In Colombia's natural parks, you begin to truly understand the meaning of biodiversity. Seeing so many life forms is overwhelming.

Steinar Saeter

Norwegian

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Chingaza: Provider of Life

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Chingaza Park /Pic. http://www.flickr.com/photos/aztlek/3484624782/sizes/l/.

Chingaza Park /Pic. aztlek

The páramo of Chingaza, located on the Eastern branch of the Andes, only an hour away by land from Bogotá, between the Departments of Cundinamarca and Meta, is a veritable water factory. Frailejones and swamp mosses stand out among its flora and absorb up to 40 times their weight in water. The fauna in Chingaza is very beautiful: it is possible to observe animals as rare as the spectacled bear, deer, the páramo tapir, the puma, the Andean condor, and the gallito de roca (Rupicola peruviana).

From the minute the travel enters the park, he can admire the imposing landscape of páramo and Andean jungle: valleys, mountains, lakes, and waterfalls are the main attractions along the road. The Siecha and Buitrago lakes and the Monte Redondo sector are well worth a visit.

Characteristics

  • Chingaza provides 80% of Bogota’s high quality potable water, thus making the park an indispensable area for the life of the city’s inhabitants.
  • Mythological lakes, mountain vegetation and the famous frailejones may be admired.
  • The solitary melancholic atmospheres of the páramos are the park’s main attraction.

How to get there

An hour’s ride from Bogotá by the Bogotá-Fómeque or the Bogotá-La Calera-Piedras Gordas road; both are paved and in good condition.

Communities

Chingaza Park /Pic. http://www.flickr.com/photos/aztlek/3377493789/sizes/l/.

Chingaza Park /Pic. aztlek

This natural area was a ceremonial center and a sacred place for the Muisca Indians. At present it has a totally peasant population, with unique and authentic cultural patterns. The park staff offers one of the most modern camping sites in South America.

Flora

The park has quite a variety of important vegetable species. In the surroundings of Chingaza Lake, not less than 383 species of plants have been reported and it is estimated that the total flora of the park may be over 2,000 species. There are eight species of moss, ecological marvels that absorb up to 40 times their weight.

Fauna

A source of water and life

Spectacled bears, deer, Andean condors, are found in the park, as well as guans, el pumas, opossums, and toucans. In addition to six amphibian and six reptile species, approximately 180 bird species have been sighted in the area.

Activities

  • Trekking
  • Hiking
  • Camping
  • Photography
  • Observation of fauna and flora

Attractions

  • Siecha Lake, with archaeological remains of the Muisca culture
  • Chuza Dam
  • Monte Redondo sector
  • Suasie, Laguna Seca, and La Arboleda paths
  • Los Cóndores observation point
  • City: Bogotá D. C. (Financial, cultural, and academic center of the country)

Access to the park

Consult your travel agent or visit www.parquesnacionales.gov.co

Contact

Procolombia
Calle 28A Nº 13A-15 Piso 36
E-mail: info@colombia.travel

Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Tourism Fondo de Promoción Turistica PROCOLOMBIA

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