Cali, the salsa capital of the world, and Bogotá, the capital of Colombia, are around 288 miles (463 km) apart.
The best way to travel between the two is by plane. There are several direct flights each day that will take you to Bogotá in one hour.
If you'd like to take a longer road trip, you can hire a private driver or rent a car in Cali and drop it off in Bogotá. This route may take around nine hours longer, but you will get to see mountainous landscapes, and it also allows you to make stops and detours in places like Armenia and Melgar.
If you want to make the trip by land, but don't want to take on the responsibility of driving, buses are also available. With stops, this option adds an additional one to three hours to the journey.
Tour around other great Colombian cities on this exhaustive 14-day itinerary. Or, once in Bogotá, join this 8-day trip to nearby attractions that include the cobblestones of colonial Villa de Leyva and Caño Cristales—which is called "the river that escaped from heaven" because of its colorful water.
Duration: 1 hour
Multiple direct flights leave from Cali's Alfonso Bonilla Aragón International Airport (CLO) for Bogotá's El Dorado International Airport (BOG) each day, and it's a one-hour journey. The route is serviced by several airlines that offer multiple flights throughout the day, so you will have plenty of options to choose from.
Given the short distance, don't expect service to be outstanding, or to receive any in-flight snacks and entertainment.
Once in Bogota, the easiest way to get to your accommodation is to take an official airport taxi. These are secure and have fixed prices depending on the distance.
By Rental Car
Duration: 10 hours, more depending on stops and overnights
This option is best suited for those who are familiar with Colombia since some stretches of the long road might not be well-maintained and traffic may be particularly difficult to navigate in the winding mountains.
The best way to get to Bogota is through Ibagué and Armenia on Route 40. This route is the fastest and also provides some astonishing scenery.
This route also passes through several towns and cities that are great for an overnight stay, so consider booking a hotel or two before you leave Cali. Ibagué is the biggest city on this route, and it will offer the most options for accommodation.
However, we recommend considering some of the smaller cities and towns that are favorite long weekend getaways for people from Bogota. These include Melgar and Girardot, which are hot and sunny year-round, and Armenia, which is known for its coffee.
Duration: 11 hours, more depending on stops
Buses depart from the Cali bus terminal to Bogotá every 20 to 40 minutes. This route is quite popular, so most major and non-regional bus companies offer journeys on it.
It's always a good idea to walk around the Cali terminal and compare times and prices. Surprisingly, most restaurants within the bus terminal offer delicious and authentic regional dishes at reasonable prices, so consider having a meal before you board.
Buses used for this route are usually big and relatively comfortable. They should have A/C, individual screens for entertainment, and bathrooms.
The length of the trip will depend on whether you take a direct bus or one that has multiple stops.