices and opening hours here. There is only one entrance, which you can find here.


6 Parks in Bogotá worth visiting

Besides my top 3, there are many more parks in Bogotá. These 6 parks are all fun and worth visiting.


4. The Simón Bolívar Park in Bogotá.

The Parque Simón Bolívar is Bogotá’s largest and most famous park. A forest with a lake you can walk around. In Simón Bolívar, you can do all kinds of things. Hiking, running (there are special trails for runners), boating on the lake, picnicking, biking, playing soccer, pitching your tent (during the day) and much more.

There are also many playgrounds for children. And there is even a small sandy beach. However, swimming is not recommended with the cold climate in Bogotá.

Since I live about around the corner, I come here regularly. I usually take a walk of about 1.5 hours through the park. Delicious on the Saturday morning. This is perfectly possible, as you will find some 16 kilometers of hiking trails.

Are you hungry or thirsty? There are several stalls in the park to buy food and drinks. Bring cash for this purpose.

There are sometimes events in Parque Simón Bolívar. Like concerts, the start of the Bogotá Half Marathon and sporting events.


Practical information

You can find Simón Bolívar Park on the map here. The park is open every day between 6AM and 6PM.

There are several entrances to the park, so it doesn’t matter very much which way you come from. Would you like to combine Parque Simón Bolívar with Parque Virgilio Barco? Here you will find the bridge between the two parks.


5. Parque de los Novios

Near all the parks mentioned above you will find another park: Parque de los Novios. In other words, the park of lovers, or the bride and groom.

Parque de los Novios is a lot smaller and quieter than Parque Simón Bolívar. You have a lake, hiking trails, bike paths and playgrounds for children. A nice park to walk through and unwind.

Find the park on the map here. It is open every day from 6AM to 6PM.


6. Parque 93: park and restaurants

From Teusaquillo, the district in which all of the above parks are located, we head north to Bogotá. This richer part of the city has many parks, most of them surrounded by restaurants.

Parque de la 93 is one such park. Located in El Chicó you will find one of the best neighborhoods for eating out in Bogotá. Actually, the Park 93 is more like a big lawn with some trees, but a very nice place to walk through, sit in the grass and eat at one of the adjacent restaurants. Ideal to visit during lunch or in the evening.

In the park you will also find a playground for children, and there are many tables with chairs where you can sit. Because the park is located in a neighborhood where many embassies and hotels are located, you will encounter more expats and tourists here.

Here you can find Parque 93 on the map.



7. Parque El Virrey

A little to the south you will find Parque El Virrey. Located in a popular and more expensive neighborhood to find your hotel or apartment. El Virrey is a beautiful and large park where you can walk, and encounter all kinds of things. Near El Virrey you will also find many restaurants, and from here you can easily walk to Zona T and the Andino shopping mall. One of the best places for shopping in Bogotá.

You get to El Virrey easily with the Transmilenio.

Parque Virrey can be found on the map here.

Parque Lineal El Virrey

Parque Virrey actually begins from the séptima, with a linear park that leads you along a small river to the large park El Virrey. With this bus route through Bogotá you will pass by the starting point of this park at carrera 7, approximately here.

Linear Park is a beautiful green strip where you can walk, run and bike. However, robberies are sometimes reported here. The place is a lot quieter than Virrey Park itself and therefore there is more risk of robbery. Never walk this in the evening and if no one else is on the route, it’s perhaps better to skip it.

When I still lived in El Chicó, I often visited this park. I then walked the stretch from carrera 11 to Parque Virrey, which walk begins here. There it is slightly busier than on the séptima side. And therefore safer.



8. Parque del Chicó

A little further north you will find Parque del Chicó. A beautiful park in which the beautiful Museo de “El Chicó is located. That museum is worth a visit, but so is the park itself. Although it’s right on the busy carrera 7, you notice pretty little of that. The park is beautifully laid out, there is a pond, beautiful trees and lots of peace and quiet.

Sometimes there are private events in the park and it is closed. Or public events, which are fun to attend.

Parque del Chicó can be perfectly combined with a visit to the beautiful and cozy center of Usaquén.

You can find Parque del Chicó here on the map.



9. ParkWay

Last but not least, the park remote from all the parks mentioned above: ParkWay. A long stretched park through the ParkWay neighborhood of the same name. A more alternative neighborhood in Bogotá, where you will find nice restaurants along the park. Like the Moroccan restaurant Marrakesh.

Walk through the park, enjoy the totally different atmosphere from the rest of Bogotá, have coffee in one of the coffee joints, eat the most delicious ice creams and have lunch or dinner in one of the many restaurants.

You can find ParkWay here on the map.


2 Walking routes in Bogotá through the parks

Bogotá is huge and moving yourself through the busy traffic can take a lot of time. Going from north to south and west to east is not done in 10 minutes. Therefore, it is a good idea to combine several sights in Bogotá.

Below I give two hiking routes you can follow. During the walk you will not only pass by the most beautiful parks, but also by other sights in the city. In addition, this is a very good way to get to know Bogotá better.

Walking route 1: Teusaquillo

Teusaquillo is a large neighborhood in Bogotá made up of smaller sectors. Because many large and beautiful parks can be found in this neighborhood, it is an ideal place for a walking tour in Bogotá. Also nice: it’s off the beaten path. On this hiking trail you will not easily meet another tourist or foreigners at all (except in the botanical garden). Maybe me, since I live here and like to take a walk 😉 Also, you won’t find the good restaurants in these neighborhoods that you do find at walking route 2. In Teusaquillo, you really eat local, which makes the experience extra fun.

On this route you will visit La Esmeralda, the botanical garden, Simón Bolívar Park, Parque Virgilio Barco and the library, ending at Parque de los Novios. In this order.


Duration of the walk

The hike takes over 1.5 hours, but of course you’ll spend longer during your visits to the parks. For example, you can easily count 1 to 2 hours for the botanical gardens, you will probably go somewhere to eat and drink during the walk, and you may find one of the parks so beautiful that you want to stay longer. I would set aside over half a day for this route.

Don’t have the time? Then choose one or two of the parks that appeal to you the most.


How do you get to the walking route?

Arrange a cab through an app and get dropped off at Parque la Esmeralda (here on the map). In any app for cabs, you can immediately type this as a destination.

From there you can walk everything. Look above for each park to see what there is to do and for tips on restaurants or eateries. You’ll find plenty of those along the way. I would in any case pay a visit to Milhojas y Merengones.

This walking route through Bogotá looks like this on the map:

Click on the map to enlarge.


Walking route 2: the beautiful north of Bogotá

The north of Bogotá looks very different from La Candelaria or Teusaquillo. Therefore, if you visit all these neighborhoods you will get a much better picture of the city.

The hiking trail from El Chicó is a lot shorter than the one through Teusaquillo. In just 40 minutes, you walk from the Museum of “El Chicó” via Parque 93 and Parque Virrey to Zona T.


The route

If you have the time you can start in Usaquén. Go there for breakfast or lunch, for example. It’s best to take a cab from there to Museo de “El Chicó,” or if you don’t have the time, start right there.

A visit to the museum is well worthwhile and takes about an hour. Walk around the park and enjoy the tranquility before walking through the beautiful El Chicó neighborhood to Parque 93. Ideal for resting in the grass or on one of the chairs. Or have lunch at one of the many fine restaurants around the park.

Just a 15-minute walk further, you already arrive at Parque Virrey.


The best bakery in Bogotá

Love delicious bread or pastries? Then make a stop along the way at one of Bogotá’s best bakeries: Brot. Eat the most delicious chocolate banana cake you’ve ever tasted, and have a coffee or tea with it. You can find Brot on the map here.

You can stop the walk at Parque Virrey, walk around there and take a cab back to your hotel. Or walk another 10 minutes further to Zona T. One of the neighborhoods in Bogotá where you’ll find good restaurants and the upscale Andino mall.

The walking route through northern Bogotá on the map:

Click on the map to enlarge.


Practical information: visit the parks in Bogotá

At what times do you visit the parks?

Most parks are always open, but that doesn’t mean it’s always safe. Visit the parks only during the day. Parque 93 and ParkWay are also great to visit in the evening. These are two of the best places for eating out in Bogotá. The botanical garden too when it is open in the evening.

The other parks that are open 24 hours a day are best visited during the day.

What about safety?

All the parks and areas mentioned in this article are fine to visit. However, always adhere to these safety recommendations for in Bogotá, wherever you go.

Never stop a cab on the street, no matter where you are. Always order a cab through an app, read how to do that here (tip 2).

Don’t walk down the street in the dark, especially if you don’t know your way around. I never do either myself, even if I only have to walk for 5 minutes I take a cab

Want to order a cab or view the route on your phone? Then don’t do this in the middle of the street, but walk into a store or eatery, or stand next to a security guard.

I myself live in Teusaquillo and I used to live in El Chicó. A world of difference, but both great neighborhoods!


Explore Colombia’s extraordinary capital on foot. What parks in Bogotá are on your list?

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