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Not to be confused with the Spanish city by the same name, Cartagena is a major port city on the Caribbean Coast of Colombia.
A vibrant place, filled with music and tradition, Cartagena has been an important port since it was founded in 1533. Boasting much of its original Spanish architecture, it's such a pleasure to explore this city. An incredibly historic town, there are so many key sites to see. For instance, there's Cartagena's colonial walled city and ‘Las Bovedas', the city's former dungeon that is now an artisan's centre. Be sure to check out the park ‘Plaza de Bolivar' whilst you're in Cartagena. Situated inside the walled city, it pays tribute to Simon Bolivar who liberated Cartagena. During the day, you'll find the park is full of people drinking coffee and watching the world go by. Come evening time groups of local Carthaginians gather in the park to demonstrate the local folklore dances. It's a fantastic atmosphere. If you just simply to rest, relax and soak up the sun, head to one of Cartagena's nearby beaches. ‘La Boquilla' and ‘Playa Blanca' are two of the best options, but there are several other stunning beaches as well.
If there's one thing that Colombia is famous for, it's coffee. You can purchase a package of the locally grown coffee beans in many of the shops. Emeralds are available for sale all over Cartagena, including polished and uncut loose emeralds. For hand-painted handicrafts, head to Las Bovedas de Santa Clara, San Jacinto Market.
The local currency is the Peso. Cartagena is 5 hours behind Greenwich Mean Time (GMT-5).
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