Dec 12

Shopping in Bogota – In Search of the Hammock District.

“”There’s the Hammock Hut. That’s on Third. There’s Hammocks ‘R’ Us. That’s on Third, too. You got Put Your Butt There. That’s on Third. Swing Low, Sweet Chariot. Matter of fact they’re all in the same complex. It’s the Hammock Complex, down on Third.”
“Oh, the Hammock District?””

I always thought that the Hammock District was nothing but a distant dream, but then I moved to Bogota. Sure, there’s not really a Hank Scorpio, but my experience of the awe-inspiring concentration of particular kinds of salable goods in particular areas of the city instil in me a great hope that there’s got to be a Hammock District out there. I mean, there are plenty of them around.

I think these were bought at Mary-Anne’s Hammocks.

Let me explain by way of example. There’s a Transmilenio stop called Flores. It’s not just a whimsical, helplessly romantic name for an urban area; it’s more of a say-what-you-see kind of thing. I think what happened is this: one day in Bogota’s distant past, a lady grew flowers at this particular spot. Her name was probably Maria. Her plants grew with such profusion and beauty that all the residents of the area begged her to give them some of their enchanting blossoms. As she was not only green-thumbed, but entrepreneurial as well, Maria realised that instead of giving the flowers away, she could sell them for a profit. After a year of brisk sales and much prosperity for Maria’s new business, another guy (I think it was Alejandro) realised that there must be something in this flower selling caper, and set up shop right next door. A theme quickly developed, and, before you could say “I’m from Canada, so they thought I was slow, A,” entire blocks around Maria’s enterprise were devoted to the sale of flowers and flower-related goods. Hence, the Flower District was born.

Of course, the Flower District is not an anomaly. Throughout the city, you will find great chunks of real estate taken over by shops all selling the same kind of thing. Are you after a bike? Well, head down Caracas to the Bicycle District. Glasses? Hmmm, I guess you could try one of the shops in the Glasses District on Calle 19. And, as it’s approaching Christmas, even if you don’t want to buy any lights, a stroll through the Lights District is quite awe-inspiring. Electronics? Jackets? Hardware? Pets? I think you get the idea.

One of the most spectacular, if a little daunting, Districts, of Bogota, is the Catholic Iconography District, as seen across the road from where I’m sitting in the Candelaria Juan Valdez. Shop after shop of Jesuses, Marys, saints, and Nativity scenes. Definitely worth the pilgrammage.

Jesus, in the plural, as found in the Catholic Iconography District.

And after that, all that remains is to find the Hammock District. I know it’s out there somewhere.

Paul G.

10 thoughts on “Shopping in Bogota – In Search of the Hammock District.

  1. Paul Giles on


    True! I finally made it to scope out your exciting revelations for myself. And there it was – just down the road from the Shoe District! Thank you for making my dream a reality. One day soon, I may just be getting into the swing of things…

  2. Paul Giles on

    Annika, you’re not toying with me, are you? You’ve actually located the Hammock District? I’m so excited that I might go buy a hammock!!

    It’s a good thing I’m not in the market for a toilet right now, as Santiago is a little far right now. I’m sure the bog has a Plumbing District too, though. In fact, I think I know where it is…


      Annika i Colombia on

      No joke at all! Go see for yourself. The Paseo Rivas market is located there and is hammock heaven…

  3. Sarita on

    I have noticed this in many South American cities, where whole blocks are taken over with one industry. I remember one area of Santiago de Chile, entirely taken up with plumbers’ shops!

  4. Annika i Colombia on

    Carrera 10 with calle 10 is what you’re looking for!


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