Founded by the Spaniards in 1533, the city of Cartagena de Indias is without a doubt the most beautiful colonial city in Latin America. Located in Northern Colombia, right above the Caribbean Sea, the UNESCO has placed the historic area of Cartagena de Indias on the list of the most marvelous cultural heritage places of all mankind. Cartagena exhibits a splendid architecture that includes a mixture of castles, churches, side streets, night clubs, bars, and even up-scale restaurants. Each year, Cartagena de Indias welcomes millions of local and foreign travelers because of the International Film Festival, the Arts and Literature Fest HAY, and the frequent gatherings of Latin American presidents. Writers like Gabriel García Márquez, Germán Espinosa, and Luis Carlos López are just three of the literary voices of this city. Close to the marvelous beaches that Islas del Rosario offer and the other Colombian cities like Santa Marta and Barranquilla, Cartagena de Indias is an unbeatable travel and tourist destination. With its African, European, and Indigenous roots, Cartagena de Indias has been converted into one of the most dynamic cities in the world.
The Islas del Rosario are located amongst the most impressive islands and beaches in the world. This natural island haven is just one of forty-six natural national Colombian parks. Just like other national parks, the Islas del Rosario is a protected sanctuary to preserve the Colombian coral reefs located in the Caribbean Sea. The conservation and the protection of the Islas del Rosario make this a spectacular place to scuba dive, snorkel, bird watch, and see the native Colombian plant life. The white sand, caressed by the famous waves from the Sea of Seven color… A small seaquarium, together with top-notch hotels and cutting edge houses complement the landscape of the Islas del Rosario.
Taganga is a picturesque coastal Colombian city with some 30,000 inhabitants. In Taganga there are possibilities to enjoy freshly caught sea food regional dishes including: fried fish, rice with coconut, and cooking plantains accompanied by a tasty, cold Colombian beer. Amongst the activities that a tourist does in Taganga is sightseeing by going on short boat rides to experience the whereabouts, the fishing and diving there. And the city of Santa Marta was the place where “El Libertador” General Simón Bolívar died (Caracas, 1783- Santa Marta, 1830). The Quinta of San Pedro Alejandrino, a historic monument of Colombia that has been conserved with zeal and with respect, which is one of the most historically significant places in America. The Quinta of San Pedro Alejandrino allows for an imaginary journey into the 19th century due to its distinct features: the architecture, the furniture, dresses, hats, paintings, pictures, and weaponry.
This is a national park in the northern part of Colombia, located just twenty miles from the city of Santa Marta. Endemic native species live in Tayrona Park, a place with variety of contrasting climates: arid by the sea, and this park even includes mountains that are 900 meters above sea level. Tayrona Park is a paradigm for the Colombian biodiversity: 300 species of birds, 180 different species of mammals, 70 species of bats, 31 species of reptiles, 15 species of amphibians, 202 species of sponges, 471 species of crustaceans, 401 species of fresh and salt water fish, and 770 species of plants, just to name a few. Tayrona by itself is an archelogical site of great interest, because inside of it lie some of the ruins of “La Ciudad Perdida”?The Lost City. The Lost City was the home to the Tayrona Tribe, a tribe that shared linguistic similarities with native Caribbean groups. This tribe had astonishing cultural developments in politics, agriculture, mythology, and architecture. The city was founded around 800 A.D., 650 years before Machu Picchu was discovered according to the experts. Included within the remnants of The Lost City are traces of paths, agricultural terraces, foundations of houses, and carved stones with inscriptions. In this region, there are still three native descending tribes of the Tayrona People that are living in this park: the Arhuaco, Koguis, and Asario tribes.
The cultural vitality of Barranquilla is easy to show because of the famous annual festival in February-full of color, music, traditions, and dancing. During this Festival of Barranquilla, the city feels the contagious vibrations of rhythms like cumbia, mapalé, garabato, and others from African-American roots. Around the 1930’s and 40’s, right about the Caribbean and called The Sandy City, Barranquilla was an entrance for translations of books coming from Spain, Mexico, and particularly from Argentina. In the 40’s, and with the mentoring of Ramon Vinyes, a Catalan playwright and bookseller, La Cueva de Barranquilla was born. La Cueva was one of the literary and newspaper groups that helped Colombia enter the cultural modernity of the 20th century. Amongst the members of La Cueva, Alfonso Fueymayor, Alvaro Cepeda Sumudio, German Vargas, and Gabriel Garcia Marquez need to be mentioned. In his Living to Tell the Tale, García Márquez wrote: “Never did I feel, as I did in those days, so much a part of that city and the half-dozen friends who were beginning to be known as the Barranquilla Group in the journalistic and intellectual circles of the country. They were young writers and artists who exercised a certain leadership in the cultural life of the city, guided by the Catalan master Don Ramón Vinyes, a legendary dramatist and bookseller who had been consecrated in the Espasa Encyclopedia since 1924.” Finally, one last piece of data, not any less important: The famous singer and dancer Shakira was born in Barranquilla.