Cartagena - Colombia

Cartagena de Indias is located on the north side of Colombia. It has been known as the Heroic City, and it is considered the most important tourist destination in the country. The city, founded in 1533 by Pedro de Heredia, upholds vestiges of colonial and republican architecture, which can still be appreciated.

Cartagena is located in the heart of the Colombian Caribbean, and, during the colonial period, it was the principal port to the Spanish empire in America. It was also a refuge for treasures and wealth, which led the city to protect itself against external attacks by building a fortress and a wall. Both of them can be appreciated today. In 1984, Cartagena was designated as one of the UNESCO World Heritage Site.

On the streets of the historic centre and Gestsemani, the colonial and republic architecture can be fully appreciated. However, the city had taken a step forward to modernity with new and attractive buildings.

Cartagena offers a great diversity of tourist possibilities, due to the grand variety of beaches and beautiful islands in its surroundings. These places are strongly recommended to enjoy the breeze and sun; to practice nautical sports; to explore the considerable number of streets and alleys; and, to enjoy the culture by visiting its museums, churches, squares, and parks.

Cartagena has various types of transportation. Taxis are the most recommended to use. These can be identified as yellow cars. It is recommended to pay in the national currency, Colombian pesos, rather than in any other currency, even if they are willing to accept dollars, euros or GBP. Inside the city, the distances are quite shorts, therefore, journeys can take 15 minutes approximately. From the Hotel Las Americas to the historical center, the journey can take about 30 minutes, depending on the traffic.

Additionally, the city has other transportation types: hop on hop off services, Chivas (typical buses from the country), rental cars and the Integrated Transport System of Cartagena (SITM by its acronym in Spanish). A travel card is necessary to access the SITM.

All suggested hotels are close to the Hotel Las America, so there is no need to use public or private transportation methods.

It is worth mentioning that Cartagena offers amazing views, places or restaurants, so it could be a good plan during your visit to enjoy the variety of walking tours or to rent a bike to get to know the different places. Please, we strongly recommend contacting people from the Hotel or someone from the logistics team to help you with authorised renting places or guiding tours.

Finally, during the free time, if it is wanted to enjoy Cartagena�s amazing view, it is possible to make tours walking, or renting a bike on the permitted places.

Cartagena has a variety museums, monuments, streets, walls, colonial houses and different ideal sites to rediscover the city�s history.


Cartagena�s Cathedral is located in the old city. Its construction began in 1577 and finished in 1612. This construction replaced a modest cathedral and still under construction, it faced strong attacks that caused severe damage and delayed its completion. Its decoration exhibits an 18th-century gilded altar, a marble pulpit and sophisticated arcades supporting the central nave. According to several opinions, �this church is a wonderful throwback to the old world�.

Claustro San Agust�n

It was founded in 1825. This building has almost 105 years of history. Currently, it is the principal headquarter of the University of Cartagena, one of the oldest academic centers in Colombia.

Church Santo Toribio

The construction of the Santo Toribio de Mogrovejo began in 1666. It is one of the last colonial buildings constructed in Cartagena. It holds the only Baroque altarpiece in the city, several murals of colonial paintings, and a bullet that entered the temple in 1741, in the middle of mass. It is located in San Diego, a colonial neighborhood on the corner of Fern�ndez Madrid Park.

Church and San Pedro Claver Cloister

The original church was found in 1580 and then it was rebuilt on the XVII century. It is a hidden catholic cult dedicated to San Pedro Claver. Inside the higher Altar is conserved the mortal ashes from San Pedro Claver, who died for the redemption of black slaves in Cartagena.

Santo Domingo Temple

This is the oldest church in Cartagena de Indias. The church houses the miraculous �Santo Cristo de la Expiraci�n�, a beautiful sculpture made from wood. According to the legend, the sculpture was carved by an Angel at the beginning of the XVII Century. In this churche, you can also find an image of the Virgin with a crown in gold and emeralds.

Church and the Popa Cloister

On the top of a hill is located �El Cerro de la Popa�. This a mountain of, approximately, 150 meter-high. On its summit, you can find a beautiful church and convent built between 1606 and 1611. La Popa's cloister is one of the most beautiful in Colombia. Originally, it was used as a refuge of the Cimarron people; then, it turned into the scenery for several fights and used as a barrack and a fort. The church�s name �Popa" was given because of its similarity with a ship�s stern.

Museum Rafael N��ez House

This museum is housed in the residence in which the four-time president and Colombian poet, Rafael N��ez lived. The house is an extraordinary piece of national architecture. In this place are exhibit all his personal belongings and some of his poems.

Art Modern Museum

The Art Modern Museum of Cartagena is a cultural institution that was founded in 1979. The museum is located in the San Pedro Claver Square, near the San Pedro Claver Church and Cloister. This museum offers private tours and group tours, among other cultural activities.

Fortress Museum

The museum was founded in 1992 and it is located inside the Santa Catalina�s bulwark. It is a piece from the inside of the walled city of Cartagena.

Gold Museum

The Zen� Gold Museum houses a big number of gold objects such as figurines and jewellery which are being collected from around the country. Visitors are engaged on a journey through time, discovering native communities� history within Cartagena and other parts of Colombia. This Museum is located within a colonial mansion in Plaza de Bolivar.

Naval Museum

Behind San Pedro Claver Church is located the Naval Museum, which was founded on 1992. The building has a colonial style and before its use as a museum, it was the old Jesuit University. In this museum can be found diverse types of objects reflecting from the Colombian naval history to those speaking about the fortress destroyed during the battles.


Behind San Pedro Claver Church is located the Naval Museum, which was founded on 1992. The building has a colonial style and before its use as a museum, it was the old Jesuit University. In this museum can be found diverse types of objects reflecting from the Colombian naval history to those speaking about the fortress destroyed during the battles.


The 23 vaults, built between 1792 and 1796, were used as ammunition deposits. During the Republic period, they were prisoners' cells. Currently, the vaults are grouped to be used as stores for cultural and typical crafts.

Gabriel Garc�a M�rquez Monument

Inside the Merced Cloister, which is located in the Cartagena�s historical centre, have been laid to rest the ashes of Gabriel Garc�a M�rquez. He was awarded the Literature Novel Price in 1982. His ashes are held inside a floating platform, above the bronze bust of the writer.

Heredia Theatre

This theatre was built over the ancient ruins of La Merced Church (1625), to commemorate the Independence Centenary in 1911. The Heredia Theatre officially known as �Teatro Adolfo Mejia� was constructed in a horseshoe shape, with boxes and terraces divided by cedar lace-like lattices. Inside, there are stairs and statues made of Italian marble.


It is the principal door to the Cartagena�s historic centre and the original entry to the walled city. The tower is located between Independence Square and the horsecars. In 1874, a clock was brought to Cartagena from the United States; and, 63 years later, that watch was replaced by the current one which was imported from Switzerland.

India Catalina Monument

This is one of the most emblematic symbols of the city. The founder was Pedro de Heredia. He arrived in the company of an indigenous woman who played the role of translator. She, also known as the India Catalina, was born on the �corregimiento Galerazamba�. Today is a municipality of Cartagena..


This monument is located near the Castle of San Felipe and it is a masterpiece made by Tito Lombana. The monument is a tribute to the Colombian poet from Cartagena, Luis Carlos L�pez, also called as �One-eye�.


Pesca Club

Was a restaurant founded in 1956, is one of the most famous and traditional restaurants in Cartagena. It is well known for having an historic and a marine atmosphere, due to Pesca Club is located inside of the oldest colonial military fortress in Cartagena bay.

Donde Olano

The restaurant �Donde Olano� was created on the 16th July 1997, inside the heart of the historic downtown. Offer divers types of dishes, but the house specialty is fresh sea food, marinated in creol sauces from the French Antilles.

Juan del Mar

It is located inside the traditional San Diego neighborhood, the square with same name, inside the Santa Clara Hotel, which belong to the hotel chain Sofitel. The menu offers dishes bases on typic Peruvian cuisine, like Nikkei, Andean and creole style.


Is a typic Caribbean restaurant, which offers diversity of wines. The place is quite fresh, and main dishes are fresh fish, original sea food of the region, Colombian meats and diverse types of vegetables and typic Colombian fruits.


The Alma restaurant is located inside the Casa San Agust�n Hotel, where can be enjoy a delicious sea food casserole, diverse ceviche, several types of flesh, lobster tail and traditional sea food cuisine.

El Gobernador by Rausch

The Gobernador by Rausch, the restaurant from the Basti�n luxury Hotel, from the Raush brothers and the GHL group. They have a mix cuisine between local products and international products, according to a avant-gerade gastronomy.

Marea by Rausch

Marea is a restaurant from the Rausch brothers and the GHL group, which is locates the convention center of Cartagena, where can be enjoyed delicious food next the sea, with to a delightful view of the historic downtown. 80% of the dishes are sea food.


Caf� del mar

Caf� del Mar is located over the stunning walls of the historic downtown of Cartagena. The place opened the door in the year 2002, since then was well known as the famous restaurant in Cartagena due to its atmosphere and excellent services.

The beer house

It is a bar-restaurant, which has an open space to enjoy the best company and food, offers mainly marine fast food, like fried sea food and traditional beer.

Typic Dishes

The traditional cuisine of Cartagena has a popular tradition, based on fried food, rice, soups and stews. However, the Cartagena�s cuisine takes elements from another zone of the world. This traditional gastronomy is a mix between intense flavors and typical bird, red flesh and other elements from the marsh, rivers and the sea.

Some recommended typic dishes to try

  • Arepa de huevo
  • La Carima�ola
  • Butifarras
  • Arroz con coco
  • Mote de queso
  • Sancocho de pescado
  • Ceviche
  • Pl�tano frito

In addition, offers a variety of tropical fruits

  • Watermelon
  • Mango
  • Banana
  • Papaya
  • Cantalope
  • Guava
  • Lulo
  • Passion fruit

National Aviary

One of the most recommended places to visit after the ICN event, which will take place on May 2019. The National Aviary is located 14.5 km in roadway Cartagena-Bar� and it is the biggest aviary in America. It is a most-see touristic attraction, promotes the nature care and the environment sustainability. The Aviary has mora than 138 bird species and 1800 bird�s specimens approximately. Most them are small spaces which limit their mobility and growth.

Totumo Volcano

It is located 60 kilometers in Ci�nega del Totumo, a swamp of green water next to the mud Totumo Volcano. This volcano is known for having healing properties on the mud.

Guillermo Pi�ares Botanic Garden

The Guillermo Pi�eros Garden is non-profit private foundation, created in 1978, with the aim to study the conservation of the Caribbean flora and fauna.

In the city can be found five touristic information centers, located in strategic point around Cartagena, called PITS. The centers has professional touristic guiders over the Cartagena city in general.

  • Casa del Marqu�s del Premio Real (Principal Office) Centro, plaza de la aduana
  • Bocagrande (Avenida del Malec�n, in front of the Flanagan park
  • Centro, Plaza de La paz
  • Sociedad portuaria regional de Cartagena
  • International Airport Rafael N��ez (National Arrivals)

Rosario Islands

This archipelago is conformed by 28 islands, located 35 kilometers away from Cartagena. The beaches are quite white, and the sea water is incredibly crystalline. In addition, in these islands can be found the National Natural Park of the Coral Island if Rosario and San Bernardo.

Bar� Island

Is one of the most touristic attraction of Cartagena city. The beaches are white clear, the sea water is transparent, and there also are canyons surrounded by mangroves and multicolor corals.

Tierrabomba Island

This island is bases on a colonial architecture, it is located 10 minutes away from Cartagena city and conformed by 4 principal towns: Tierra Bomba, Ca�o el Oro, Punta Arena y Bocachica.

Titip�n Island

This island is located 50 km away form Cartagena�s archipelago of San Bernardo. Inside the island can be found swamps around given the shape of another island, as well there are water canals like the form of labyrinths, that works as refugee for the bird species in the ecosystem area.

M�cura Island

Is one of the 10 island which are part of the San Bernardo Archipielago. Since 1996, the island is part of the National Natural Park of the Coral Island if Rosario and San Bernardo, one of the most beautiful natural reserves and visited as well in Colombia. The island offers crystalline, clear and fresh water and amazing ecologic hike through the swamps.

Some hotels near Rosario Islands

Isla del encanto hotel

Isla del encanto hotel offers a variety of services, like bar, restaurants, boutiques, spa, ecologic hiking, swamps tours, snorkeling, scuba diving, and a visit to the oceanarium.

Coralina Island hotel

The hotel is in of the middle of Rosario Island Archipelago. The location offers a perfect west view of the sea. The coral reefs are the home of thunder types of marine flora and fauna species, with diverse types of colors.

Bar� Playa Eco Beach Resort

The hotel is located one-hour way from Cartagena in front of the Rosario Islands. The hotel has 200 mts of private beach and offers services like snorkeling, kayaks, scuba diving, ski, jet ski and hikes to Bar� town or the beach.

San Pedro de Majagua

This hotel it is in Big Island, in the National Natural Park of the Coral Island if Rosario. It is mostly known for practicing eco-tourism, a good place to relaxation, try activities like scuba diving and appreciate the magic color of the sea.

Gente de mar

Gente de Mar, is in the southern side of Big Island as part of the National Natural Park of the Coral Island if Rosario and San Bernardo, just 45 minutes away from Cartagena city. The island offers three types of ecosystem, where can be enjoyed the clear sea water, the white beach, the coral reefs and the natural tropical forest.

Map Of Cartagena City:

If you wish, you can access the following link to visit the city and its places of interest.

Source: https://www.google.com/maps/ @10.4332311,-75.5205805,13028m/data=!3m1!1e3