This photo essay is our first day in Cartagena, Colombia: Boca Grande & Old Town. Cartagena was our first stop in our adventures to Colombia. What an introduction. We were staying in a district called Boca Grande on the 34th floor of a fantastic apartment building.
Our destination on our first day was Old Town, the original settlement of Cartagena, surrounded by walls to protect the city from pirates. Cannons and guard houses are evenly spread out on the top of the ramparts facing the Caribbean Sea. The forts were built in response to multiple attacks from pirates, most famously the sacking of Cartagena by Sir Francis Drake in 1586.
Cartagena was successfully defended after the construction of the forts. The biggest attack came from Edward Vernon in 1741. He led 25000 English soldiers and a fleet of 186 ships against 2500 poorly trained and ill-equipped men led by the legendary Blas de Lezo. Don Blas, a Spanish officer had already lost an arm, a leg and an eye in a previous battle. Although he saved Cartagena he lost his other leg in the battle and died soon after.
Today Cartagena’s Old Town is a draw for tourists from the cruise ships and is filled with hotels, restaurants, vendors, and shops. With beautiful colonial style buildings and colorful locals, Old Town is a fun place to spend the day wandering around the narrow streets.
Flags, flowers and colourful buildings, pretty plaza’s all made wondering the streets enjoyable.
Beautiful artwork everywhere. Metal street sculptures and a wonderful piece by Colombia famed Fernando Botero.