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El Centro

All of Cartagena’s major museums, plazas, and churches are consolidated in El Centro. This part of the city starts at the Torre del Reloj and extends outwards, covering roughly 50 blocks filled with colorful colonial buildings draped with bougainvillea. If you have just one day in Cartagena, you will spend it in this neighborhood, as there is much to see and do here. The shopping, hotels, and restaurants in El Centro are the most expensive in the city. Still, it is worth the extra cash just to meander the quaintest and most breathtaking city centers in all of Colombia.

Other neighborhoods in Cartagena: Near Cartagena, GetsemanĂ­, San Diego and Bocagrande.

By Brenda Yun
I am a creative writer / surfer chick in need of adventure all the time. The only thing that keeps me grounded is my non-traveling, non-surfing pug...
15 Apr 2011

VIVA Colombia

Things to do in El Centro

Plaza de BolĂ­var

119504 Plaza BolĂ­var is the ideal place for relaxation in the center of the old city. At lunchtime, locals take advantage of the shade offered around the center statue of Simon BolĂ­var on his horse, and ...
City Plaza
El Centro, Cartagena, Colombia

La Catedral

120324 Construction of Cartagena’s first cathedral began in 1575, using the modest materials of wood and cane. Plans were revamped by Simón González, who performed the greater part of its construction ...
Historical Building
El Centro, Cartagena, Colombia

Iglesia de San Pedro Claver

120326First constructed in the 17th century by the Jesuits, this church\'s convent served as the residence for Saint Pedro Claver (1580-1654), a priest whose missionary work focused on helping slaves from ...
Historical Building
El Centro, Cartagena, Colombia

Museo del Oro ZenĂş

120327 Museo del Oro ZenĂş is an informative and surprisingly educational gold museum. It is nicely curated and features pre-Colombian gold from the ZenĂş nation that lived on the Golfo de Morrosquillo and ...
El Centro, Cartagena, Colombia

Museo de Arte Moderno

120328The Museo de Arte Moderno is a recent institution. Housed in two buildings — the first, built in the second half of the 17th century; the second added on during the end of the 19th century — it ...
El Centro, Cartagena, Colombia

Museo Naval del Caribe

120329 This extensive Museo Naval del Caribe recounts Cartagena’s remarkable naval history. The building comprises two wings, separated by gardens. The west, or colonial, wing was constructed in the ...
El Centro, Cartagena, Colombia

Portal de los Dulces

120331 Strange Caribbean sweets can be found throughout the day and evening along the Portal de los Dulces arcade. Here, stalls display glass jars stuffed with chocolates, flavored rock candy, coconut ...
El Centro, Cartagena, Colombia

Plaza Santo Domingo

120334The always-happening Plaza Santo Domingo is filled with classy cafés ideal for people-watching. The brick plaza and the shops that dot the periphery of the plaza seem much like they would have been ...
City Plaza
El Centro, Cartagena, Colombia

Teatro Heredia Adolfo MejĂ­a

120336If you are a fan of interpretive arts, the Teatro Heredia Adolfo MejĂ­a is a place not to be missed. Located in Plaza de la Merced in the old city, this theater was built in the 19th century on top ...
Movie & Theater
El Centro, Cartagena, Colombia

Plaza de la Aduana

120337 Plaza de la Aduana is Cartagena\'s oldest and largest plaza. It serves as the commercial heart of the city and the parade grounds for festival days. People mingle here throughout the day and into ...
City Plaza
El Centro, Cartagena, Colombia

El Torre del Reloj

120338 The yellow clock tower at Plaza de los Coches, above the main entrance gate into the walled city, is one of the primary emblems of Cartagena. Built in the early 18th century, the four-faced clock ...
El Centro, Cartagena, Colombia
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