Posted by Karl Krause
Our second journal about our trip to one of the gay-friendliest countries in Southern America is about Colombia’s capital city, Bogotá. We have to admit, first thoughts that came to our minds when talking about Colombia and Bogotá have been about how dangerous the country and its capital is. But we are happy about how welcoming, friendly, and interesting Colombia’s capital city actually was!
Even one of our favorite actors in the show Modern Family is continuously playing with the stereotypes of Colombians who seem to like to eat a lot of meat, who seem to be involved in a mafia-like family constellation and have a super passionate and dramatic temper. After our first days in Cartagena and before our final Colombian destination Medellín, we would like to show you Bogotá’s highlights in our Gay Bogotá Travel Journal. Enjoy Bogotá’s gay-friendly side through a couple of men’s eyes.
Gay-friendly trip to Bogotá
After spending two weeks in Colombia, we can only confirm that some of the stereotypes are true. And some of them, well, let’s say, much less. And although many people connect Colombia with violence and drugs, the South American country is in progress of change which started already about 10 years ago. Don’t get us wrong, there is still much work to do. Especially in the poor neighborhoods and slums in the suburbs of the Colombian metropolises.
But we felt safe, welcome, and while being aware of what happened directly around us, we enjoyed our time in Bogotá. And of course, we got in touch with the local LGBTQ+ community in Bogotá that is supported and protected by law including marriage equality. Did you know, that Bogotá just elected its first female AND lesbian mayor who just married her girlfriend, a Colombian congresswoman? Enjoy our travel journal!
Monserrate – Best view over Bogotá on 3.070 m
And just another rainbow over South America! But not just somewhere… But at 3.070 meters above sea level overlooking the gigantic metropolis with almost 8 Billion inhabitants at Mount Monserrate with its garden and church reachable with the popular funicular. Get your tickets right at the base of the funicular and enjoy the short ride up the mountain where you can visit the chapel, a beautiful garden and with some lick, you’ll be able to see some mountain hummingbirds like we did! And don’t forget to take some stunning photos.
While taking photos and a cute little video (see below on our Instagram), we have been observed by a group of teenage girls who were laughing. Although it first looked like they were making fun of us, they were actually geeking out about our gay kisses. Just a few seconds later, they really wanted a selfie with us and even taking the flag to wave it themselves! Even our guide, Sebastian from the national tourism board and Sam, our tour operator were speechless and overwhelmed by this cute LGBTQ+ rainbow moment. Feeling proud and free above Colombia’s capital city Bogotá.
Waving at Claudia López at Plaza de Bolívar
From the viewing point on 3.070 meters down with the funicular and into the city. Our next stop was a visit to the famous Museo Botero del Banco de la Republica with its paintings of pretty voluminous people, animals, and things. Botero is a very popular artist in Colombia and known for its art around the world. We can not wait to see more of his art and sculptures in Medellín later on our Colombia trip. But now, it was time for lunch in a very typical Colombian place.
Halfway walking distance from the museum to the Plaza de Bolívar, the main square of Bogotá, we stopped in the tiny restaurant La Puerta Falsa to try Tamales (for meat-eater) and Colombian cheese dipped in hot chocolate (for vegetarians). It is a pretty tiny place though the Colombian atmosphere is something you have to experience. Anyways, be sure to be the first (or last) for lunch as its getting pretty crowded in there.
After we filled our stomaches, we walked downhill to the Plaza de Bolívar, Bogotá’s main square to see the Palace of Justice, the National Capitol and the Primary Cathedral of Bogotá as well as the Liévano Palace, seat of the mayor of Bogotá. We could almost wave at the new lesbian major, Claudia López.
Don’t forget to bring: Sun lotion, water
Gay-friendly Hotel: Hotel Estelar Parque de la 93
Gay-friendly Restaurants: Santa Fe Restaurante, La Puerta Falsa, Masa 70
Bogotá Gay neighborhood Chapinero
Before we are going to tell you more about Colombia’s nightlife, we explored the gay neighborhood Chapinero with the rainbow city sign, the rainbow and trans crosswalk and various shops and bars together with our tour guide. Just a tip we got from our guide: Be always aware of your surroundings and in case some strange people are starting to follow you, don’t hesitate and talk to one of the many security and police officers in the streets.
LGBTQ+ & Gay Nightlife in Bogotá plus Theatron
But that wasn’t all we experienced the LGBTQ+ community in Bogotá. At night, we made a gay night city tour with the handsome crew from The Queer Scout Colombia and the lovely local Drag Queen Mónica DiWhisky. Once we boarded the party bus, we were welcomed by the three handsome guys ready to show off the queer side of Bogotá. But first things first: Cheers on the night with one or two Vodka shots!
The tour brought us around the city to five gay bars and clubs ending with Halloween night as Theatron, the biggest LGBTQ+ and gay club in South America. A total amount of 14 dance floors spread out on several buildings offer party lovers of the LGBTQ+ community Latin rhythms (we practice our Salsa steps), electro sounds, and pop music. The local salsa rhythm definitely kept the upper hand while strippers dressed in harnesses went totally naked. Definitely a tip for a trip to Colombia!
Gay Bars at Gay neighborhood Chapinero we visited: Theatron, Anónimos Bar Gay
Don’t forget to bring: Good mood, ID or passport, tip for the crew