​Ursula Hosting, 2019

Duarte in Cartagena

March 16-24

Hello Duarte, 

I am presenting to you, a high level summary of what your trip to Cartagena with us would look like.  I am listing options for accommodations as well as things to do for you to experience Cartagena. ​

Possible Options / Cost (all fees included)

 

Hotel - Activities - Concierge Services  

  • 6 nights in Capellan Cartagena - King Bed (breakfast included), 2 nights in Islabela Hotel (Only breakfast included) - 2090 Euros

  • 5 nights in Capellan Cartagena - King Bed (Breakfast included), 3 nights in Coralina Hotel (All meals included, pick up at hotel) - 2555 Euros

Activities - Concierge Services Only  - 410 Euros 

All options would include:

​​

  • Activities are described

    • Cartagena - 4 activities included

    • Islas Del Rosario - N/A. Activities in the Islands should be coordinated with the hotel staff if desired.

  • Breakfast and Meals - See breakdown above

  • Private airport transfers in Cartagena

  • Transfers to and from Island Resort

  • Concierge services from the moment you reserve until the end of your trip.  Written guides of the city, recommendations for activities, bars, and restaurants, assistance with reservations, and more.  

 

Please take a look at some additional information and details below and let me know if you have any questions:  

Accommodations

  • I always recommend options located in the historic area of the city which is formed by two smaller area,  El Centro, and Getsemani (See Map)

  • Centro is the main area. the most traditional and classy.  Larger colonial houses, plazas, and hotels are located here.  As well as the main churches, museums, and shops.

  • Getsemani a bit more residencial/less affluent than El Centro. You can still see locals living in there, but it's become the hip part of town. Many call it the Brooklyn of Cartagena. Full of small bars, new boutique hotel, clubs, graffiti art, younger crowds. Some of my favorite restaurants, cafes, and bars are located here. 

Hotel Capellan, in Getsemani 

  • This one is one of the newest and higher rated places in town.  Great food, great service, very comfortable rooms as well. It is usually more than 200 Euros at night, but apparently there is some kind of special right now.    

  • The street where is located is busy, but also close to the heart of the Getsemani. 

  • Small but very enjoyable rooftop pool and bar. 

  • Depending on where you decide to stay in the Islands, you would be staying in this hotel either 5 or 6 nights.

  • CONS: Being located in Getsemani can be a CON to some people.  But this hotel is almost at the entrance of Getsemani, the walk into El Centro is just 5 minutes.  Getsemani has a lot of cute areas but also some under development. This hotel seems to be right in the middle of this; one cute street around one corner and one not so cute around the other. Still a nice area, and good restaurants both directions.   

Hotel in the Islands

  • Las Islas Del Rosario are a group of small keys/islands approximately 40 minutes aways from Cartagena. They are beautiful, but also in some ways very primitive. 

  • There are a couple of great options for accommodations like the two I presented (Isla Coralina, and Isla Bela) where they take great care of their guests, food is good, prices are fair, and the buildings are in good condition.  Still, they are located in places where there isn't running water or power lines. Please keep your mind open and be flexible as issues might arise. 

    • Also, there isn't hot water in the islands, but it is hot out there, so room temperature water ends up being very welcome

  • Transportation is limited. Few companies offer shuttles to and from these places. Resorts usually work with one in particular, the cost is extra, and there is usually just one time is available. 

  • Day trippers are very common. These resorts sell day passes to visitors who just want to go for a day. What I like about the two I recommend is that they are two of the few who assign places to day trippers, which means no fighting for space or chairs at the beach with them, and only sell a specific number of passes.  Those are big pluses. You should not be bothered by them.     

  • Once you are there, please work with their staff to arrange extra activities: scuba diving, snorkeling, jet skies, island boat tours, and one that I highly recommend is the night visit to the bioluminescent bay in Isla grande.  Swimming in it at night is an experience like no other.

At this moment, after reviewing availability of the hotels, we have two options (click on name for website)

Possible Itinerary and Experiences 

I am happy to show you some of the activities clients and I enjoy the most.  Please take a look and let me know what you think:

  •  Saturday, March 16th 

    • 17:30 - Arrival - Pick up at the airport. ​

      • Money exchange - It is recommended to exchange some money at the airport.  You can do it all there, or save some to exchange later in the city where the rate is usually better. ATMs offer the best rate, but be aware of your banks international and ATM charges. 

    • After check-in​, take your time to settle in and get familiar with your surroundings. Take a walk of Getsemani or head to El Centro. 

    • Dinner can be in either of these areas. I will send recommendations for both, and can make reservations for you. 

  • Sunday, March 17th
    • 09:00 AM - Departure for the Islands. Regardless of the hotel you choose, it seems you would be leaving this date. The Pier where you would need to take the transfer boat from, is only a 5 minute walk from the hotel at the terminal.  I will provide additional directions as needed.  Departure is usually at this time, please be there 30 minutes before.  you would be traveling Sunday the 17th. Your transfer boat can be 

  • Options for Activities You Can Enjoy after you Return to Cartagena on Either Tuesday March 19th or Wednesday March 20th. 
    • 03:00 to 04:00 PM - Return from the Islands -  You would be returning into the city around this time. I don't recommend a scheduled activity this date as you would be tired and happy to hjust spend time in a hot shower and room with A/C. 
      • If you do feel like exploring the town, I recommend heading to Cafe del Mar.  This is the bar/restaurant with the best view and vibe in the old town to spend the sunset as it is located on top of the wall. Have a drink or two before dinner here. It can be crowded and full of tourists sometimes, but yet it is the best option.  If it is not your vibe then continue to walk on the wall towards Baluarte de San Francisco; a more calm and classy establishment across from Hotel Santa Teresa. 
    • 08:00 AM - Private History Bike Tour (2 hrs) -  I would recommend this one for the morning after you return to Cartagena.  Given the strength of the sun between late morning and early afternoon, I recommend this tour either at 8AM or at 4 PM.  Enjoy the ride, the view, and the beauty of Cartagena streets. This is the perfect way to get to see most of the colonial area, learned history, and spot places  where you would like to return later during the week.  This can also be in group. 
    • 08:00 AM - Private Bazurto Market Tour​ (2 Hrs) - This is a real as it gets. The local market where the city gets its produce, meats, and everything else in between.  It is becoming more popular among tourists but it not for everyone.  it is beautiful and colorful, but also real. Not upgraded to comfort.  It is an unforgettable experience, and we have the best guide for the job! 
    • Colombian Rum Tasting​ (1hr - 1.5hrs) - This is a great way to learn about one of the best products from Colombia and the culture around it.  Hosted by one of the best bartenders around with a great selection of Colombian Rum. Try amazing rums, have some appetizers, and enjoy of an insightful and entertaining time. This can be in group or private.  Private would be more exclusive and therefore more expensive. specially since it is just one person.  
    • Sunset Catamaran Cruise Cocktail (2 hrs) - This is one of the newest offerings in Cartagena, A perfect way to end the afternoon and enjoy the city's skyline.  Sunsets in Cartagena are beautiful, and this is the best seat in the house. Cocktail, appetizers, and a glass of wine is included.​ In group. 
    • Bird Watching (2.5 hrs) - let us take you to mangroves and large swamps were migratory and local birds hangout.  You will be on board a canoe, and led by a local expert natural guide. This would take place either at 5:30AM or 4:00PM.  Transportation, guide, and cold coconut water included.  In group. 
    • 05:00 PM - Stand Up Paddle at Sunset - Another great way to welcome the sunset while exploring another side of the city.  No previous experience is required, chilled vibe.  You would need to travel towards El Laguito (10 min cab ride. Cost of cab not included) to the surf club.  There you can enjoy the local beach and a bar before or after if you want.  In group. 
      ​​​
  • Sunday, March 24th 
    • ​16:00  - Airport Pick- up - Our driver will be ready to pick you up at this time for your 18:40 Flight.  

Options for Additional Activities

  • Mud Volcano - Transportation and entrance to Totumo (Mud Volcano)  

  • Coffee Roasting and Tasting -  

  • Private Street Food tour - Eat your way through old town. Guided

  • Mangrove Fishing 

  • Museums - Free. No guide needed. I provide recommendations. 

THANK YOU