Cartagena, Colombia’s famous tourist destination that caters to foreign and locals alike.

Unfortunately, I wasn’t aware of this place until I visited Colombia. I had a friend in Bogota who recommend Cartagena to me.

After I was told how amazing it was, I took a twenty hour long bus journey to get to Cartagena. Flying was not an option too as I hadn’t booked ahead.

Upon arrival, I was greeted y the most unexpected aura. It was the Colombian Carrribean culture.

It has an interesting mix Carribean and Spanish Cultures. This was visible in the arts, colours and traditions.
The people were very friendly and helpful. There was language barrier as a few spoke English and I didn’t speak any Spanish.
The old town in particular is best explored by foot. Most places within Bocagrande (where many up-market and all-inclusive hotels are located) are also within walking distance.
A Chariot is a popular way for tourists to get to know the old town. These can be flagged down in the street or there are usually some waiting at the Plaza Bolivar or close to the Santa Clara hotel. They are reminiscent of public transportation of colonial Cartagena, and essentially complete the atmosphere of the old town.

Cartagena’s main attraction is its historic old town surrounded by the city wall. Main entrance is the Clock Tower building. The walled city includes the neighbourhoods Centro, San Diego, Getsemaní and the modern part La Matuna. The oldest part of Cartagena is around Plaza Trinidad in Getsemaní.Cartagena’s 500-hundred year-old coralstone forts and great parts of its walled city are admirably intact and represent some of the finest examples of civil and military architecture of the Spanish colonial times.

The diet is mostly non vegetarian so for a vegetarian like me it was hard to find wholesome meals.Nearby coral reefs, powdery beaches, impressive mangroves, and waterways complement the historic and urban beauty.The best beach with great water for swimming is the Playa Blanca.

You can purchase a ticket for an organized tourist day trip or an overnight trip from hotels and hostels. Several motor boats leave from the port every morning and cost around COP $25,000-50,000 (Jan 2014) for a roundtrip day trip including lunch, not including the COP $12,000 park entrance fee (Jan 2014).

The Graphic image of the traveller , made from the photo submitted, was done by the author, The Brown Nomad.

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Author: The Brown Nomad

Also published on Medium.

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