Colombia’s capital even inspired a global revolution when it launched its much-imitated ciclovia, when miles of city streets are liberated each week to make way for cyclists, joggers and roller-bladers. Here are five reasons why Bogotanos just love to bike:
Bogota is a city of around eight million people, but with cycle paths covering more than 360km (more than 220 miles) of the city’s surface it’s never been easier for its citizens to make their own way around the city. Almost 84,000 people use Bogota’s cycle route network every day, cutting their costs and reducing pollution at the same time.
Colombia’s capital pretty much invented the concept of ciclovia (cycle way). Cars are banned from 120km of city roads every Sunday morning, from 7am to 2pm, when two million city residents take to the streets to cycle, jog and roller blade. Bogota has had a ciclovia since the 1970s and it has been copied by cities across the world. There are now Bogota-inspired weekly ciclovias in Ecuador, Argentina, Chile, Mexico and Peru.
If you are in Bogota on a Sunday, enjoy our ciclovía! Go to this express guide and discover bogota.
More than half of all Bogota households own at least one bicycle but for those without two-wheeled transport, it’s easy to borrow a bike. One of the most popular place to borrow a city bike is in Virrey Park, in the north of the city, where 50 bicycles are available for hire under the Pedelea Por Bogota scheme. Other sites include Santander Park (Cr 7 # 15) and Plaza Bolivar (Cr 7 # 11) City bikes are rented free to pre-registered users.
With all that cycling, it’s only natural that Bogota has some of the coolest bike stores on the continent. Popular shops include Cornelia, Cletta, Bike House, Bike Tech, Trotar and Strongman. Not only do these stores stock the usual range of bikes, safety and technical cycling gear, many also sell bespoke bicycles and trendy accessories.
If that wasn’t enough, Bogota is at the forefront of cycle apps. The “Biko” app uses GPS to track cyclists’ routes and gives them a social network to share tips such as safe spots to park bikes, police monitoring and potential hazards. Users collect “bike miles” to exchange for goods and services. The app, designed to promote cycling and create a community, was launched in Bogota and is now attracting interest across the world.
Want to be at the forefront of cycle friendly cities? Come to the land of Sabrosura.
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