Cathedral of Saint Catherine of Alexandria in Cartagena de Indias
Cartagena offers luxury, romance and excellence for world travelers. Photo: Manuel Fernando Herrera Figueroa.

Cartagena and its must-see places

In addition to being the star of the last World Travel Awards, 'La Heroica' has several locations recognized with important awards.


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Despite tourism being one of the hardest hit industries in the world by the pandemic, Cartagena, Colombia has managed to preserve its special atmosphere and unique charm that make it a favorite destinations of travelers around the planet.

An award-winning city

Amid a controlled economic reactivation process, last October, the city was chosen as the “Leading Honeymoon Destination” in South America for the third consecutive year, above beautiful places such as Buenos Aires and San Carlos de Bariloche in Argentina, Fernando de Noronha, Paraty and Rio de Janeiro in Brazil, and the Galapagos Islands in Ecuador.

The important recognition came from the World Travel Awards, the most important tourism awards in the world since 1993, which also awarded Cartagena the following recognitions:

  • South America's leading cruise port 2021, above the ports of Pier Mauá in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Buenos Aires, Argentina, Montevideo, Uruguay, and Valparaíso, Chile.
  • The recognition for the "Leading Hotel in South America 2021" was awarded to the Hotel Sofitel Legend Santa Clara, a one-of-a-kind spot in the Historic Center of the city.
More awards

Cartagena is an ideal destination for romance and couples. This was clear to the team behind the Condé Nast Traveler Awards 2021, which awarded the Hotel Casona del Colegio — a restored republican house located in the Historic Center — as "Best for Romance" in Central and South America.

It is worth noting that these awards are given by vote of travelers, who are seduced year after year by the dreamy charm of the historic and diverse city.

Another place recently recognized internationally is the Alquímico bar. In 2020, it was highlighted with the Ketel One Sustainable Bar Award and entered the list of the 50 Best Bars in the World (position 47) thanks to the promotion of local culture and, as is pointed out in the publication, to “an authentic care for the environment and society.”

2021 also brought the bar, located in a spectacular three-story mansion with different environments, a new recognition thanks to the passion, joy and professionalism of the employees. The bar was number 41 of the "Top 500 Bars," a publication that is based on the opinions and reviews of users around the world and highlights being "created by the people, for the people." 

They know wine

2020 brought not only difficulties and challenges for the city's restaurant industry, but also recognition for the "Best Tablecloth Restaurant in the country" — according to the local La Barra awards.

Platos en el restaurante Candé de Cartagena. Foto: @Marieldeviaje  

The Candé restaurant, serving 100% Cartagena cuisine, was awarded by the North American publication WineSpectator, which has existed for more than 40 years and has millions of readers. The kitchen, which promotes local products and recipes, received the “A Cup of Excellence” award, a special recognition for its collection of wines.

Hotels, restaurants and bars are desired and highly valued by travelers around the world, highlighting the qualities of a city that, like Cartagena, wants to continue providing unique and unforgettable experiences to all who visit.


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