Cartagena de Indias
Cartagena de Indias, located in Northern Colombia, is a bustling touristic city, brimming with historical and natural wonders. Centuries of history have left a city in which the present and the past meet to create something different, outstanding. It is known as a “tropical paradise” for its outstanding beaches and islands are absolutely delightful. It is also an architectonic jewel: the historic quarter of this seaport city, “La Ciudad Amurallada” (the Walled City), was declared a UNESCO Heritage Site in 1984.
From water sports to ancient historical places and museums to its beaches and islands, the things to see, do and enjoy in this city are too many to summarize. Here is our best to come up with a brief list:
Nature & Sports: There are plenty of beautiful beaches where you can take a refreshing dip in the sea, and many marvelous islands to visit and have a good time. Baru island is only a ferry ride away and will marvel its visitors with crystal waters and amazing underwater life. Practice water sports, such as windsurfing and kite surfing.
Architecture & History: Architecture is definitely the main strength of Cartagena de Indias. This city, which is almost 500 years old, will certainly mesmerize its visitors. The Ciudad Amurallada is, indeed, an outstanding view: its different components, built in a lapse of two centuries. There are many places to visit: the squares, el “Muelle de los Pegasos” (Pegasus Pier), the Clock Tower, the walls, the Heredia Theatre, the “Castillo de San Felipe de Barajas” (San Felipe de Barajas Castle), among many others! And such a city wouldn’t do without plenty of museums to account for its rich history.
Ecotourism & Unique places: There are places such as the “Volcán del Totumo” (El Totumo Mud Volcano), only 40 km (25 mi) away from the city ideal forbathing in warm dense mud (so dense, in fact, that you can’t sink in it), and, if you wish so, you can get washed in the marshes next to it and get a massage. A must visit is Islas del Rosario Natural Park. Its crystal clear waters, coral reefs and natural landscapes shape a place of unique beauty. It is possible to visit it as a one-day trip or spend the night and enjoy typical dishes and beach cocktails.
Nightlife: Cartagena de Indias has a very active nightlife with plenty of bars and nightclubs. Or perhaps you would prefer to try your luck at any of the different casinos.
The proximity to the Caribbean Sea and the Equator, makes the city humid and hot throughout the year. Temperature rarely goes below 20 °C and it usually stays between 23 and 32 °C. It’s a city to visit year round, but it is especially pleasant between December and April.
Cartagena de Indias has one of the busiest international airports of the country, the Rafael Núñez International Airport. It can also be reached by land (through three different routes that connect it to the rest of the country) or by sea.
The city is well-served with taxis, buses and combis (private van services that serve the same routes as the city’s official buses).
-Amazing Architecture and History: Museums, Ciudad Amurallada, Heredia Theatre, Castillo de San Felipe de Barajas, the Clock Tower and many more.
-Nature: Volcán del Totumo, Islas del Rosario Natural Park, beaches, Guillermo Piñeres Botanical Garden, ecotourism.
-Entertainment: Casinos, nightclubs, bars, plenty of places to play or watch sports (including but not limited to baseball, kite surfing, windsurfing and football).
Thanks to some Colombian friends I was able to fully discover Cartagena – a beautiful city with a lot of things to do and see, an amazing historical centre, its castle, beaches… My experience in the city and the language institution has been extremely positive. The teachers at the school are really friendly and highly qualified! I also took Salsa classes and was able to make a lot of new friends because people here are really warm-hearted and open-minded.'' Spanish course. Dimitri, Germany
''My stay in Cartagena is going to come to an end soon and I am looking back to a lot of nice and interesting experiences! Cartagena is like a completely new world for me – totally different from any other place I have visited so far! The city is extremely vivid and diverse and has become kind of a second home for me. My guestfamily received me in a very friendly and welcoming way. Classes were entertaining and efficient at the same time. The teachers have been really kind and some of them have become really close friends! Thanks to everyone for this awesome time!'' Spanish course. Sarah, Switzerland
''I was introduced to cartagena by some French and Spanish friends. The things I like most about Cartagena are its people and architecture. I really enjoyed eating in the little street stands because I have never done this before. I decided to learn Spanish because I really love Southamerica and am of the opinion that it is very important to know the language to truly immerge into the local culture.'' Spanish course. Odile, Francia
''Last year I decided to study Spanish because knowing this language would not only benefit my academic formation but also my personal and cultural one. After some research I found out that Colombia was considered to be the best country for foreigners to study Spanish. Furthermore I found it really interested to discover the cultural differences between my home country Brazil and Colombia. I got the chance to live and study in Cartagena for one month and it was an overall enriching and positive experience! Friendly and open-minded people, beautiful beaches, good music and food and a lot of interesting history made my stay unforgettable!'' Spanish course. Sarah, Brazil