Home Travel 18 Best Things to Do in Cartagena – The Jewel of Colombia

18 Best Things to Do in Cartagena – The Jewel of Colombia

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I have actually wished to check out Cartegena because viewing Romancing the Stone in the 1980s. This gorgeous city has actually mesmerized the hearts of tourists, authors, artists, and filmmakers. As I checked out the leading things to do in Cartagena, it was simple to comprehend why the city has actually been a magnetic background for various motion pictures and books.

On my journey there, I fell for the food, the dynamic colors, and the history. Cartagena is the ideal area to get your fill of history, culture, and amazing Latin food There is so much more to the city than its abundant past.

Best Things to do in Cartagena

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There is a lot to do and see in Cartagena that it’s tough to fit whatever into your schedule. Whether you are a history enthusiast or looking for experience, here are a few of our preferred things to do.

This post was initially composed by Planet Blue Adventures, it has actually been upgraded with more trips and activities in Grenada for 2024.

1. Check Out the Walled City (Ciudad Amurallada)

best things to do in cartagena colombia clocktower old city
Clock tower of the old city

Cartagena’s walled city is a UNESCO World Heritage Site filled with colonial architecture, dynamic streets, and colonial structures and historic landmarks.

The old city has a few of the very best locations to check out in Cartagena. Make certain to stop at the Torre del Reloj, Cartagena’s royal clock tower that stands at the entryway to the old walled city. You can likewise book a private tour of the city for a more intimate experience beginning at $156.

2. Walk Tour

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One of the very best methods to get familiarized with any city is to schedule a strolling trip. Free strolling trips utilized to be provided, however it appears to not function any longer. You can schedule this strolling trip of the historical city to discover about its abundant history as you take in the old town’s architecture and see Cartagena’s elite, who still own numerous of the grand colonial homes in the old city.

When you stroll through the cobblestone streets, you get a look into what the city resembled centuries back. The Cartagena Full Day City Tour takes you through the highlights of the city, consisting of Las Bóvedas, the streets of Getsemaní, the tunnel system of Castillo de San Felipe, and more for simply $49 per individual.

3. Store at Las Bóvedas

best things to do in cartagena colombia las bovedas

A series of vaults became stores offering regional crafts and mementos. This dynamic market is filled with travelers. If you brave the crowds, you will get an opportunity to buy special ornaments, mementos, and gorgeous mochila bags made by the females of the Wayuu native people

Las Bovedas is a sight in itself. Among the last structures constructed within the walled city, it has forty-seven arches and twenty-three domes. It likewise has a checkered previous acting as a munitions shop and after that a dungeon before its existing status as a busy market. Get Your Guide  uses city trips and adventures around Cartegena with simple cancellation as much as 24 hours beforehand.

4. Street Art of Getsemani Neighborhood

best things to do in cartagena colombia Getsemani Neighborhood

The Getsemani community is another stop you ought to contribute to your schedule. It’s one of the most essential areas in Cartagena, plus a political and cultural center. It’s filled with incredible street art.

Beautiful murals and brilliant colors embellish much of the walls there and keep you mesmerized as you roam around. Understood for its vibrant streets, graffiti art, and vibrant environment, this community is a cultural hotspot.

5. See Castillo de San Felipe de Barajas

best things to do in cartagena colombia Castillo de San Felipe de Barajas

Visiting Castillo de San Felipe de Barajas is not simply a journey to the historical fortress of this prepared city on the Caribbean Coast. It’s an immersive journey into the heart of Cartagena’s colonial history. This enforcing structure, happily standing atop the San Lázaro hill, is a sign of the tactical value of Cartagena in the colonial age.

Recognized as one of the most considerable strongholds constructed by the Spanish in the Americas, Castillo de San Felipe de Barajas is an architectural marvel and has extraordinary scenic city views. The Castillo is quickly among the leading tourist attractions and among the very best things to do in Cartagena.

The fortress, initially integrated in the 17th century, played a vital function in safeguarding the city versus pirates and intruders throughout colonial times.

Visitors can take directed trips to find out about the fortress’s history, tactical value, and building information.

Castillo de San Felipe de Barajas is situated simply outside the walled city and is quickly available by a brief taxi trip or a moderate walk from the city. Its popular position on San Lázaro Hill makes it a noticeable landmark. The top of the fortress uses awesome views of Cartagena and the Caribbean Sea, perfect for photography lovers.

best things to do in cartagena colombia playa blanca

6. Unwind at Playa Blanca

Located on Barú Island, this sensational white-sand beach is a piece of paradise, understood for its crystal-clear blue-green waters and attractive setting.

The beach is perfect for swimming due to its calm, clear waters, and sunbathing on the soft, white sands is a peaceful method to take pleasure in the tropical sun. You can go snorkeling, and there are a number of beachside dining establishments and shacks to take pleasure in fresh seafood and conventional Colombian seaside meals. Unwinding at Playa Blanca in Cartagena uses an ideal mix of natural charm and peaceful atmosphere.

Playa Blanca is a popular field trip from Cartagena, and you can visit it as part of a trip or by yourself. The most popular method to reach Playa Blanca is by boat. You can capture a boat from the Muelle de los Pegasos near the Cartagena Convention. These boats normally leave in the early morning and return in the afternoon.

You can likewise reach Playa Blanca by roadway. It’s about a 1.5-hour drive from Cartagena. You can work with a taxi or sign up with a group trip that consists of transport. These picturesque islands use crystal-clear waters and are ideal for snorkeling and diving.

things to do in cartagena rosario islands

7. Take a Rosario Islands Day Trip

Just 100 kilometers (62 miles) offshore, however relatively a world away, is the Rosario Islands. The Rosario Islands are a group of over 28 islands and belong to Colombia’s National Natural Park system.

There you can take pleasure in the regional seafood and whatever that you like about the Caribbean– the clear blue skies, white sand beaches, and surviving on “island time.” The islands boast a few of the most gorgeous beaches in Colombia. The clear Caribbean waters and reef make this a prime area for snorkeling and diving. :

Many trips use the opportunity to check out numerous islands in the island chain, each with its special beauty and functions.This highly rated tour To reach the Rosario Islands, think about Sunset Sailing Cartagena, which uses day trips.

uses cruising journeys to the Rosario Islands beginning at $86.

Taking an outing to the Rosario Islands is an emphasize for lots of visitors to Cartagena, using a superb escape into an island chain renowned for its sensational natural charm and dynamic marine life.

best things to do in cartagena at night

8. Experience the Nightlife in Cartagena

The Old City comes alive during the night with an abundant, dynamic night life.

Make sure to check out the vibrant bars, clubs, and coffee shops, particularly in the locations of Getsemaní, the Old Town, and Plaza de la Trinidad. Plaza de la Trinidad has a lot of food stalls offering street food at sensible rates and street suppliers offering unique fruits and mementos. The square is alive with street entertainers, dancing, and music.

In the night, Plaza de San Diego likewise changes into a dynamic night life area.

things to do in cartagena plaza de bolivar

9. Check out the Palace of the Inquisition

The Palace of the Inquisition is a museum that uses insights into the Spanish Inquisition’s history in Colombia. This renowned landmark, situated in Plaza de Bolívar in the heart of Cartagena’s walled city is not just a window into Colombia’s colonial past however likewise a testimony to the durability and change of its individuals.

Visiting the Palace of the Inquisition in Cartagena is an extensive and informing experience, diving into a substantial element of the city’s abundant historic tapestry.

The Palace of the Inquisition is positioned in the dynamic Plaza de Bolívar, quickly available from any part of the Old City. Its main area makes it a hassle-free stop for visitors checking out the historical district.

The structure itself is an architectural marvel, with its baroque architecture, gorgeous façade and unspoiled interior yards showing the Spanish colonial design. It was as soon as the seat of the Holy Office of the Inquisition in Cartagena, developed to condemn and evaluate heresy and other spiritual offenses. Among the more chilling displays consists of the instruments of abuse utilized throughout the Inquisition, supplying a plain look into this dark duration of history.

The museum likewise showcases a range of historic artifacts, colonial art, and files that paint a brilliant image of life in Cartagena throughout the colonial age.

things to do in cartagena la popa monastery

10. Check Out La Popa Monastery

Exploring La Popa Monastery is an enchanting journey to among Cartagena’s a lot of renowned landmarks, set down atop the greatest hill in the city it offers sensational views of the city and homes spiritual art and artifacts. La Popa Monastery, formally called the Convento de la Candelaria, uses not just a spiritual retreat however likewise a few of the most awesome views of Cartagena.

La Popa Monastery is found on La Popa Hill, the acme in Cartagena. It is quickly available by taxi or a directed trip, which is suggested due to the steepness and privacy of the roadway causing the abbey. The journey to the leading deals peeks of the city from various point of views.

Originally constructed in the 17th century, the abbey is soaked in history and has actually served numerous functions throughout the centuries, consisting of a fortress and a spiritual. Inside, visitors can see an abundant collection of spiritual art and artifacts, consisting of the well-known statue of the Virgin of the Candelaria, the patroness of Cartagena.

things to do in cartagena night

Perhaps the most sensational function of La Popa Monastery is the scenic view it uses of Cartagena, the Caribbean Sea, and the surrounding locations, making it a great area for photography.

11. Go Dancing Crazy Salsa Learn about regional dances like salsa and champeta. Individuals of Cartagena like to dance and the very best method to immerse in the culture is to head out and dance with the residents.

If you aren’t positive about your dance abilities, do not fret! Review your salsa abilities atThis is a great tour Their expert dancers will assist you master your relocations in no time at all and present you to this popular Latin American dance. Coffee shop Havana is another location that has salsa experiences where you can see individuals sign up with or dance in.

There are trips that deal with dancing your method around the old town and its regional bars.

that consists of consuming at regional street food areas, a mixology class, and a night of dancing.

12. Go To the Gold Museum (Museo del Oro Zenú)

Visiting the Gold Museum (Museo del Oro Zenú) in Cartagena uses a deep dive into Colombia’s pre-Columbian heritage. It shows a collection of gold and pottery from the Zenú culture. This museum lies in the heart of Cartagena’s historical downtown and showcases the cultural history and workmanship of the Zenú native individuals.

The Gold Museum is easily situated in the Plaza de Bolivar, in the historical center of Cartagena. This main area makes it quickly available on foot from lots of other traveler destinations, hotels, and dining establishments in the Old City. Plus, the Gold Museum uses complimentary entry, making it an available tourist attraction for all visitors. When flourished in this area,

The Gold Museum provides a distinct chance to comprehend the ancient civilizations that.

13. Unwind in the Plaza de San Diego

Relaxing in the Plaza de San Diego is an essential Cartagena experience using a dynamic piece of regional life. This attractive square is nestled in the heart of Cartagena’s historical district. It is an ideal area to people-watch and loosen up.

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The plaza is surrounded by a range of dining establishments and cafés, using an opportunity to taste regional Colombian food along with global meals. The square typically comes alive with street artists, artists, and entertainers, including a vibrant cultural ambiance to the environment.Book it here.

Plaza de San Diego lies within the walled city, making it quickly available on foot from much of the city’s leading tourist attractions. Its main area in the San Diego community positions it near numerous hotels, dining establishments, and stores.

14. Set Sail on a Sunset Cruise

things to do in cartagena walled city

Enjoy the seaside charm of Cartagena from the water. Among the very best things to do in any tropical location is to go cruising. This romantic sundown cruise leaves from the Muelle de la Bodeguita pier in front of the walled city.

You’ll set cruise through the Bay of Cartagena de Indias as you listen to music and take in the horizon of magnificent Cartagena. You’ll see the Manga and Bocagrande community, Castillo Grande, and Manzanillo Island, and after that you’ll continue along to the El Laguito community and Tierrabomba Island.

15. Walk Along the City Walls at Sunset

best things to do in cartagena cafe san alberto

If you aren’t up for striking the water, take a walk along the city walls for a view of the historical centre from above. These walls use a attractive and romantic view of the city. Make your method to Cafe del Mar for sundown mixed drinks.

The walls were constructed to safeguard from pirates as Cartagena de Indias was a tactical area and port for export to Spain.

16. Coffee tasting at San Alberto

Do a coffee tasting at Cafe San Alberto, led by 3rd generation coffee grower Gustavo Villota. In the class, you will find out about coffee plants and how to process coffee. You’ll experience a sensory workout as you take pleasure in newly brewed coffee.

best things to do in cartagena rum chocolate tasting 640x960 1

This is among the most granted and popular specialized coffees grown in Buenavista, Columbia. It simply may be the finest coffee you’ve ever tasted when you taste this. After your class, check out the coffee shop listed below the class to buy quality beans to bring home. Sofitel Legend. Libertario Coffee Roasters is another coffee shop where you can take pleasure in scrumptious Colombian coffee. You actually can’t fail with any coffee shop. Colombia has terrific coffee.

17. Rum and Chocolate Tasting at Sofitel Legend

Tempt your senses with a rum and chocolate tasting at the

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There you will experience a few of the finest aged rum in the Caribbean completely paired with a variety of scrumptious Colombian chocolate, all curated by the somellier.National Aviary of Colombia Tour. While there, take in views of this historical hotel, which was previously a convent.

18. Go To the National Aviary

best things to do in cartagena casa san augustin 2

If you like birds, then check out the

It houses 135 types of wild birds and lets visitors find out about the various types through 21 interactive stations. Anticipate to see flamingos, parrots, emus, Harpy Eagles, and much more.

Where to Stay in CartagenaCasa San Augustin Historical homes and brought back convents now house a few of the elegant store hotels in Cartagena.

Sleeping in quarters integrated in Spanish colonial times, you will discover that the majority of the spaces are focused around outdoor yards however have actually been upgraded to house contemporary features. Here are a few of our preferred locations to remain.

best things to do in cartagena courtyard hotel governator

Casa San Augustin– The

is a shop hotel that exhibits high-end from its colonial-era white-washed structures to its prime area in the heart of Cartagena.

It’s 17th-century splendour at its finest. The 20 spaces and 11 beautiful suites lie in 3 homes to offer it the feel of home.Casa Cochera del Gobernador  The architectural information are 2nd to none, from the wood beam ceilings to the spiral staircases in a few of the two-story suites. Suites are provided with all the animal conveniences, bathrobes, and Ortigia Italian features.

The hotel likewise consists of a peaceful day spa and a 300-year-old aqueduct in the center of the hotel with a stunning L-shaped swimming pool. Great dining is offered in the Alma dining establishment, which likewise works as the breakfast space in the early morning.

Casa Cochera del Gobernador– Staying at the

for 2 nights and we might have quickly remained more.

best things to do in cartagena fried plantains appetizer

Located in the historical Cartagena de Indias by the Santa Catalina Cathedral and is housed in among the city’s earliest structures, going back to the 16th Century.

The spaces are perfectly selected with elegant bed linen and a light and airy feel, providing you the ideal background for a night of rest. A tasty breakfast is served by friendly personnel on the 2nd flooring, and the fresh, regional fruit on the buffet is mouthwatering.

Enjoy Local Cuisine

Try conventional meals like arepas, ceviche, and fresh seafood.

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The city’s cooking scene is prospering in Cartagena. In your area sourced foods are plentiful here.Cocina de Pepina From the bounty of the sea to the fresh, in your area grown veggies and fruits, much of the regional dining establishments utilize this abundant resource to develop conventional meals with an island style. Here, you will discover conventional meals like ceviche, or Arroz con coco or Pargo Frito.

Whether you are dining at a first-class dining establishment or getting a fast bite from a street supplier, you will not be dissatisfied. In Cartagena, there is no scarcity of incredible dining establishments and coffee shops to experience.

where to eat in cartagena carmen restaurant

Concina de Pepina– Depending on your tastes, you can attempt the ceviche or Mote de Queso at Carmen Restaurant, for conventional Colombian fare and among the most well-known dining establishments on the north coast.

Just make sure to arrive early, as they do not take appointments.

cartagena colombia ceviche

Carmen Restaurant– One of my preferred lunch areas is Marea by Rausch Restaurant

I liked the picture-perfect contemporary design and the rich tree-filled outdoor patio. Food is art at this family-run dining establishment, dishing out regional tastes with a modern-day twist. Attempt the artfully provided salads and ceviche meals, and mains with fresh fish.

  • Marea by Rausch– Another waterside alternative is the Upscale

There, you can take pleasure in scrumptious watermelon salads, Ceviche, and fresh seafood meals.

Carne fans can take pleasure in well-prepared beef filets served with red wine jus. Anticipate to take pleasure in Michelin-star service and food without the large price gave you by the well-known Rausch bros.Columbia’s Book ahead for a table on the desired waterside balcony, where you not just get a fantastic river view you can take pleasure in the cupolas of San Pedro Church.

About Cartagena

Cartagena de Indias is the gem in

  • crown. This seaside city is abundant with maritime history and dynamic with experience, beauty, and a previous filled with pirates.
  • Founded in 1533 by Spanish leader Pedro de Heredia, the city grew thriving rapidly, and with the newly found riches came the risk of attacks from marauding sea pirates.
  • Copa Airlines After several attacks, Cartagena started to safeguard itself by building walled substances and castles. A lot of these exist today and wait for being checked out.
  • Cartagena lies in Colombia, South America. The primary language is Spanish. layover in Panama The currency is the Colombian Peso: 1 USD = 3019 Colombian Pesos. See Currency Converter for current rates.
  • uses day-to-day flights to Cartagena through Panama City (airline company center).Panama Canal.

Flying with Copa Airlines permits you a ’24-hour

‘ at no additional expense. When to check out Cartagena

The weather condition stays continuous in Cartagena,

It’s an excellent chance to check out Casa Viejo and the Sofitel Legend Santa Clara Hotel. It is hot year-round. The only things that alter are humidity and rainfall.

December to March is the very best time to check out Cartagena: The weather condition is warm throughout the day and breezy during the night, and the humidity is low. It is the high season so there are more travelers. The bars will be hopping at this time of year if you like night life. Of Love and Other Demons.

There is another secondary high season the week before Easter. It is crowded throughout this time, and rates are more costly. June through September is the damp season and the most popular months. Temperature levels vary throughout the year from 24– 32 degrees Celcius. (75-91 Fahrenheit)Wikimedia Commons

And now that you understand more about all the important things to do in Cartegena, I will leave you with a story.

One of the most well-known authors from Colombia was Gabriel Garcia Marquez.(*) While working as a reporter for El Universal, the regional paper, he discovered the discovery of a remains of a girl with copper hair as they were refurbishing the (*), a previous convent and healthcare facility. The crypt where she was discovered can still be accessed through a glass gate at Santa Clara’s El Coro Bar.(*) This experience motivated his bestseller,(*) Photo courtesy: Joe Ross from Lansing, Michigan through (*) Plan Your Next Trip to Colombia With These Resources(*)

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