Federation for
Housing and

Changing minds and transport status

The IFHP Travel Squad reports from Bogotá: The bicycle is perceived as a low-status means of transportation. How do you change this?

In Bogotá, the bicycle is perceived as a low-status means of transportation. How do you change this? The citizen movement Ciclopaseo Cachaco are passionate about Bogotá and bicycling. They aim at getting people to bike by changing the minds and the culture around bicycles.

Ciclopaseo means bike ride and Cachaco is a geo-socio-anthropological term describing the original Bogotanos. They were dressed very elegantly in 1940s style and represented a more leftist thinking and the intellectual elite. Today, you still find real Cachacos but mainly elderly men encircled by a high degree of respect.

Promoting the urban biker to become the Cachaco of today
Ciclopaseo Cachaco is not a protest, a political fight, a brand, a company or a hipster flash mob. As the inhabitants of Bogotá today mostly originate from other cities, no one really celebrates Bogotá. Ciclopaseo Cachaco want to revive the immaterial cultural heritage of Bogotá, give the bicycle a new status and show that you don’t need advanced sports gear to bike. The first Ciclopaseo Cachaco event took place August 27, 2011 where 200 people dressed as Cachacos cycled through Bogotá. This year almost 700 participated in the event.

How to fall in love with the bike
By combining a strong ambition and passion, practising and communicating it through emotional and embodied storytelling, Ciclopaseo Cachaco presents the bicycle from another view. In this way they change the imaginary around the bike and open it to be more than the transport of the poor. The group believes that this is the real way to integrate the bike in our everyday lives and mobility, increase citizen involvement and create a more sustainable city.

With Ciclopaseo Cachaco in Zipaquirá
In Zipaquirá, a city one hour outside of Bogotá a group got inspired by the Ciclopaseo Cachaco and arranged their own event called Clásicas del Zipa. While we were in Bogotá, we attended the 1 hour bike ride event dressed as Cachacas (female) together with approximately 150 other Cachacos (male).

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>> The IFHP Travel Squad reports from Bogotá