Check out this amazing video report from Travel Life Experiences about the Breaking Borders Project.
Learn about the impressive history of a group of locals from the Egipto neighborhood in Bogotá. Deciding to leave their criminal past behind they have started the initiative Breaking Borders, showing tourists around their streets filled with artwork that tells the neighborhood’s history. In this way, tourism has formed a real alternative for their personal and professional development and opened the doors for a brighter future.
You will meet your English-speaking guide in Chorro Quevedo, the founding place of Bogotá, There you will learn about the project while drinking a coffee or agua panela before heading to Nuestra Señora de Egipto, the church located at the entrance of Barrio Egipto. This is also the scene for the festivities on the 6th of January, a three-day religious carnival that is deeply rooted in the traditions of the people from Barrio Egipto.
The Calle Real or Royal Street, once the people’s only connection to the city, will lead you deeper into the neighborhood. Your guide will then stop with you at El Cuadrado, a central point in the history of gang fights of the area. While in the past this place was a strategic point for control over the territory for the gangs, today it is painted with pictures that tell you about the history and new values of the people.
Walking uphill through the colorful streets of the neighborhood, you will notice first-hand how much the area has changed and transformed into a place of hope, peace, and culture. All along the way, you will be able to see the history of the people illustrated in impressive graffiti art. Your guide will let you in on the meanings and stories behind these murals.
You will then reach the hills where the modest houses of the local guides and their families are bedded into the steep hills. You will note that the community is still underdeveloped and struggles with access to basic utilities. In spite of these conditions, this place is full of life thanks to the people’s warmth, joy, and desire of their children to fight for their dreams.
In this area, you will also see one of the biggest changes in the neighborhood. Thanks to the project; a football field has been constructed for the children of the district. Hear why this field in and essential part of the ongoing transformation.
How this tour creates an impact
The leaders of the Breaking Borders project want to change the neighborhood's narrative of violence and give a positive example to the youth in the area by creating an urban tourism project that tells their own stories using the art of graffiti and rap. On an extended version of the tour, you’ll visit the wood and weaving workshops of the NGO Buena Semilla. Breaking Borders and Buena Semilla contribute the community processes from the support of children, youth and women.
This tour is part of our HEART experiences.
This experience can be cancelled up to 24 hours in advance to receive a full refund
This is a wonderfully uplifting and unique tour which provides a one-of-a-kind insight into gangland activity in Bogota's Egipto barrio and how individuals like Harold and his uncle "Monkey" are trying to change the barrio for the better. Lorenzo was our tour guide and interpreter since both Harold and Monkey speak limited English, although it was inspiring to see how Harold used every opportunity during our tour to practice his English. If everyone in Bogota's barrios were like Harold, they would instantaneously be much safer and better places to live - he is truly a fantastic role model for other potential reformers in the barrios.
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