Trying our Hand at Tejo, Colombia’s National Sport

On our first morning in Colombia, we did a walking tour of Bogota’s Candelaria district seeing the Plaza de Bolivar, the Botero Museum and the Gold Museum. After a busy morning exploring the streets of Bogota, we took a much-needed break at a local bar. We relaxed, drank some local beer and played a traditional Colombian sport called Tejo.


Tejo reminded us of cornhole, a game we play at home in the in the midwest except with more of a bang! The object of the game is to throw a 1.5lb metal weight at a muddy inclined target with a metal ring in the center. Players take turns trying to hit the center of the target. What makes the game exciting is the small packets of gunpowder lining the metal ring. The gunpowder ignites on impact creating a loud explosion!


Scoring is easy. The person who’s disc lands closest to the center gets one point, if you explode gunpowder you get 3 points and if your disc lands within the gunpowder ring you get 6 points. If you miraculously do all three of the above, you get 9 points!


The game dates back over 450 years ago, when indigenous warriors would compete to marry a woman from the opposing tribe! We didn’t have quite the same stakes on our game, simply bragging rights. By the time we finished playing our hands were covered in mud. The game was fun, full of excitement and gave us a taste of traditional Colombia.

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