As a result Cartagena (known as Cartagena de Indias) was targeted for attack by pirates and privateers. In defense, the city constructed fortifications and elaborate walls (over 50 feet thick) which have protected its citizens for over 300 years. Today in the magnificent old city "El Centro", you can stroll winding, cobbled streets, explore fortresses and dungeons and view some of the finest examples of Spanish colonial architecture in the world.
Many restorations house superb restaurants, taverns and dazzling dance clubs that define the term "hot"! Shopping is among the finest in the Caribbean, including that for emeralds- the best in the world from the mines of Chivor and Muzo are here in affordable abundance.
In absolute contradiction to the historic atmosphere of El Centro is the trendy Boca Grande area where you'll find the main beach, restaurants, discos, nightclubs and casinos. Dining is out of this world with everything from North American favourites to the best in seafood, Italian, French and Oriental dishes. Venues are equally spectacular; such as the Club de Pesca where you'll dine on the edge of Cartagena bay perched on the ramparts of a restored 16th-century fort, and beautiful LaVitrola, near the oldest square in the city, and an ideal spot to arrive by romantic, horsedrawn carriage.
The popular religious holiday of Semana Santa (Easter) is celebrated with great vigor and joy; you can anticipate busy beaches with some hotel activities limited.
FREE EMERALD FOR CARTAGENA PASSENGERS
Colombia is known as the world's largest producer of emeralds; beautiful gems known as "green fire"! To whet your appetite , Caribe Jewellers in Cartagena will give a free natural emerald weighing .10 to 1.5 k to each couple (worth an estimated $US30 to$50). Make sure to visit Caribe Jewellers in person to claim your free emerald! (offer subject to availability).
Your Cartagena Package Holiday includes: