What follows will be a breakdown of women, nightlife, food, quality of life, cost of living, levels of English etc. Basically, everything you’d want to know before traveling to Bogota as a single man!
But, before I get into all that, I thought I’d take a few lines (no pun intended…) to list some information about Colombia’s capital:
It has an altitude of 8,660 feet
It’s known as the “Athens of South America”
It’s one of Latin America’s largest cities (over 8 million inhabitants)
Its gold museum boasts the largest pre-Hispanic gold collection in the world
It has the largest network of bicycle routes in South America
With the fun-facts out of the way, let’s get into the good stuff!
Is Bogota a good place to travel for a single man?
Bogota, Colombia – Woman Rating 4.5/5
Depending on what circles you run in, you may be familiar with Colombia for one of the following six reasons:
Gabriel Garcia Marquez
Acting on the assumption that you didn’t come here to learn about precious stones or magical realism, I’m going to focus my attention on number six.
I can say with confidence – and from experience – that girls in Colombia are among the best in Latin America. In this respect, the country’s reputation is well-earned.
As the capital city, Bogota is a perfect jumping off point to experience fine Colombian women. It’s a melting pot of sorts, as folks from all over the country come here to find work or study. You’ll see girls of all different types in the capital. Black girls from the Caribbean and Pacific coast, White girls from Antioquia, Indigenous girls from La Guajira and everything in between…if you’re lucky, maybe a combination of all three!
The mix won’t be quite as “exotic” as you’ll find in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, but there is certainly enough variety in Bogota for men of all tastes and dispositions.
Since it’s difficult to give an impression of how attractive rolas (i.e. women from Bogota) are without context, here’s how I’d rank them in comparison to other major Latin American cities. Hopefully, this will give those who have traveled in the region a better idea of what to expect, and those who haven’t a better idea of where to visit:
Girls from Bogota are more attractive than girls from Mexico City
Girls from Bogota are more attractive than girls from Panama City
Girls from Bogota are more attractive than girls from Lima
Girls from Bogota are more attractive than girls from Santiago
Girls from Bogota are slightly more attractive than girls from Rio de Janeiro
Girls from Bogota have better bodies; girls from Buenos Aires have better faces
Girls from Bogota are more attractive than girls from Cali
Girls from Medellin are slightly more attractive than girls from Bogota
As far as Colombian cities go, I’d say that the ladies of Medellin have a slight edge on ladies from Bogota. However, due to its large foreign population, you’ll face increased competition and higher shields in the former. In my opinion, this makes Bogota a better choice, particularly if it’s your first time in the country.
You’ll find even less competition in Cali and, as a foreigner, you’ll have more of an “exotic factor”, but you’ll need to speak Spanish. In Bogota, you’ll be able to get by with only English – enough people speak it in the nicer areas of the city. In Cali, almost no one does.
Now, back to Bogota.
Meeting women here is straightforward. Nightlife is rather centralized (you’ll find most bars and clubs located in the “Zona T” district), and the attitude toward casual sex is much more liberal than in smaller Colombian cities.
Here are three bars worth checking out in Bogota:
Hotel V Bar
If P4P is more your scene, then the district of Santa Fe is your spot. You’ll want to keep your wits about you around here, though. It’s not the safest area.
Bogota, Colombia – Cost of Living Rating 4.5/5
Bogota offers the best value-for-money out of any major Latin American city. Nowhere else south of the border will you find top quality nightlife, reasonably priced accommodation and decent infrastructure at such a low cost.
It’s cheaper than all the cities in Latin America of comparable size, including Mexico City, Sao Paulo, Rio de Janeiro, Buenos Aires, Lima, and Santiago. If you’re looking for a bargain place to party or relax in Latin America while being surrounded by beautiful women, there is no better country than Colombia.
A foreigner could get by in this city for as little as $1200.00 USD a month. Of course, to get the most out of Bogota, I’d suggest having a bit more – $1800.000+ would be ideal.
You can rent an apartment in a decent area for $500.00-$1000.00 USD per month (not Zona T, mind you; that will run you $1000.00+), a full meal can be had for $5.00 USD, a beer in a bar will be from $2.00-$5.00 USD. Fresh fruit and street food will be $1.00-$2.00 USD. Groceries will be around the same price as in the US. Taxis and Ubers, cell phone plans and gym memberships are all very reasonable.
One downside associated with the cost of living in Bogota is the fact that most bars and clubs charge cover to enter. Sometimes it’s as little as $5.00 USD, but at fancier places it will be $10.00 USD+. If you go out a lot, this will put a dent in your budget.
That said, Bogota is still an incredible deal by Latin American standards.
Bogota, Colombia – Quality of Life Rating 3.5/5
In terms of quality of life, Bogota ranks below other Latin American cities. First, the weather here is bad. The city sees a lot of rain and gets cold in winter (sometimes as cold as 5 degrees Celsius (40 degrees Fahrenheit)). It’s also unpredictable. It may be sunny and clear one minute and raining the next. If you’re looking for warmer temperatures, you’re better off in Medellin.
Another factor is the traffic. Don’t plan on getting anywhere fast in Bogota because the traffic is among the worst in Latin America. More traffic means more pollution, so if exhaust fumes bother you, you might find yourself choked up in Bogota. It’s not quite as bad as Mexico City, but it’s close.
English levels are adequate in the more affluent areas among people aged 40-and-under. Most folks in this demographic will at least have basic comprehension and communication abilities. As is the case with most Latin American cities, English levels drop off significantly in the lower/middle class neighborhoods.
You can survive here with only English, but if you plan on doing anything more complicated than ordering food at a restaurant or a drink at a bar, you will need some basic Spanish.
Next, the food. I’ve yet to meet any non-Colombian that enjoys Colombian food. For the most part, it’s bland and uninspiring. After a few weeks of eating at Colombian restaurants, I guarantee that you’ll be Googling recipes to make in your apartment instead. And, while the city does offer a respectable number of international dining options, they aren’t cheap.
Finally, safety. This is Bogota’s biggest flaw. The security situation here is something that shouldn’t be taken lightly. You can reduce your chances of being a victim by staying in safer neighborhoods such as Parque 93 or Zona T, but wherever you find yourself in this city, crime is not far behind. I personally know two people that have been drugged with scopolamine and robbed, and two others that were victims of a street robbery. All these incidences occurred in supposedly “safe” areas.
You can’t let your guard down in Bogota. It’s difficult to feel at-ease. Even walking around during the day, you get the sense that danger is lurking.
For some personal perspective, I felt much more secure walking the streets of Mexico City, Lima, Panama City, Buenos Aires and even Quito than I ever did in Bogota.
Still, if you take the necessary precautions (no flashy attire, don’t walk alone at night, take secure taxis/Ubers, always watch your drink) your time in Bogota is likely to be trouble-free.
But, as previously mentioned, Bogota does offer excellent nightlife, stunning women and an affordable cost of living.
You take the good with the bad.
Summary: Is Bogota Good For Single Men?
Cost of Living 4.5/5
Quality of Life 3.5/5
Bogota, Colombia – 12.5/15
To sum things up, yes, Bogota is a good destination if you are a single man.
Bogota is cheap, has some of the sexiest women in South America and arguably the best nightlife/party scene in Latin America. The trade-offs for enjoying these things will be bad weather and traffic, high crime and lackluster cuisine. As a single man, you’ll have to think how important the latter is to you to determine whether or not the juice is worth the squeeze.
For me personally, the pros outweigh the cons; Bogota remains one of my favorite Latin American destinations, and I don’t see that changing anytime soon (you can probably guess where my values are aligned).
And that about does it for this location review. I hope I’ve clarified any questions or concerns you may have had about Bogota; I encourage you to make the trip down!
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Thanks for listening,