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Getting to Villa de Leyva from Bogota

LAST UPDATED: May 19, 2018 @ 1:56 pm

It’s already dark by the time we reach Villa de Leyva. The cobblestone streets are deserted, the lighting, eerie.

Our journey to this sleepy colonial town in Colombia has been way too long.

Villa de Leyva by Night

It started early in the morning, on what was essentially our first day in Colombia. The day of travel that is more often than not, the most confusing of any trip. Navigating a new language, geography and social customs all at once is always challenging, even if your hubby speaks perfect Italian (which should theoretically help more than it has so far…) ๐Ÿ˜‰


We’ve walked with our packs for at least 10 minutes, and despite getting directions to the Bogota bus terminal, from the kind lady at our hotel, we seem to be a little lost. Perhaps it’s because we received the directions in Spanish? It all seemed so clear at the time…

Our bags are getting heavier, and the sun is steadily marching higher into the sky, so we decide to hop in a taxi. We think we’ve been clear about our intended destination, but it’s not until 4 hours later, that we realize we’ve been scammed.


It turns out there are 2 bus separate bus terminals in Bogota.

Theย Terminal de Transporte, where our oh-so-clever taxi driver has dropped us off, and the Terminal del Norte, which is where we actually want to go. Terminal de Norte was a 5 minute drive from where we got in the taxi, and the main terminal – 20. We have no idea about this, of course…until we drive by the Terminal del Norte, on our bus, 4 hours later. Grrr >.<

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We realize that we’ve wasted 3 hours sitting in the bus terminal in Bogota, so that our taxi driver could make an extra $4. Super frustrating…but such is the life of travelers in a new city.

All of this is forgotten as we careen through high mountain passes, and as I timidly peek through the windows at steep cliffs, unguarded by rails, I am happy that we are on a Libertadores bus.

They seem somehow more solid and substantial than the mini-buses that seem to rocket past us with a death wish. The scenery is spectacular though, and it’s easy to lose yourself in the absolute beauty of Colombian nature.

We made it to Villa de Leyva

In all, it takes us 9 hours to reach Villa de Leyva: 1 hour to get to the bus station, 3 hours of waiting at the Terminal de Transporte and 5 hours on the Libertadores bus.

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