Cartagena Things to Do

  • taking a volcano mud bath
    taking a volcano mud bath
    by hanspeter_W.
  • Carriage
    Carriage
    by apuleuis
  • Things to Do
    by apuleuis

Most Recent Things to Do in Cartagena

  • apuleuis's Profile Photo

    Jardin Botanico Guillermo Pineres

    by apuleuis Written Apr 1, 2015

    In the nearby town of Turbaco is a botanical garden. You can take a bus from Cartagena to get to Turbaco & a moto-taxi to the Garden. I forget, but think admission was 17.000 Was decent if you didn't plan to go into the jungle anywhere else.

    Related to:
    • Jungle and Rain Forest

    Was this review helpful?

  • apuleuis's Profile Photo

    Naval Museum

    by apuleuis Written Apr 1, 2015

    The naval museum is worth the 8.000 entrance fee. Great during the afternoon, since there is air conditioning :) It covers over 400 years of naval history on 2 floors. Don't miss the submarine walk-through in the corner, that was cool. My only complaint was that almost no signs are in English.

    Museo Naval del Caribe Large ship replica Inside the submarine Old anchor
    Related to:
    • Museum Visits

    Was this review helpful?

  • apuleuis's Profile Photo

    Rent a Moped

    by apuleuis Written Mar 28, 2015

    Rent a moped in Old Town. The shops aren't well marked so you have to find a moped with an ad printed on it and ask the shop owner about it. There are a number of different options. There are also bicycles for rent. We paid 30.000 per hour to rent the moped and putt around Old Town. Was worth doing once.

    Related to:
    • Motorcycle

    Was this review helpful?

  • apuleuis's Profile Photo

    Castillo de San Felipe

    by apuleuis Written Mar 27, 2015

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    We walked there from our Getsemani hotel, but you can take a taxi or visit it from a hop-on bus tour also. Admission 17.000 per person. We got there right as it opened at 8:00 and had the place to ourselves, even the vendors hadn't set up yet (although the videos weren't running yet either). As we were leaving at 9:00 there were lines of tour buses and swarms of tour groups. If you don't like crowds, come early. Good views of the city, cool fortress, walking the maze of inside corridors was fun too. Worth a visit.

    Castillo at daybreak Colombian Flag
    Related to:
    • Historical Travel
    • Castles and Palaces

    Was this review helpful?

  • apuleuis's Profile Photo

    Carriage Ride

    by apuleuis Written Mar 27, 2015

    The horse drawn carriages come out in the evening in Old Town. I highly recommend taking one your first night in town. They are romantic & fun. The driver points out some of the highlights of the area, so you know what to re-visit later. We bartered to 50.000 COP for the 30 minute ride

    Carriage
    Related to:
    • Romantic Travel and Honeymoons

    Was this review helpful?

  • apuleuis's Profile Photo

    Totumo Volcano

    by apuleuis Written Mar 27, 2015

    Many tour guides are available in Old Town to set you up with a tour to Totumo. We paid 100.000 COP per person, included transportation, admission & lunch on the beach. You give someone your camera & they take pics for you. when you get into the volcano there are men giving massages. These aren't really optional since they grab you before you get used to the mud, don't even try to fight it. The mud is cool because it is so dense you float. If you try to swim, you'll fail. But you can just stand upright with your feet on nothing. Then you get out and someone grabs you inappropriately while trying to get as much mud as possible off you. Then you go down slick stairs and into the lake. There are women there to help wash you off. These women are something else, no matter how hard you try to run away, they are right there dumping water on you, pulling at your swim suit & putting their fingers in your ears. Again, don't even try to fight it, its not worth it. Then when you're back in the pavilion the camera guy, massage guy and cleaning lady all come to collect. 3.000 COP per person for each 'service' so be sure to have 9.000 per person in small bills with you. There are bathrooms there, but I recommend having your swimsuit on when the tour starts. It is a cool experience (and an unusual one). Then get traditional lunch & swim in the ocean near Cartagena.

    Totumo Road to the lake to wash up In the mud The restaurant Beach after the restaurant
    Related to:
    • Beaches
    • Adventure Travel

    Was this review helpful?

  • Dabs's Profile Photo

    Hop on Hop off bus

    by Dabs Updated Feb 9, 2015

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    We hadn't booked anything in advance having heard that it was easy enough to tour Old Town by ourselves but then we heard that taxi drivers weren't always that honest and we wanted to see a bit more than the old town so we arranged for the HOHO bus tour offered by the ship. It was $28 per person and while it was a little more than booking online, it offered transport to and from the ship and it had a special walking tour that left right when the bus arrived at stop #1.

    After we did the walking tour, we headed back to stop #1 where we hopped back on the bus and did the full circuit through Cartagena. I thought it was interesting to see more than just the well preserved Old Town, much of the rest of Cartagena was newer construction, there were several beach areas and a big shopping district.

    Although they handed us ear buds so we could listen to English commentary, they never turned it on and spoke only in Spanish. When we stopped, we asked the guide why he was only speaking in Spanish and he said that he asked (in Spanish naturally) if anyone needed English commentary! Duh! And although he promised that he would do the tour in both languages, he never uttered one word of English.

    Was this review helpful?

  • kiwigal_1's Profile Photo

    Walk around the Walled City

    by kiwigal_1 Written Jan 23, 2015

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    One of my favourite things to do in Cartagena is walk around the walled city in the old sector of town. I didn't stay within the walls as hotel accommodation was more expensive however it was great to get a feel for Colonial Cartagena with the old colonial buildings and streets.
    Go in the evening and enjoy a meal in the plaza in front of the Sofitel.

    Walking in Cartagena Walled City in the Evening Plaza inside Cartagena walled city
    Related to:
    • Historical Travel
    • Arts and Culture
    • Architecture

    Was this review helpful?

  • xaver's Profile Photo

    Calle Tumbamuertos

    by xaver Written Mar 26, 2014

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    The name of this calle stimulated my curiosity so I tried to look for info about it. The street in the past became an obligatory stop for funeral processions as it was closed to the cemetery. The poor conditions of the road caused several incidents with the coffins naking them fall down from the carriages where they were transported.

    calle calle
    Related to:
    • Photography

    Was this review helpful?

  • xaver's Profile Photo

    Plaza de los coches

    by xaver Written Mar 26, 2014

    4.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    This has been the former meeting place for slaves on market days. Today there are just horse carriages that wait for tourists who wish to take a ride through the historical centre. This is also a night life spot as after sunset the square becomes the stage of several jazz performers.

    plaza de los coches plaza de los coches
    Related to:
    • Architecture

    Was this review helpful?

  • xaver's Profile Photo

    History museum

    by xaver Written Mar 26, 2014

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    This museum is found within the palacio de la inquisicion that dates back to the XVIII century. It was opened in 1935 becaming the oldest museum of the city.Interesting are the maps showing the caribean during the colonial and pirate eras. One of the treasure you can fin here is the "witches weight" where you can learn about the odd question the "witches" were asked
    in the XVII century.

    museum
    Related to:
    • Museum Visits

    Was this review helpful?

  • xaver's Profile Photo

    Santa Catalina de Alejandria cathedral

    by xaver Written Mar 26, 2014

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    This cathedral is also known as the basilica menor and its construction began in XVII century. It was partially destroyed in 1586 after the attack of the British pirate Francis Drake.
    It is located in plaza de la inquisicion.

    cathedral
    Related to:
    • Architecture

    Was this review helpful?

  • xaver's Profile Photo

    Palace of inquisition

    by xaver Written Mar 26, 2014

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    The present and the past of this building can be described as a portrait of the evolution of Cartagena. Inquisition and its system of punishments were set up in 1610.
    The torture chambers are still preserved. This was also the first place where cultural events were held after the colonial era.

    inquisition inquisition inquisition inquisition inquisition
    Related to:
    • Museum Visits

    Was this review helpful?

  • xaver's Profile Photo

    The clock tower

    by xaver Written Mar 26, 2014

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    La torre del reloj is a neoghotic style building from the XIX century and still today it is the entrance to the walled city. It is the most representative architectural symbol of the city being its main gate since 1631.
    This tower was built by Luis Felipe Jaspe, a native of Cartagena.

    clock tower
    Related to:
    • Architecture

    Was this review helpful?

  • xaver's Profile Photo

    Ramparts

    by xaver Written Mar 26, 2014

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Ramparts were built because of the continuous onslaught that this city suffered in the XVII century, from pirates like the famous Francis Drake. The city could resist thanks to a fortification of walls 11 kilometers long. The walls today are almost intact and the crenels today became a place where teens repair from sun.

    teens in the crenels
    Related to:
    • Castles and Palaces
    • Architecture

    Was this review helpful?

Instant Answers: Cartagena

Get an instant answer from local experts and frequent travelers

31 travelers online now

Comments

Cartagena Things to Do

Reviews and photos of Cartagena things to do posted by real travelers and locals. The best tips for Cartagena sightseeing.

View all Cartagena hotels