Preserved by ancient fortifications built by the Spanish, Cartagena de Indias, commonly called Cartagena, is a stunning time capsule on the shores of the Caribbean. World class music, film and literature festivals (Nobel Prize winning Colombian author Gabriel Garcia Marquez kept a home here), talented chefs and chic hotels and shops are luring those in search of seaside culture.
Perfect forArt Lovers | Intellectuals | Romantics | Style Mavens
When to goYear-Round
Ideal length of stay3-5 Nights
Designing Your Journey
Work with Indagare to design the perfect itinerary for an immersive journey. Our travel experts know the destination inside and out, and they can make recommendations based on your travel needs and preferences.
3 Days: Essential Cartagena
A classic Cartagena itinerary includes exploring the city’s iconic sites as well as spectacular day trips. Indagare can also arrange private tours of the city by foot, bike or boat. Here is just one example of what our destination experts can create for you.
Day 1: Old Cartagena
Get your bearings with a morning walk to discover the old city of Cartagena. Begin at Cartagena Cathedral and embark on a guided tour of author Gabriel Garcia Marquez’s Cartagena, which includes the architecture, points of interest and other landmarks that inspired the Nobel-prize-winning novelist’s signature “magical realism” style. Later, enjoy sunset cocktails with a view of the Caribbean sea in the historic center before dinner at a classic neighborhood haunt to the sounds of live Cuban music.
Day 2: Culture
Begin the day with a visit to Castillo de San Felipe de Barajas, the most robust fort the Spanish ever built that has been impressively restored. After lunch at a favorite ceviche restaurant, stop by the Zenú Gold and take in its collection of more than 500 pieces of exquisitely crafted gold jewelry and iconography. Finally, explore the Getsemani neighborhood with a local guide to get a sense of the bohemian side of Cartagena. Finish the day with dinner at a chic local hotspot.
Day 3: Cartagena by Boat
Today, board your own small private yacht for a customized day trip to the nearby Rosario Islands including Cholon, Baru and a stop at Playa Blanca. Enjoy sunbathing, swimming, snorkeling and a visit to an Oceanarium with the flexibility of your own boat and captain. Lunch and beverages can be arranged ahead of time as well. Have a late dinner at a foodie-approved eatery, followed by an evening of dancing in town.
Where To Stay
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Casa San Agustin
This intimate and polished boutique hotel is Cartagena's most luxurious property.
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Sofitel Legend Santa Clara Hotel
The largest hotel in the old city manages to hold on to some of its heritage and history but deliver the service and amenities international travelers expect.
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