If there’s one very important fact you need to understand about the venerable citizens of Bogotá, it is that they like to party. Lucky enough for them, and us, there is an endless bounty of Bogotá events that take place throughout the year – and, what’s more, you’ll find that a lot of them are free.
The massive Simon Bolivar Park gets a workout: years ago, someone decided to have a Rock festival there, and it was such a huge success that other genres soon got in on the act – Jazz in the Park, Hip-hop in the Park, Salsa in the Park, You-Name-It-They’ve-Got-It in the Park. Corferias, Bogotá’s premier convention centre, stays busy as well, hosting some of the most notable Bogotá events such as Fashion Week, the International Art Fair, and a flower festival. Foodies, get your tastebuds up to Virrey Park at the end of July to tuck into a smorgasbord of the best food the city has to offer; and film buffs, you better get along to the Film Festival in October.
It’s often not necessary to head anywhere in particular to find yourself in the middle of one of the legions of Bogota festivals, however, as many of the most popular events just happen everywhere. Depending on the time of the year, you could end up in the midst of a Gay Pride Parade, Independence Day shenanigans, or maybe just the biggest theatre festival in the world. And, of course, every Sunday is pretty much an event, anyway; as a lazy couple of million Bogotanos take to their bikes to meander down streets that are packed with traffic any other time. So, don’t worry that much; whatever enthusiasm you may have, Bogotá’s got it fairly comfortably covered.
The Iberoamerican Theatre Festival of Bogotá
NEXT EVENT 2014
Colombia is a bit theatrical, we’d admit. But, every two years, the entire Spanish-speaking world (and other worlds, too) descends onto this country’s capital and lets loose a veritable storm of all things pertaining to the performing arts – including drama, dance, circus, performance art, pantomime, and puppetry. That’s not an all-inclusive list, either.
The festival, now one of the biggest in the world, started in 1988. Fanny Mikey and Ramiro Osorio wanted to celebrate the 450 year anniversary of the foundation of Bogotá and created an event that sought to integrate the countries of Latin America and show their cultures to the world. What they gave birth to is now the biggest theatre festival in the world; and during the middle of March (the next one’s next year), their beloved Theatre takes over the entire city. Get amongst it!
Bogotá Gay Pride Parade
Having started in 1982 with only around 30 brave participants, this festival has grown up with Bogotá, and thrusts a strong and vibrant community into the limelight. It begins in the National Park, and then flaunts its fabulousness down Carrera 7.
Photo courtesy of: http://comunidad.laopiniondemalaga.es
Rock Al Parque
Bogota concerts don’t get any bigger than Rock Al Parque, when rock enthusiasts of all stripes descend upon Bogota’s massive Simon Bolivar Park to turn it into one gigantic, joyful moshpit. This is the biggest and loudest rock festival in South America; and so its schedule is always jam-packed with the best of local and international bands. It’s free, and packed with fervent fans of many different musical genres.
Entrance fee: Free
Additional Information: Belts and alcohol are not permitted into the event.
Bogota Film Festival
Promoting and celebrating the Colombian film industry, this festival screens over 200 award-winning films from Colombia and abroad. Films screen at various cinemas around Bogotá, the National Library, and special open-air cinema in the Botanic Gardens.
Entrance fee: COP$13,000