Bogotá (/ˈboʊɡəˌtɑː/¸, /ˌbɒɡəˈtɑː/, /ˌboʊɡəˈtɑː/; Spanish pronunciation: [boɣoˈta]), officially Bogotá, Distrito Capital, abbreviated Bogotá, D.C. (during the time of Spanish rule, and also from 1991 to 2000, called Santafé de Bogotá) is the capital and largest city of Colombia administered as the Capital District, although often thought of as part of Cundinamarca. Bogotá is a territorial entity of the first order, with the same administrative status as the departments of Colombia. It is the political, economic, administrative, industrial, artistic, cultural, and sports center of the country.
The city is located in the centre of Colombia, on a high plateau known as the Bogotá savanna, part of the Altiplano Cundiboyacense located in the Eastern Cordillera of the Andes. It is the third highest capital in South America (after La Paz and Quito), at an average of 2,640 metres (8,660 ft) above sea level. Subdivided into 20 localities, Bogotá has an area of 1,587 square kilometres (613 square miles) and a relatively fresh climate that is constant over the year.
Bogotá was founded as the capital of the New Kingdom of Granada on August 6, 1538, by Spanish conquistador Gonzalo Jiménez de Quesada after a harsh expedition into the Andes conquering the Muisca. The Muisca were the indigenous inhabitants of the region and called the settlement where Bogotá was founded Bacatá. After the Battle of Boyacá on August 7, 1819, Bogotá became the capital of the independent nation of Gran Colombia. Since the Viceroyalty of New Granada's independence from the Spanish Empire and during the formation of the present Colombia, Bogotá remained the capital of this territory.
The city is home to senior agencies of the executive branch (Office of the President), the legislative branch (Congress of Colombia) and the judicial branch (Supreme Court of Justice, Constitutional Court, Council of State and the Superior Council of Judicature). Bogotá stands out for its economic strength and associated financial maturity, its attractiveness to global companies and the quality of human capital; it is the largest business platform of Colombia where most high-impact ventures occur. The capital hosts the main market of Colombia and the Andean natural region, and the leading destination for new projects of foreign direct investment coming into Latin America and Colombia. It has the highest nominal GDP in the country, contributing most to the national total (24.7%), and it is the seventh-largest city by size of GDP in Latin America (about USD 159,850 million);
The airport of the city, El Dorado International Airport, named after the mythical El Dorado, has the largest volume of cargo transported in Latin America, and is third in number of people. It is the city of Colombia with the largest number of universities and research centers, and has an important cultural offer, which is represented in many museums, of which the Museo del Oro is the most important, theaters and libraries. Bogotá ranks 52th on the Global Cities Index 2014, and is considered a global city type "Beta" by GaWC.
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