Guatavita Lake is in the form of a perfect circle and is the site of a centuries-old treasure hunt. There are different opinions about the origins of the lake as well as the reason for its rare circular shape. Some say it is a volcanic crater whereas others believe it is the result of a meteorite impact. What is known for sure is that the lake was once an important ceremonial site for the ancient Muisca civilization. In one ritual, the chief of the Muisca tribe used to coat himself in gold dust and then bathe in the lake while throwing offerings of gold and precious stones into the water. It was this ritual that gave rise to the legend of El Dorado.
Zipaquira Salt Cathedral and Guatavita TourBOOK THIS TRIP
From £124 - 9 Hours
Visit 2 exciting destinations during this Bogota day tour!
During this unique Bogota day tour, we will visit the beautiful Zipaquira Salt Cathedral and Lake Guatavita. There are lots of things to do in Bogota, Colombia, but not many experiences in the area can compete with the stunning architecture of the Salt Cathedral and the fascinating history of Lake Guatavita.
First, we will explore Lake Guatavita and you will learn about the rituals performed by the ancient Muisca people that gave rise to the legend of El Dorado. Immerse yourself in the lake's mystic atmosphere while soaking in the beautiful surroundings of majestic mountains and bright-green pastures. Then, we will go to Zipaquira to visit the spectacular Salt Cathedral built inside the extensive caves of an old salt mine. This cathedral is a true testimony to the miners' faith in a higher power and one of the most notable achievements of Colombian architecture. Your expert guide will explain the symbolism found around every corner.
Departure Time: 8 am Tuesday - Sunday
EXPERIENCE TYPE History & Culture
Departure Time: 8 am
We will start this Bogota day tour by heading to Lake Guatavita. The peaceful lake, located about 2 hours by car from Bogota, is in the form of a perfect circle and is the site of a centuries-old treasure hunt. At the lake you walk up to the rim of the crater from where you can see the extensive countryside of the Bogota Savannah and immerse in the mystic environment of the lake. After learning about the Muisca rituals and the Legend of El Dorado, we will head to Guatavita La Nueva.
Guatavita La Nueva lies only 15 minutes away from the Lake. During our visit there, we will learn more details about its history, legends and popular myths. You will also have some time to explore its beautiful cobble streets before heading to the Salt Cathedral of Zipaquira.
We will spend about 1.5 or 2 hours inside the Salt Cathedral. During our time in the cathedral, an expert guide will take you through the Stations of the Cross. At each station you will see a symbolic representation of events from Jesus' last journey before his crucifixion. At the end of this walk, we will come to the main dome and the three naves of the cathedral that are interconnected by a gigantic crack, which symbolises the birth and death of Christ. You will learn about Colombian culture, religion and architecture during this day tour. Once we finish our visit to the cathedral, we will head back to Bogota and drop you off at your hotel.
Finish Time: 5 pm
- Private transfer to and from the hotel
- Guided tour in English
- Traditional Colombian lunch
- Entrance to Zipaquira Cathedral and Guatavita Lake
- Day tour insurance
What's Not Included
- Any other personal expenses and tips
How to Book
If you wish to book this tour, please click on the yellow "Book Now" button, select the date, number of people, complete the details and go through a secured online payment platform.
If you have any question, please do not hesitate to contact us.