Discover the charming colonial architecture and cobblestone streets of Villa De Leyva, one of Colombia’s magical villages, on an 11-hour day trip departing from Bogotá. Explore i fascinating history, how it’s been beautifully preserved and the variety of sights including Boyacá Bridge, El Infiernito (Litte hell), the blue ponds and Ráquira.
You will hardly find a place in Colombia that takes architectonic preservation as serious as Villa de Leyva. This small village located in the department of Boyacá and it’s a 3-hour drive from Bogotá. Spanish colonizers founded the village in 1572, visiting it gives the sensation of going back in time and in 1954 it was declared a national monument.
Get a closer look at the colonial history of Colombia’s and the fascinating towns outside of Bogotá on an 11-hour daytrip to Villa de Leyva. This mellow area’s exceptional architecture, great artisan craft shopping and historical richness offer the perfect combination.
Get started with a 7 am pickup at the hotel, proceeding north towards Villa de Leyva. Enjoy of a historical stop at the Boyacá Bridge, where the battle of Boyacá took place in the 19th century which helped secure Colombia’s independence from the Spaniards. Afterwards you’ll arrive to Villa de Leyva where you can take your time to admire the striking architecture of this area and learn the history around it thanks to a professional guide. Go to El Infiernito (Little Hell) and marvel in an ancient Muisca observatory and how they used to calculate the optimal time for harvest and then visit the blue pond, a water reservoir created by farmers. The water’s color has turned into a surprisingly vivid blue that contrasts beautifully with the arid vegetation.
Finish your visit to Villa de Leyva with an authentic Colombian lunch and (at your own expense) before proceeding to Raquirá, a small village nearby, famous for its amazing craftsmanship of woodworking, pottery, basketry and more. Have the opportunity to do some souvenir shopping and the then proceed to go back to Bogotá where you’ll be taken back to your hotel.
Optional: Change any of the activities above for the Casa de Terracota, which is a house made of clay measuring 500 m², considered the largest piece of pottery in the world. Designed and built by architect Octavio Mendoza, this house is baked in the same manner as pottery makers when they produce vases, dishes and other decorative objects.