Cartagena, Colombia has been on my travel list for approximately 3 years now. Every year, I was convinced that I was going and I ended up everywhere BUT Cartagena. This year, I was determined that I was going to Cartagena no matter what! Once I found out that I would go to Orlando for work the week leading up to Memorial Day, I knew this was the perfect opportunity. I booked a flight with Avianca airline from Orlando to Cartagena and from there back to Boston. This was my first time flying Avianca airline and it was SUPER comfortable. We all received a complimentary blanket, pillow, and headphones and in addition to that we received a complimentary meal! Yes mam! This will not be my last time flying with Avianca!
I’ve became fond of visiting old towns when I travel, so I knew I wanted to stay in Walled City/Old Town in Cartagena. The new town is known as Bocagrande, it is very nice and has some of the hotels that Americans are familiar with such as Hyatt, Intercontinental, Holiday Inn and much more. That’s great and all, but I could go to Miami and have that hotel stay experience. I wanted the authentic Colombian experience through my hotel and I definitely got that. After some thorough research I booked a 5-night stay in a queen balcony room at Hotel Casa Del Curato in Old Town. This hotel is a small rustic, authentic 2- level hotel in the heart of Walled City. This was the perfect stay! The hotel staff were amazing and even helped me decide on restaurants. My booking included breakfast which was also great.
The location was perfect. I was walking distance to everything; walled city is so small it is pretty walkable. As a solo traveler it can be hard to get amazing pics so was super grateful for the front desk staff at my hotel, Jessica who took photos for me every single morning!
This was one of the best part of my trip. I went solo and wanted to make sure that I had a good guide. I found my tour guide Alex Rocha of Experience Real Cartagena on the FB group Black Travel Movement (BTM). He was highly recommended, so I decided to go with him and am glad that I did. Oh and if you are a traveler, you should absolutely join the FB group BTM. Want to learn more about the tours that I did with him? Go to my Touring Cartagena blog to learn more.
I am a foodie and am proud of it! I love good food and enjoy a good restaurant! Prior to my trip I was told that food in Cartagena was horrible! I took this advice with a grain of salt but I was lowkey sad. Well, I had a completely different experience! I only had one meal that I did not enjoy!
My breakfast at the hotel was fresh and tasteful everyday! I was full until about 1pm everyday. Every morning from 7-10 am breakfast was served, it included fresh fruits, fresh fruit juice, eggs to your liking, bread, tea and/or coffee.
Lunch was included in all of my tours so I didn’t have to worry about that. Lunch was usually a fried fish, with fried plantains, coconut rice and salad. It was pretty good and kept me full until dinner. The fish was good but I must say it was not as good as my Haitian fried fish! All my Haitians know what’s up!
At night, after resting from my tours I went out to dinner. None of the restaurants disappointed, the food was AMAZING! On the first night I went to La Cevicheria which was down the street from my hotel. This is a well-known restaurant as seen on Vogue Magazine, CNN and many more. It is definitely a touristy restaurant, but oh well the food was really good. I got the Peruvian Ceviche and it was finger liking good!
My next dining restaurant was at Maria. Listen, this restaurant did NOT disappoint. The decor was splendid and the food was the icing on top! I started off with the Mixed Ceviche, which was to die for, my main course was the Shrimp and Potatoes and I finished off with my dinner with a chocolate lava cake and ice cream for dessert. I kid you not, I wanted to go back to Maria every night! It was so good! If you visit Cartagena don’t miss Maria, it is worth every penny.
On my final night some fellow travelers and I were looking for a restaurant to have dinner. We walked around Walled City looked at menu and nothing really caught our attention until we approached Cuzso, a Peruvian Restaurant. I think the live band really caught our attention then we looked at the menu and was sold! That was a perfect decision the food was really good, tasty and flavorful. I got the mixed seafood in a creole sauce and let me tell you I wanted more that’s how good it was. My apologies, I do not have any pictures of my meal at this restaurant! You can check the Voyaj Kreyol IG page and see this restaurant in my Cartagena Insta Stories!
Food in Cartagena was really good for me! I was satisfied. If you go to Cartagena be sure to check out these restaurants and let us know what you think. Overall, my trip was amazing and I cannot wait to go back to this beautiful country and visit other cities.
Have you been to Cartagena? If so, share your experience with us below in the comments.
Until Next Time!
Steph & Vannie