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Old 01-11-2011, 12:05 AM
 
Location: Los Angeles
749 posts, read 1,515,406 times
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I will be spending 5 nights (4 FULL Days) in Cartagena, Colombia in Feb. 2011.

My question is should I try to make it to Santa Marta for 1 or 2 Nights?

I have NEVER been to Colombia so I want to see Cartagena for at least 1 or 2 days or so.

So I could spend 3 or 4 nights in Cartagena and 1 or 2 nights in Santa Marta. Is this trying to do too much in ONE trip or is this reasonable? or should I just stay in Cartagena ALL 5 nights.

My rationale for Santa Marta is to get away from all the "TOURISTS" in Cartagena and soak up a town with a more "Colombian" flavor, granted it is still a "tourist" town (but more Colombian than international tourist destination).

Thanks for any input.

Last edited by BluSpark; 01-11-2011 at 12:19 AM..
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Old 01-11-2011, 03:39 PM
 
Location: Victoria TX
42,670 posts, read 69,795,602 times
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Do it in the daytime. Major port cities in any country, particularly developing countries, are not the kinds of places you want to wander around after dark. Be very careful who you drink with, and don't accept drinks from strangers.
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Old 01-11-2011, 09:32 PM
 
Location: Los Angeles
749 posts, read 1,515,406 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jtur88 View Post
Do it in the daytime. Major port cities in any country, particularly developing countries, are not the kinds of places you want to wander around after dark. Be very careful who you drink with, and don't accept drinks from strangers.
Have you been to Santa Marta?

Agreed...no drinks from strangers.
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Old 02-11-2011, 07:37 PM
 
Location: Juliff, Texas
3 posts, read 16,661 times
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If this is in time, I have been to both Cartagena and Santa Marta many times. Dont miss Santa Marta. Hotel Tomaca is good there, wonderful beaches by far better than Cartagenas. It is an easy 3 hour bus ride, change buses in Barranquilla. Yes do it in the day. Use copies of your passport and keep the original safely tucked away. Hopefully you speak spanish, english is not as common in SM as Cartagena. I took my Colombian fiancee' (now my wife) on this trip, very very romatic those places. Have a great trip
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Old 12-23-2011, 09:49 PM
 
Location: NC
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I visited Cartagena for a week and loved it. I stayed in the Old City section and there were so many tourists. I felt very safe there even at night and I am a single lady! I don't know anything about Santa Marta. God bless.
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Old 12-24-2011, 07:13 AM
 
Location: Viña del Mar, Chile
16,416 posts, read 24,531,929 times
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I think doing 3 days in Cartagena and 2 or 3 days in Santa Marta would work out just fine. Cartagena is a very safe and tourist friendly city, but outside of the nice places, it is probably one of the more poverty stricken places. It is very rough for the people there, and a tourist does not belong in places where people are struggling even for food.

I didn't go to Santa Marta, and that is one regret I have about my trip to Colombia, I'd really recommend it!

Both Cartagena and Santa Marta are RELATIVELY safe compared to the rest of the country, but that by no means, means you can completely let your guard down. As jtur said, absolutely do not accept drinks from strangers, there is a real problem of that in Colombia.
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Old 12-25-2011, 11:20 AM
 
2,930 posts, read 5,928,977 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BluSpark View Post
I will be spending 5 nights (4 FULL Days) in Cartagena, Colombia in Feb. 2011.

My question is should I try to make it to Santa Marta for 1 or 2 Nights?

I have NEVER been to Colombia so I want to see Cartagena for at least 1 or 2 days or so.

So I could spend 3 or 4 nights in Cartagena and 1 or 2 nights in Santa Marta. Is this trying to do too much in ONE trip or is this reasonable? or should I just stay in Cartagena ALL 5 nights.

My rationale for Santa Marta is to get away from all the "TOURISTS" in Cartagena and soak up a town with a more "Colombian" flavor, granted it is still a "tourist" town (but more Colombian than international tourist destination).

Thanks for any input.
In the atlantic coastal areas, you will find the caribbean colombian culture, but it is far from representing all colombian culture.

I like Santa Marta a lot because it is a quite town but I can understandsome people might find it boring.

Another thing to be aware of is tap water. In big ciies like Bogota and Medellin tap water is excellent but not in the coast. Dont even brush your teeth with tap water. It is safe though to buy lemonade and ice drinks, they use filtered water but if you buy bottle water they reccomend to buy buy water with gas or whatever is called.
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