Things to Do in Cartagena, Colombia

Cartagena is a charming colonial port city on Colombia’s Caribbean coast. This historic walled city is overflowing with cultural and historical treasures that evoke the rich melting pot of its diverse cultures, as evidenced by picturesque centuries-old cobblestone streets enclosed within ancient walls, stunning churches and plazas, elegant restaurants and carved balconies blooming with flowers. This is a must-visit for travelers to Colombia.

A stay in the stunning stone-walled Old Town is essential for any trip to Cartagena, and many visitors find it makes more sense to spend their whole visit inside the historic city’s walls, where all the best attractions are. The vibrant streets are packed with music, dance, street art and delicious restaurants, and the gorgeous mansions that line the streets are a feast for the eyes. The city’s pristine beaches and stunning sunsets are not to be missed, either.

In the afternoons, locals and tourists gather on the city walls to watch the sunset while sipping drinks and chatting with friends. It’s a beautiful and relaxing way to end the day. The views are amazing and the atmosphere is electric, making this one of the top things to do in Cartagena.

The city walls are also home to the famous Catedral de Santa Catalina de Alejandria. The cathedral is one of the most beautiful Catholic churches in the country and a sight to behold. It is a stunning structure with Romanesque architecture and is definitely worth a visit.

A visit to the city is not complete without checking out its impressive historic landmark, the clock tower. This was originally built to protect the city against pirate attacks and is a fantastic example of fabulous colonial architecture. Climb to the top and enjoy the stunning vistas of the city, or just hang out on the bridge and take it all in.

Another must-see is the Museo Naval del Caribe, which houses 500 years of Cartagena’s maritime history in a beautiful old Jesuit school building from 1612. Displays detail the city’s nautical history, and there are even a few cannons and muskets on display.

For a deeper cultural experience, consider taking a guided tour led by a local expert. These tours can be in Spanish or English and are a great way to learn about the history of Cartagena in an engaging and interactive manner.

The best time to visit Cartagena is between December and April when it’s dry, sunny and a peak high season for both Colombians and foreign tourists. The rest of the year can still be enjoyable but may be rainier and more humid.

For the most authentic, fun and exciting experience in Cartagena, it’s best to stay for at least four days — though many visitors find themselves staying longer! During this time, you can visit the pristine beaches, explore the culture and history of the city, and take day trips to some of the islands. With so much to see and do in this wonderful Colombian gem, you’ll want to come back again and again! Vacation Cartagena Colombia

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