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Chapinero is a neighborhood from Calle 45 in the south to Calle 72 in the north, and from the mountains in the east to Avenida Caracas. Although the Wikipedia entry calls Chapinero an “affluent” part of town, most is middle class.
Chapinero east of Septima is known as Chapinero Alto because it lies on hills ascending into the Andes Mountains. The quiet, inclined streets are expensive apartments.
Calle 72, the northern border of Chapinero, is the financial district for the largest corporations and banks in the country. North of 72 starts the neighborhood Chicó, where you start to see the real money in Bogota. Zona Rosa lies in Chicó.
Every major city has a neighborhood like Chapinero that serves as a buffer zone between the ghetto and the money. It’s a haven for starving artists, college students, bohemians, hipsters, and diversity. The neighborhood isn’t necessarily bad, but not good either. Chapinero is that neighborhood in Bogota. In Chapinero you see gays, blacks, punks, skinheads metal heads, hip-hoppers, skaters, suits, bums, drunks, junkies, everything. It’s diverse.
I can find every kind of vice within a few blocks from my apartment: bars, liquor stores, weed, coke, brothels, casinos. I smell weed every day. Along Caracas and Kr 13, flyers for brothels are handed out. People drink in the plaza, in Hippies Park at Calle 60 and Septima, and in all the streets for that matter.
Chapinero is the gayest neighborhood in Colombia. The mayor declared it a safe haven for LGBT. So gays from all over Colombia moved here. However, it’s nothing like gay neighborhoods in the US since most gay Latinos live in the closet.
Plaza Lourdes is the center of Chapinero at Carrera 13 and Calle 63. There’s a big bad-ass church (half a dozen pictures below). In the plaza there are street performers and hippies selling crafts. There are restaurants, bars, and danceclubs. You can also score drugs.
Chapinero is a retail center – a place to buy things. Latin American cities cluster their industries, and Chapinero is the center for clothes. Clothes, shoes, suits, jackets, handbags, everything. You can also buy electronics, furniture, antiques, and more. Chapinero also has a nice little flower district – Las Flores – at Cl 70 with Caracas.
All pics were taken in the small section north of the plaza and west of La Septima.
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