Bogota Gold Museum Tour
See the Gold Museum – Bogota with the kids!
*sponsored post from Impulse Travel*
At the top of the list of places to see when you visit Bogota, Colombia’s capital city is the Museo del Oro – Bogota Gold Museum.
Maybe gold doesn’t appeal to you that much and maybe museums are only ‘meh’ for you. Even so, you need to visit this museum! It is an absolute MUST see in Bogota, the capital of Colombia.
Why you should see the Gold museum – Bogota!
This is the largest display of gold in the world.
How often do you get a chance to see that? The Bogota gold museum is very modern and the displays are beautiful, but explanations are minimal. Adults would be able to skim the museum and get a cursory idea of the importance of gold, but kids will benefit from the explanation you get from a tour.
Examine the visual timeline.
I love the large timeline on display in this museum. My son is so interested in what is going on in the rest of the world at the same time as the gold on display in this museum and those numbers are hard to keep track of for me. This is the best timeline I’ve ever seen in a museum – so visual and easy to follow.
The interactive room was nice but without explanation, kids would find this impossible to appreciate. Kids would be utterly lost in this museum without guidance. Unless you are an expert on gold and/or Pre-Colombian uses of gold I highly recommend a tour!
Bogota Gold Museum Tour
The Educational Tourist partnered with Impulse Travel to create a fantastic tour of the Bogota Gold Museum just for kids!
Use the code: GOLDKIDS10 and get 10% off!
The tour makes the experience so easy!
Included in the Gold Museum Bogota tour:
Hanni Andrea Concha is an anthropologist and expert in Pre-Colombian gold
*Pick up and drop off at your hotel
You’ll be picked up at your hotel by a private driver and taken in an airconditioned van to the Bogota Gold Museum.
*Tickets to the Bogota Gold Museum
Tickets to the museum are included in the tour.
*Your own custom-made souvenir!
Kids will create a custom-made fabric bag – decorated with a Pre-Colombian design they choose.
We loved this part! We were taken to the aMano art workshop. The kids, and me, too, printed our favorite design on a fabric bag. This was so much fun and we love the souvenir!
Gold was important
Gold was very important to the Pre-Colombian civilization. It was considered a God to some called Chiminigagua.
You might have heard the story of El Dorado which is the perfect place to begin a tour of the Gold Museum – Bogota.
The Story of El Dorado
Legend says that on the day a new leader was chosen a great ceremony was held. A raft was constructed and 4 important men in communities rode on it, along with the new leader, to the center of Lake Guatavita. The future king covered himself in sticky mud and then added gold dust until he was covered completely in gold. Imagine how he looked. He would shine in the sun!
Then, members of the local communities, who had gathered around the edge of the lake, would throw in gold objects into the water as a sacrifice to the God that lived at the bottom of the lake. Then, the new leader would dive into the water which washed off all the gold.
When he emerged from the water he was king!
Over time, conquerors and visitors to the area noticed there was a lot of gold. People had gold in the homes and places of worship. The conquerors thought there must be a place of great wealth nearby in a marvelous ‘city of gold’.
Over time the legend of El Dorado has grown, fueled by books, stories, movies and now, even video games.
Does El Dorado actually exist?
Many have searched for the city of gold, but no one has ever found it. Do you think it exists? Is it real in some form?
Gold Museum- Bogota – 1st Floor
On the first floor of the museum, you’ll see the processes of taking the raw material of gold into items.
Types of processing gold
*melting using the lost wax method
*creating pieces and then attaching together
Affecting the color of gold items with the addition of other metals:
Gold Museum – Bogota – 2nd Floor
The displays on the 2nd floor are items made out of gold.
The most important type of item type in the museum is the poporo. The poporo is a container, used by men during meetings and ceremonies. In the container, men add the coca leaf and seashells. Then a stick is used to crush the leaves and shells into a substance which is then chewed during meetings and ceremonies. I think the sticks for crushing look a lot like old-fashioned hat pins with pretty decorations on the end.
The poporo can come in a variety of shapes and are still used in communities especially near the coastal city of Cartegena.
Gold Museum – Bogota – 3rd floor
Here is where you’ll see the most interesting items are on display.
There are several displays, each with a theme about the Shaman.
One case displays items showing shamans that have been transformed into a bird. I love how the light creates a shadow behind the items which gives them a feeling of movement. Like they are flying.
My favorite display was the seated shamans. This seated position is for basket weaving and they often stayed in this position to meditate.
In the past, you would compliment a man by saying, “He makes the baskets.” which means he provides for his family by creating baskets used to help carry things in from the fields. This saying is still used today.
Teach the kids how people all over the world have a lot in common. In the US we say a good provider ‘brings home the bacon’ which once meant he was able to feed his family.
At the end of this level is the coolest display piece of all. It is the gold representation of the scene from the El Dorado legend. You’ll see the raft, which shows the future king and the 4 shamans, during an important ceremony.
Interactive display room
Also on this floor is an interactive display with no explanation. You walk into a dark room and the door closes behind you. Then, all the lights go out. Warn the kids that it will be dark. I think it is a good idea to hold hands with children in this room till the lights come back on.
*Do not take small children into this room unless yours are happier about suddenly being in the dark than mine!*
Then the displays light up and music begins. The experience is supposed to be that of a shaman during a ceremony of the beginning of the world. Either way, it is a fabulous display of gold.
Gold Museum – Bogota – 4th floor
Here you’ll see 4 small displays that show how the indigenous peoples lived The large interactive displays show different sections of Colombia.
This is good for a brief peek, but they don’t really have anything to do with gold. The other interactive displays on this floor are large rooms to walk in which show the geography of Colombia.
Gold Museum Bogota Address:
Carrera 6 No. 16-58
+57 1 343 0999
Gold Museum Bogota Hours
Tuesday – Saturday – 9:00 am – 5:00 pm
Sunday 10:00 – 5:00
Confused about the right neighborhood for your Bogota stay? I was, too! We chose the Park 93 neighborhood and the Hotel El Dorado.
Natalie, The Educational Tourist