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Let's run away

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If you’re a shopper this is your place to buy breathable but stylish Caribbean fashion in natural and colorful patterns. Also look out for emerald and gold-plated brass jewelry, bikinis, and coffee. 


Unfortunately, Cartagena has gotten a bit more crowded since BC, so expect some street salesmen with annoyingly repetitive pickup lines (“where you from,” “what you looking for?,” and “you smoke marijuana,” mainly) - but if don’t engage they’ll leave you alone.

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about Cartagena

In the 15th century, Cartagena was essentially a layover for Peruvian silver going to Spain, which made it an obvious target for pirates and privateers, including the famed Sir Frances Drake. In 1594, after a series of attacks, Spain finally drew up plans for a walled city. 


Cut to today’s Cartagena and you have a romantic-colonial fortified city. It has 3 distinct neighborhoods - each within a few minutes' walk from the others. 


  • Getsemaní is a colorful hipster area where the backpackers hang out.  


  • Bocagrande is the modern area with beaches and skyscrapers. I recommend skipping this area altogether, its touristy and has a cruise ship port vibe. 


  • Downtown is where we’ll spend most of our time. It has a super aesthetic modern-colonial look and feel. People move through narrow cobblestone streets to get from the swanky bars to the restaurants on foot or horse-drawn carriage. 

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