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Cartagena de Indias, the pearl of Colombia

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Domes of the old city of Cartagena de Indias


Outside the enclosure, just in front of the Tower, there is a statue of Don Miguel de Cervantes, who was working as an administrative officer in the city before he became famous with El Quijote. And by chance of life, it was the book that I had chosen to accompany me on the endless bus journeys that I took from the Peruvian city of Arequipa.


Outside the walled enclosure and very close to the Clock Tower, is the Gethsemane Neighborhood. It was there that we and most of the backpackers stayed. The area is very well located although many people distrust the environment. Its streets vibrate with life until night falls, when the truth is that it does get a little more dangerous to walk around between prostitutes and camels. Even so, the truth is that nothing happened to us in the 3 days that we frequented its streets and we also received a very good treatment in the cheap restaurants, the street stalls and the shops in which we consumed.

This part is much more authentic than the authentic citadel, where most people will be Guiris or Colombians who are doing tourism and the locals who try to make money offering a multitude of trinkets, horse carriage rides, photos and many other things.

The Gethsemane area and the rest of the neighborhoods that link it to the modern area of ​​hotels, beaches and restaurants are barely frequented by tourists and are ideal for getting lost between street markets, crowds, buses, people playing cards on makeshift terraces in middle of the sidewalk and a lot, but that a lot of life.

The third area is the one that includes Bocagrande, Castillogrande and El Laguito. It is the modern area of ​​the city, where residential buildings and comfortable accommodations are located in Cartagena. Due to its privileged situation overlooking the Bay of Cartagena and the Caribbean Sea, this sector had become the tourist area par excellence. San Martín Avenue is the main road artery of the sector and in its surroundings it has numerous restaurants, discos and hotels, among them the Hilton -where the candidates for the national beauty reign-, Almirante, Decameron or Capilla del Mar.

We went to this area walking at noon thinking that I would be closer - I was caught by the bus because at that time it almost gave us something - and we spent the afternoon on a beach after eating a good fried fish in one of the beach bars. The truth is that the beaches in this area do not have much to offer and do not pass narrow sand strips that are barely separated from the high blocks of apartments and hotels.

The majority of people who come in Pulserita plan -all included- for party and beach stay at these places at European prices.

The city gives undoubtedly to explore it for about three days, although the magic of sunsets and nights in its colonial part can catch you and make you lose the sense of time.

5.001

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