Atardecer is a word that I quickly learnt when I moved to Cartagena. The definition in Spanish could be: "Llegar la última hora de la tarde, cuando disminuye la luz del sol." Twilight, nightfall, dusk, whatever you want to call it, in Cartagena atardacer is the best part of the day. The temperature gets more bearable, and you can finally truly enjoy being outside. After a day of work or tourist touring in the heat, it is time to cool down. And what could be better than to sip a cold beer, a glass of wine or a tasty cocktail, on a terrace in the early evening breeze? Well, nothing really. These are my favorite atardecer-spots, go try out and share your experience in the comments.
1. El Baron Café
When I'm craving for good wine in Cartagena (I come from France, pardon me for being difficult), I sprint to El Baron, which is also my favorite people-watching place. Not to mention their excellent tapas, friendly service, tranquil atmosphere, and the stunning San Pedro Claver - church in the background. Surrounded by colonial-style houses, and a horse carriage passing by, it could not get more Cartagena than this. Perfection.
Address: Plaza San Pedro Claver, Cra. 4 No. 31-7, Centro Histórico Cartagena - Website here
Ps. I just love this photo I accidentally took of an extremely cute Canadian couple. It made me smile when they told me that they had been in Colombia for already three weeks, but hadn't really gotten out of Cartagena region - simply because they had fallen in love with it.
2. Café del Mar
Some say too touristic and crowded, I say everyone wants to go to Café del Mar because it's great. Come early to pick a good spot, order a Piña Colada, and just relax. Views over the ocean at sunset, do I have to say more? This is a must-do in Cartagena.
Address: Baluarte de Santo Domingo, Centro Histórico Cartagena - Website here
3. Malagana Café & Bar
A hidden location upstairs of a traditional-looking tiny restaurant, on one of the main streets in Getsemani. It feels like having your own little rooftop terrace, where to gather with friends for a laid-back start of an evening. Happy Hour until 8pm: two cocktails for the price of one. Excellent food as well, especially the ceviche and fish tacos.
Address: Calle Tripita y Media #31-55, Getsemani Cartagena - Website here
Don't get confused by the somber downstairs bar, but walk straight up to the terrace. That is the place to be. Original and creative cocktails, casual but chic ambiance. Located in the heart of the walled city, you can easily continue to a nearby restaurant, or clubbing in one of the popular places at Torre de Reloj.
Address: Calle del Colegio #34-24, Centro Histórico Cartagena - Website here
5. Casa de la Cerveza
A beautiful panoramic view over the bay between Manga, Getsemani and Bocagrande, and a nice change of scenery if you are getting tired with the walled city. As the name says, beer lovers will love this place.
Address: Calle del Arsenal, Getsemani Cartagena - Website here
Drinking and partying in Cartagena is not very cheap, unfortunately. On terraces, rooftops, and any kinds of nice bars in general, you can usually get a beer for 7000-10 000COP (2-3€), whereas wine and cocktails are from 15000COP (4.5€) on. Luckily many places have a Happy Hour! And you know what, even if you may spend more money than what you would have preferred, it is so worth it. At times, we all need to splurge a little bit, enjoy a careless evening with old or new Cartagena friends, and live life to the fullest.
However, if you really want to save money, you will thank me for this last tip. Buy a few beers from the supermarket, climb up on top of the wall in ciudad amurrallada, and choose your sunset-view spot. Add some friends and Caribbean music, and have fun. Your best Cartagena-cocktail is ready to be consumed.
Thank you S, A, D, M, D, S, A, S, F, J, A, T, and K.... for modelling/photographing, and especially thank you for a lovely time together!
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I'm Emilia, Finnish-Parisian, a recent Master's graduate. I'm currently traveling around the Caribbean and on a volunteering mission in Colombia. I'm passionate about writing, music and different kinds of sports. I can't wait to discover new places and cultures - and share my adventures with you!