Last Friday I decided to heed the advice of locals and get out of Sincelejo during the presidential election weekend since that's historically when kidnappings spike. So I did the 3-hour drive to Cartagena and spent the weekend walking around town taking in the sights.
The city's official name is Cartagena de las Indias as it was founded in 1533 by Pedro de Heredia as a major center of Spanish settlement in the Americas. Many colonial buildings can be found in the walled Old City, including the Palace of the Inquisition, the cathedral, the Convent of Santa Clara (now an amazing hotel) and a Jesuit college. St. Peter Claver, patron saint of the slaves worked in and from the Jesuit college. I believe it's the most beautiful colonial city in all of Latin America and you can spend hours just wandering around the old city getting lost. The weather is hot (winter) and hotter (summer) so make sure you pack shorts and t-shirts...
An hour away by boat are the Rosario Islands which are great for sitting on the beach, with your chair sunk in the water up to your waist, reading a book for hours at a time. I did exactly that all day on Saturday and as such have no pictures to share. It was nice to fall asleep and worry about nothing more than drooling on my new book.
Many of you will remember Cartagena from the movie "Romancing the Stone" with Michael Douglas and Kathleen Turner. You're unlikely to see any crocodiles in the moat around the fort, yet I recommend Cartagena as a great travel destination for the more adventurous travel set!