Los Cerros Orientales (Eastern Hills): an oasis of magic and incomparable natural beauty – Things to Do and See in Bogotá, Colombia – Must see attractions in Bogotá, Colombia
A few minutes away from the city, it is possible to find a natural oasis no other capital in the world possesses. Bogota’s Cerros Orientales: a wonderful offer of flora and fauna, and the best setting for hiking and being in touch with nature.
Covering an area of 14,170 hectares from Usaquen in the north, to San Cristobal, in the south, they feature eight outstanding viewpoints at the edge of the hills, where amazing views of the city await visitors. The places found along every path have been given names as suggestive as the magic they offer Bosque del Silencio (The Forest of Silence), Alto de Ballenas (Whales heights), Quebrada la Vieja (Old Woman Creek), Las Antenas (The Antennas), Roca de los Andes (The Rock of the Andes), Cuchilla Serrana (The Sierra Blade), La Cumbrera. Today they are coveted destinations for hikers and mountain bikers.
At present, foundations like Sal Si Puedes are devoted to promoting interest for the preservation ofthe Eastern hills among capital city dwellers and tourists. Their programming includes hiking trips with more than 20 routes accessed by different paths, from where it is possible to find shortcuts to the city The offerto visit these ecological destinations is open throughout the year at costs ranging from 6 thousand and 25 thousand Colombian pesos for people of all ages.
Some of the paths include climbing up to 3,200 meters above sea level, as in La Cumbrera moors, near calle 72, where the Museo del Paramo (Museum of the Moors) Park is located. Here, several types of Andean forests and local vegetation can be found, some of them high altitude plants on the verge of extinction. The large variety of ecosystems can be appreciated, as well as beautiful landscapes, lagoons and creeks like Arzobispo, runnin down calle 39 in the city center.
The institutions organizing these trips divide hikers into groups according to the degree of difficulty of the different paths. The Tourism Police joins hikers and guides to grant total security during these excursions. Above all, these hiking trips aim at educating and providing recreation for children and adults alike on the importance of knowing, valuing and taking care of this invaluable forest reserve.
If you wish to undertake this ecological adventure, do not forget to take comfortable clothes (long sleeves, a hat or cap to protect yourself from sunrays, sneakers or books, a rain cape or light poncho in case of rain). A small rucksack to take food, water in a plastic container and some snacks to nibble along the way are a must, as there are no shops along the paths. The rucksack can also serve to keep the wrappings, bottles and other pieces of litter, as one important aim is to observe nature without harming it.
Long Trails in Eastern Hills (Los Cerros Orientales):
- Usaquen-Patios-Parque National
- Parque Nacional-San Luis-Usaquen
- Parque Nacional-San Cristobal sur
- Parque Nacional-Areneras Monserrate-la Viga-San Cristobal sur
- San Cristobal sur-cerro La Viga-Parque National
- Calle 72-La Viga-San Cristobal sur
- Calle 72-La Vieja creek-Parque National
- Calle 72-San Cristobal sur
Short Trails in Eastern Hills (Los Cerros Orientales):
- Usaquen-Las Antenas-Usaquen Usaquen-La Capilla (Patios)
- Calle 72-Los Patios (on the way to La Calera)
- Parque Nacional-calle 72
- Parque Nacional-San Cristobal
- Calle 72-San Cristobal
- San Cristobal sur-Parque National
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