GUATAVITA, Colombia, Sept. 11 (Xinhua) -- The picturesque town of Guatavita to the north of the Colombian capital Bogota was filled with more than 500 cyclists participating in the "Cycling for the Planet" event, convened by the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) on Sunday.
The recreational event, held to celebrate Colombia's National Biodiversity Day, aimed to raise awareness about the need to protect the country's native species.
Bike lovers will be able to participate in a short route of 16.3 km or a more demanding route of 30.2 km.
"Colombia is the richest country in species, in ecosystems, and today we meet to celebrate the importance of Colombia and the importance of generating actions for the protection of that life and that biodiversity," Sandra Valenzuela, the executive director of WWF Colombia, told Xinhua prior to the start of the event.
Valenzuela said the event aimed "to carry out concrete action to connect with nature and make a request to our governments for greater ambition in our goals for the protection of life and the reduction of the loss of biodiversity in Colombia."
"Each one of us can carry out a specific action, which is why we also hail the bicycle as a means of sustainable mobility, which, while generating healthy habits, also contributes to the reduction of pollutants, which are what are leading the planet to a collapse that we can reverse with these actions," Valenzuela added.
According to the Colombian Biodiversity Information System, the country is home to more than 67,000 species.
"I celebrate the opportunity to help this organization in caring for the environment and at the same time take care of my health, because I do physical activity," Marlon Tejedor, a doctor participating in the tour, told Xinhua.
In addition to the tour, a talk focused on the importance of supporting conservation initiatives, a yoga and pilates class, and a sustainable entrepreneurship fair were held. ■