We arrived in Cartagena on a Sunday night to finalise the importation of our sidecars in Colombia. This administrative task took a while but we still had time to enjoy the colorful streets of this pretty city.
Situated on the Caribbean Coast, the weather in September is warm (30°C) and humid (80%). The historic centre is fortified with pretty colorful streets giving the opportunity of strolling along in a Spanish atmosphere.
Indeed, by walking around the port, the different places or the fortifications, we can notice the Spanish conquistador influences.
At midday, after walking all the day, it’s time for a lunch break. We discover the pleasure to taste the “Menu del Dia”, offered in the most of restaurants. This menu includes a soup and a main dish for a very reasonable price (around 15,000 COP which means 4,5€). This menu highlights the local speciality which is the asado fish (fish cooked on the bbq). A delight!
As the sidecar import has been longer than we thought and as Cartegena had no more secrets for us, we decided to go to Isla de Barú and more specifically its “Playa Blanca”. This beautiful beach with white sand is crowded by the tourists between 11h30 and 15h30 (slot times for the boats coming from Cartagena). Nevertheless, the landscape is as beautiful as a photo on a postcard. The sea has a gorgeous turquoise colour and is as warm as a bath! This is a worthwhile experience but only if you can stay overnight. You can enjoy the quite beach at the dusk and a lonely swim in the sea when you wake up. This experience allow us to enjoy the simple life with no internet connection, in very basic hotels with no running water and electricity during daylight due to the geographic constraints.
After spending 2 days with sandy feet, it’s time to hit the road! Hands on the handlebars and helmet on the head, let’s go to Pamplona which is a city next to the Venezuelan border.
OUR FAVOURITE PLACES
Where to sleep?
Casa del Pozzo
A youth hostel, 500m away from the clock tower next to the pretty Trinity Place which becomes full of lights at the dusk.
Paradise del Mama Ruth
This hotel is located on the paradisiacal beach of Playa Blanca. Offering rooms with double beds in huts on bamboo stilts. The comfort is basic (no running water and electricity during daylight) but you can enjoy to wake up with sandy feet and to swim in a turquoise sea at 37°C…
Where to eat?
La Cocina de Carthagena
A restaurant in the historic town centre with an enjoyable courtyard. . The menu offers many fish options including the “Menu del Día” for an affordable price.
A restaurant next to the Trinity place which doesn’t seem attractive but there is a pretty courtyard and a very welcoming staff. We opted for their nice “Menu del Día” which includes a fish or cheese soup and a fish dish.