Where to Stay In Bogotá: The 3 Best Areas (Safe & Fun)

Thinking about a trip to Bogotá? You might be wondering: Where’s the best place to stay? Is it safe and fun?

Well, there are cool and safe places in Bogotá to stay. Chapinero, La Candelaria and Teusaquillo are the best areas.

I visited Bogotá and explored these areas extensively. They’re safe and have lots of fun things to see and do!

Key Takeaways

  • Chapinero is a wealthy neighborhood and is full of trendy restaurants, bars and public spaces.
  • Home of Colombian politics, La Candelaria has some significant cultural spots to visit and traditional markets.
  • Teusaquillo is a cultural center of Bogotá, with theatres and parks to visit.
  • Stay aware in the city, theft is an issue, especially in the evenings.
Map safe areas in Bogotá
Map of the safe areas in Bogotá

Chapinero – Best Area for families and a relaxing city break


Chapinero is largely considered the nicest neighborhood in Bogotá and is a great place to experience the city.

Chapinero has shopping malls, restaurants and nature for you to enjoy and explore.

Pros of Chapinero

  • As the safest neighborhood in Bogotá, Chapinero is the most stress-free area to stay in the city.
  • There’s a good amount and a variety of activities to do.
  • With several universities located in the area, there’s a young buzz and lively bars and restaurants.

Cons of Chapinero

  • Chapinero is the most expensive part of the city.
  • You still need to be wary of thefts at nighttime

What to Do and See in Chapinero

There is plenty to do in Chapinero and one of the main centers of the area is around Parque de la 93. In the park, you can relax in the day and if you feel like a refreshment, you can head to BBC Pub Parque 93. If you want to try some of the nation’s famous beers, this is the place.

Down the road from the park, El Mono Bandido is a bar that is set up for a good time, with an indoor beach and a ball pit, there’s no limit to the amount of fun you can have in this bar. The food menu is also great for an affordable price.

If you want to treat yourself with a souvenir, Chapinero has some great options. Casa Libreria Wilborada 1047 is a fantastic-looking old bookstore. Based on English architecture, you can spend time studying books of all genres and find some unique Colombian literature. The bookstore also has a coffee shop so you can fuel up while soaking up the tranquillity of the shop.

Centro Comercial Andino is another option if you have an itch to shop, but you’re not a bookworm. The shopping center has lots of famous designer brands so if you’re into fashion, this is the place for you.

If you’re hungry but running on a tight budget, La Grande Cantina Cevichera is a top option for food. Serving Peruvian and Latin food, the restaurant is really smart and has a unique feel.

To get out of the hustle and bustle of the city, Quebraba La Vieja is an option for hiking so you can get some fresh air. There are plenty of trails to walk on and some waterfalls to discover.

My Favourite Accommodations in Chapinero

  • Trip Monkey Chapinero:  A funky hostel in a trendy area of Chapinero, Trip Monkey has a laid-back atmosphere which can be hard to find in big cities. There’s a bar in the garden area so there’s good opportunities to be social. Prices for a single bed in a 4-bed dorm per night start at US$8.
  • Selina Chapinero Bogotá: a mid-range budget option that provides a spacious, well-organized and clean product. Selina Chapinero has a sophisticated restaurant bar and with standard room options starting at US$45 per night, you’ll be sure to get a good sleep. Breakfast is also available for only US$3.
  • HAB Hotel Bogotá: this option is for high-end budgets, but the hotel is a fantastic-looking building which includes a gym and brilliant service. The location is also close to bars and restaurants while remaining safe. Prices start at US$102 per night for a deluxe queen room

La Candelaria – Best for Sightseeing and Culture

bogota La Candelaria sreet
La Candelaria

La Candelaria has plenty of cultural areas with national significance containing some brilliant exhibits.

The area is also one of the oldest in Bogotá and has some great smaller buildings to explore such as independent restaurants and coffee shops.

Pros of La Candelaria

  • The area is the home to Colombia’s politics so there’s lots of museums to visit.
  • An abundance of coffee shops and small, cute restaurants.
  • The neighborhood is relatively close to Chapinero

Cons of La Candelaria

  • It can be dangerous to walk around this area late at night with frequent reports of thefts.
  • The area can get busy with traffic, and small street lanes can get congested.

What to Do and See in La Candelaria

National Capitol street
National Capitol on the right

The main public square that should be on your list of things to do is the Plaza de Bolívar.

Here you can view the Palacio de Justicia Alfonso Reyes Echandia, the Tabernacle Chapel, Bogotá’s town hall Palacio Liévano and the nation’s home of politics, the National Capitol.

A few roads outside La Candelaria is Bogotá’s premier museum, the Museo del Oro. The museum has several great exhibitions, but none more impressive than the Archaeological collection. You can learn all about the pre-Hispanic indigenous people who have worked with the metals in the museum for 2,500 years.

Colombia in general has fantastic coffee and Bogotá is no exception. One cozy coffee shop which is a must-visit is Café del Mercado. The café not only has outstanding coffee and food available, but has a youthful student vibe. It’s a great place to relax and recharge but also view some of the interesting buildings around.

If you’re a curious foodie, La Perseverancia Distrital Marketplace is a buzzing marketplace with loads of options for food and drink and has been featured on Netflix. Just be sure to bring cash as many places don’t accept cards.

However, to get a good feel of the city and soak in the atmosphere, take a walk down 2218 Carrera 7. The street is fully pedestrianised and in daylight hours, very safe.

One street which is full of character and expresses Bogotá at its best is Calle Bonita. The street has individually painted buildings and a vast selection of highly rated restaurants and bars providing great photo opportunities for Instagram.

My Favourite Accommodations in La Candelaria

  • Hostal R10: Hostal R10 has a great atmosphere and a classy interior. The hostel has a rooftop and the hostel makes the most of it, from yoga opportunities in the morning to sharing a few drinks with fellow backpackers, R10 has a great vibe. Prices start from US$10 per night for a bed in a 6-bed dorm.
  • Viajero Bogotá Hostel & Spa: Viajero is a hostel chain and while backpackers may seek out more independent hostels, Viajero provides a safe and quality standard. The rooftop bar and spa, which includes a pool and sauna make the hostel a great option. Prices start from US$15 a night in a 6-bed dorm. You can also book single-bed private rooms from US$36.
  • Palermo Home Bogotá & Art Gallery: On the outskirts of Santa Fe, this is a trendy up-market option for couples and families. The hotel is top-rated on booking.com and also provides a shared kitchen if you’d prefer to cook for yourself. Prices start at US$36 for a double room with options to add breakfast for just US$4

Teusaquillo – Best for Theatre and Public Spaces

Teusaquillo (Photo credits: Alejandro Forero Cuervo via CC BY 2.0 Deed)

Teusaquillo is a cool neighborhood and is famed for its theatre and home to Bogotá’s biggest park, the Parque Central Simón Bolivar.

However, it’s important to stay around the tourist locations named as there are safety concerns off the main streets.

Pros of Teusaquillo

  • Brilliant places to enjoy the good weather where there are occasionally live events in the parks.
  • Even if the weather is poor, indoor options are available.
  • The home of theatre and Bogota’s biggest football stadium.

Cons of Teusaquillo

  • The area’s biggest attractions are in Spanish so Teusaquillo struggles to be accessible for people who exclusively speak English
  • There is a safety risk, especially at night.

What to Do and See in Teusaquillo

One of the main attractions in Teusaquillo is Estadio El Campín. In a continent obsessed with fútbol, football stadiums are a part of the way of life and visiting Bogotá’s premier ground is a great way to absorb the city’s culture.

For those who enjoy theatre, Casa Ensamble is an option to watch independent and original shows. The plays aim to address the major issues facing Colombia today.

The Plaza de Eventos Simón Bolívar is part of the main park in the city and is well worth visiting especially if you can catch a live event. In the park, there is also an outdoor workout station which can be great if you’re on a backpacking trip and need a workout.

Bogotá’s Public Transport

Bogotá has an extensive bus network for getting around the city called TransMilenio.

The bus is a great way to travel through the city as Bogotá has a reputation for bad traffic and buses have their own traffic lanes. The bus system is considered safe, but pickpockets operate from time to time.

Away from the bus service, the city can be quite difficult to travel through, with long travel times for seemingly small journeys. Uber and Cabify remain the best options for traveling at dark.

Where Not to Stay in Bogota

  • Areas south of La María are considered dangerous and have some of the highest crime rates in the city. Streets Carrera 10 and Calle 6 are worth keeping vigilant on, especially at dark.
  • In the north of the city, Santa Carolina has high crime rates along Avenida 45 and Calle 170.
  • If you’re looking at a budget option by staying outside of Chapinero, it’s a bad idea as Alcazares has high levels of crime along its main road.

In general, the rule of thumb is to travel in taxis during dark hours and stick to the areas recommended in this article.


Bogotá is a really interesting city and if you are thinking about going, there’s a lot to see. However, undoubtedly there are some safety risks. At night, know exactly where you want to go and take taxis to get there. Ubers and Cabify are the best.

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