Salt Cathedral of Zipaquira – Complete Guide
The salt cathedral in Zipaquira is a place like no other in Colombia: a masterpiece carved in salt rock deep within the earth. It’s located in the outskirts in Zipaquira, a own just one hour away from Bogotá. In this guide we’ll cover everything you need to know to visit the salt cathedral of Zipaquira: how to get there, opening times and fees, and other things to see in Zipaquira.
How to get to the salt cathedral of Zipaquirá
The most common starting point to get to Zipaquira is Bogotá, Colombia’s capital city. Once in Zipaquira, you can get a short taxi or walk from the town center to the entrance of the “Parque de la Sal” or “Salt Park”, where the cathedral is located.
To get from Bogota to Zipaquira you have the following options:
How to get to Zipaquira by bus
To get to Zipaquira by bus, you must get to Bogota’s Portal Norte (North Station) of Transmilenio (the public bus system). Once there, locate the inter-city buses platform (intermunicipales), and get on a bus heading to Zipaquira (the bus displays “Zipa.”). These buses depart every ~15 minutes and the ride to Zipaquira takes some 45 minutes, depending on the traffic exiting Bogota.
How to get to Zipaquira by train
Another popular option to get to Zipaquira if you go during the weekend is the touristic train. These are old vintage trains departing from the “Estación de la Sabana” station in downtown Bogota. Before arriving at Zipaquira, the train stops at the Usaquén station, La Caro, and Cajicá. In Bogota you can board the train both at the Sabana or Usaquén stations. Important: the train only runs on saturdays, sundays and holidays.
The round way ticket costs ~20 USD. You can purchase the tickets at the ticket shops at the stations, or online at the train’s official website: https://www.turistren.com.co/ . In this website you’ll also find the train’s schedule.
There’s live music on the train, and you can buy beverages and snacks on board. You must bear in mind that your tour of the salt cathedral in Zipaquira must be relatively quick in order to be able to board the train back to Bogota. Therefore, if you want to have lots of time to see the salt cathedral, and also walk around the town of Zipaquira, it’s best that you use other transportation option.
How to get to Zipaquira by car
If you are driving to Zipaquira, you must take the Autopista Norte (North Highway) and once you leave Bogota, follow the signs that lead to Zipaquira. As always, we used Google Maps to get there and it worked perfectly. As with the bus, the time required to get to Zipaquira should be around 50 minutes, but it depends a lot on the traffic on the highway leaving Bogota.
If you arrive by car to the Salt Park, there’s available parking for a flat rate of ~2.5 USD.
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Salt Cathedral of Zipaquira Entrance Fee
You can buy the entrance tickets online at https://www.catedraldesal.gov.co/ or at the ticket shop at the salt cathedral’s entrance. The basic ticket cost around 17 USD for foreigners, and includes the audioguide. For an additional ~2 USD you can take the “Miner’s Route” tour, in which you can have the experience of being a miner for a day. Other “packages” include city tours of Zipaquirá.
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Salt Cathedral of Zipaquira Opening Times
The Salt Park, where the cathedral is located, opens everyday from 9 am to 5:45 pm.
What to see inside the Salt Cathedral of Zipaquirá
The tour inside the Salt Cathedral of Zipaquirá starts with the Way of the Cross, with all the various stations carved in salt rock, and representing all the stages lived by Jesus from his capture to his death at the cross.
When the Way of The Cross ends you’ll be at the cathedral’s cupola, where you’ll get the first glimpse of the main nave. After walking down some stairs you will arrive at the three main naves.
In the principal one you will find the world’s biggest carved cross, and the “medallion of creation”, similar to the one painted on the roof of the Sixtine Chapel in the Vatican.
This nave is supported by four immense pillars that represent the four evangelists.
In the Resurrection Nave you will see a sculpture resembling the famous “Pietá” (Jesus’ descent from the cross). Another worthy sight is the Tree of Life sculpture.
The whole tour around the Salt Cathedral takes around one and a half hours, and after the guided tour finishes, you can stay and wander around as long as you like.
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Other touristic places in Zipaquirá
Obviously the Salt Cathedral is Zipaquirá’s most important atraction, but in the town itself you’ll find other spots worth visiting.
First, there’s Zipaquira’s main square, a big open space surrounded by notable buildings like the town hall and the “normal” cathedral.
Another important square is the “Plaza de la Independencia”, where Simon Bolivar’s five main independence battles are conmemorated. Just five minutes away from this square heading up the hill there’s a small church you can walk up to for great views of the town.
This concludes our guide for visiting the amazin Salt Cathedral of Zipaquira. We hope this information will be of great use when you plan your visit to this colombian wonder! If this guide was useful, share it, and if you have any doubts leave it in the comments and we’ll get back to you!