At first glance, Cartagena is an architecturally beautiful city. The people seems friendly and the amenities are endless.
The city began with 200 people in 1533. During the remainder of the 16th century there was rapid growth. A major factor was the gold in the tombs of the Sinú Culture. After those tombs were completely plundered, the inhabitants began to scatter to the countryside and to establish themselves as farmers, and the population of the city decreased.
A little later, the city had fewer than 2000 inhabitants and one church; the dramatically increasing fame and wealth of the prosperous city turned it into an attractive plunder site for pirates and corsairs–French and English privateers licensed by their king. Thirty years after its founding, the city was pillaged by the French nobleman Jean-François Roberval. The city set about strengthening its defences and surrounding itself with walled compounds and castles.
Jim, Blieu, Darren and I ventured into El Centro, the old town and checked out the food, the buildings and the shopping.
it was a 7000 peso cab ride from the marina to El Centro, ( an equivalent of about $3 CDN) for the 4 of us to jump into a Toyota Prius- type cab and adventure Northward.
Apparently, shoes is a favorite of Colombians as well. There are a TON of shoe stores.. everywhere. I wish I could still wear any shoe I desired… I would have been in heaven 4 years ago!
Lunch was just as amazing. At a whole $4 CDN we had a full lunch with a delicious soup, salad, piece of meat ( or fish) rice, and lemonade. We were stuffed.
And after, we couldn’t help but to stop and get a local indulgency.
A few days in the city and we had to head out as our water supply was low, and we couldn’t make water in the dirty harbor. We headed southwest to the Rosario islands. A quaint group of islands covered in private homes, these islands were a quiet retreat from the bustling city harbor for a few nights.
We swam, made water, dinghied around, and checked it out. There are homes built on tiny atolls surrounding these islands, your own little piece of paradise. If you want a quiet holiday, this would definitely give you a piece of tranquility.
Back to the city we returned, to get ready to fix some things, provision to head to San Blas and check out the city life for a few more days.
Jim and Blieu were to depart from Cartagena, it was a pleasure having them on board, and we will welcome them back anytime!
Just a few more shots of this beautiful city before we leave you!