As my love for travel continues to flourish by the minute, hour, day, and image, I’ve begun looking beyond the common destinations that are sought after most by tourists. Don’t get me wrong, I want to see as much of the free world I can fit into my lifetime and a good chunk of those places are the popular locales that appear on numerous social media feeds and TV screens daily. But every once and a while, it’s good to explore somewhere off the beaten path that can give a more authentic experience, sans the blanket of over-commercialism and tourist traps. Enter Cartagena.
The city, located on the Carribean coast of Colombia, is brimming with as much charm as there are colors bursting throughout the streets. The oft-imprinted image of the city as a land of illicit criminal activity was not evidenced during my visit. Instead, I observed a quaint town full of history and vibrancy, not once feeling my safety in jeopardy.
It’s the perfect place to vacation, throwing itineraries to the wind. The Walled City (where tourists primarily stay) is completely walkable. You’ll find beauty and culture amongst the colonial architecture, massive churches, and edifying museums. Take a break from sauntering the cobblestoned streets and muggy weather to enjoy some fresh seafood or a cool mojito at any of the various cafes and restaurants.
And if you want a break from the city life, make arrangements to hop a boat in the early morning to escape to the aquatic paradise that is the Islas del Rosario, an archipelago comprised of 30 islands off the coast of Cartagena. As you can see, there’s a little bit of everything. Perhaps I can show you better than I can tell you. I hereby present to you “Cartagena: A Photo Essay”:
Taking it all in.
typical beach meal consisting of red snapper, coconut rice, and plantain chips. Yum!
visit to the Baru village to view the local way of life.
A Palenquera woman prepares her fruit basket.
ne of my favorite houses along the streets of Cartagena.
ne of the many street art displays in the Getsemani district.
orre del Reloj, or Clock Tower, the main gateway to the walled city.
”La Gorda” statue by renowned sculptor Fernando Botero that sits in Plaza de Santo Domingo.
lter inside Catedral de San Pedro Claver.
he beach on Gente de Mar Resort, located in the Islas del Rosario.