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16 September 2012 / leggypeggy

Razzle, dazzle ’em with gold in Bogota

Gold figure

One of my favourite pieces

When you visit the Gold Museum (El Museo del Oro) in Bogota, it’s easy to believe that all the gold in the world is in Colombia—in that one place.

The museum holds 55,000 gold items, with 6000 pieces on display. It is, indeed, the largest world’s collection of gold artifacts from pre-Hispanic times in South America. The detail and intricacy are incredible, and highlight the high level of metal-making skill that existed then.

Most exhibits have descriptions in English as well as Spanish, which is a painstakingly effort on the part of any museum—and most appreciated by those limited to a foreign language phrase book.

We were also impressed to see how the displays covered works by the many different cultures, such as the Calima, Quimbaya, Muisca, Zenu, Tierradentro, San Augustín, Tolima, Tayrona and Uraba.

In addition to gold, there are displays of pottery, stone, wood, shell and textiles. There were also simple explanations on how the various items were made.

We spent half a day wandering through the museum (and stayed for lunch too). The owner of our hostel suggested the outing, and her timing was perfect. We went on a day when admission was free.

Sorry about the sheer volume of pics. I couldn’t resist. I’ve shared pics of a wide variety of items, and have added a few notes of explanation. I probably could/should explained more, but my eyes are still dazzled.

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Leave a Comment
  1. Ken Berry / Sep 17 2012 6:35 am

    Lima has a similar huge gold museum. And just imagine: this is what has been left — and not melted down by the Spaniards!!!


    • leggypeggy / Sep 17 2012 7:32 am

      Thanks for the tip about Lima. And you are so right. The sheer volume of old gold is gobsmacking.


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