A tour of the old city

Cartagena Travel Blog

 › entry 46 of 125 › view all entries

Wow wow wow... Cartagena has truly lived up to its reputation as a beautiful city.  This city is truly unbelievable.  As I stroll through the archways and under the butresses of the colonial structures I am constantly awestruck.  The lamp lined streets and balconied houses are reminiscient of old Europe.  Every few blocks there is a square with a grand statue or two or a plaza surrounded by cafes and people selling local goods.

Cartagena is a mix of flavours though and I am constantly reminded that I am in a developing country.  There are plenty of different kinds of people of all colours.  The smells here are so powerful as well; you can walk by a bakery and have a blast of fresh pastries and bread and then in two seconds be knocked over by the pungent smell of raw sewage then be drawn in by the smell of fresh pizza or an ocean breeze.

We happen to be staying in an area of town that is not that beautiful and has some very poor people on the street.  During the day we walk from our hostal and explore the old city.  Today with some great Germans that I have become close with we went to go play pool.  This, along with the baseball game in Granada, will likely be one of my favourite cultural experience memories.  The place was full of men, about one hundred people and most of them old guys.  It was great.  Each of them had their three fingered pool glove and they were wearing Havana type shirts.  A couple guys introduced themselves to us and we chatted for a couple hours while we played.

At night I went out on the town with a group of guys from the US and Australia.  We tried to find a nice discoteca to go dancing in but each bar we went to or were brought to by a local wasn´t really a disco but more like a brothel.  The unfortunate reality of many cities I have been to in latin america.  Costa Rica was particularly bad and Panama too. 

All things combined I am enjoying my stay in Cartagena.

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photo by: vulindlela