Ciclovía may be the coolest idea to ever come out of a public office in Colombia. An initiative that started in Bogotá back in 1974 and eventually spread to Medellín, is finally beginning to gain momentum in Cali, where it is known as the CicloVida. The idea is to give the city’s inhabitants an opportunity to run, skate or bike through a selection of roads without having to deal with traffic, noise and pollution. Every Sunday El Transito blocks off the entrance to several of the big roads and boulevards ensuring that people can get their daily dose of exercise without having to go to the gym.
What started in Bogotá more than 30 years ago, now gives citizens access to more than 120 km. of road covering most neighborhoods, and attracts as many and 1 million people to the streets every Sunday for a workout.
With around 70 km. available, Cali is raising the bar and the weekly event is beginning to bring more Caleños to the streets. Currently, it is estimated that more than 200.000 people use the CicloVida every Sunday.
Not only do the streets give people an opportunity to run, skate or bike – the event also offers free aerobic, zumba and spinning classes in a lot of Cali’s public parks. On top of that, dog training to pet owners and rollerskating classes are given.
Below is a general map of the CicloVida routes, but to see it in detail and find out where the different classes take place, I’d recommend you check out CicloVida’s official website. The event starts at 8:00 A.M and ends at 1:00 P.M every Sunday in Cali.
All of the routes and activities of the CicloVida are located in the north, centre and south of the city. As a result some of people behind Cali’s CrossCamp have taken the initiative to create another Sunday funday activity in western Cali, called RecreoVida. It takes place on the newly renovated boulevard that runs on top of the tunnel, which starts in front of the hotel Intercontinental and continues by the Mayor’s office until arriving in front of the beautiful church La Ermita. The circuit is smaller, but the aerobic zumba class is great and lots of fun. They start at 8:00 A.M, finish at 10:30 A.M and the event is also completely free to join.
¡Que se diviertan! – Have fun! Or as famous Danish wrestler Asbjørn Riis always said: “Hold dig i form, spis sundt og tro på dig selv” which translates to: Stay in shape, eat healthy and believe in yourself 🙂