Whether you plan to visit Bogota or are thinking about making it your permanent home, you’ll eventfully want to do some shopping. This can be quite the adventure in Colombia’s capital city. While there are countless places to make a great purchase, below are the five best markets in the city.
La Casona del Museo and Galería Artesanal de Colombia
You’ll find this market by the Gold Museum. It’s actually two markets (as the name makes clear). Due to their location downtown, right in the thick of things, La Casona del Museo and Galería Artesanal de Colombia are very popular with tourists. While this means there are some amazing products for sale, it also guarantees you’ll be paying a lot more for them.
You should still negotiate with the sellers, but don’t expect that they’ll go as low as the prices you’d find elsewhere. Also, this isn’t just the stall owners taking advantage of tourists. These businessmen and women have to pay a higher premium for their locations, too.
Monserrate Mountain Market
This may not be the official name of the market, but this is where you’ll find it. Just jump in a cable car and it’s at the summit.
Once again, though, because tourists love this part of Bogota, expect slightly higher prices on anything you buy. Still, if you’ve never taken the trip to the top of Monserrate Mountain, it’s worth paying a few extra dollars for a souvenir or two.
Centro Artesanal Plaza Bolivar
You’ll find this market just a couple of blocks from Plaza de Bolivar. This market will feature far more businesspeople ready to go back and forth with you on price. Depending on what you’re trying to buy, you should usually have no problem bringing the price down by 20%.
One tip from the pros here: if you don’t speak Spanish, use the calculator on your phone to show your offers. You can go back and forth with a seller this way until you’re both happy.
Centro Colombiano de Artesanias
A little over a dozen blocks are handed over to pedestrians who are interested in shopping this market. This gives ample room for Colombia’s famous street food, but you’ll also see street performers and artists taking up this space, too.
You can find this one right across the street from the Colombia Linda market and Teatro Eliécer Gaitán (though it’s about a block up).
Once again, the bargaining at this market will be much easier, especially because you also have so many more options to consider if one vendor’s price is simply higher than you want to go (or that’s at least what you want them to think).
Finally, Usaquén Market is right next to the Hacienda Santa Barbara shopping mall. While most of the items here are more expensive than the ones you’ll find at the other markets, this one also features numerous local artists who create one-of-a-kind pieces. On Sundays, there is also a flea market held nearby.
You can’t beat the fun, excitement and possible deals of Colombian markets. These five in Bogota will be your best bet for all three.