11 days in Cartagena & Santa Marta Itinerary

11 days in Cartagena & Santa Marta Itinerary

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Route & dates

11 days in Cartagena & Santa Marta Itinerary

Start: Mexico City
Fly:  9​h 45​min
1
Cartagena
— 5 nights
Drive:  3​h 30​min
2
Santa Marta
— 3 nights
Fly:  15​h
End: Mexico City

5
nights
Cartagena

Cartagena ©
The site of the continent's first Spanish colony, Cartagena retains much of its colonial flavor thanks to a World Heritage-listed old town, encircled by old walls and protected by imposing fortresses.
Get some cultural insight at Castillo San Felipe de Barajas and Plaza Santo Domingo. Step out of the city life by going to Playa Blanca and Oceanario. Change things up with a short trip to Aviario Nacional de Colombia in Isla Baru (about 50 minutes away). Spend the 27th (Sun) among aquatic life with a scuba or snorkeling tour. There's much more to do: steep yourself in history at Walled City of Cartagena, take an in-depth tour of Museo del Oro Zenu, make a trip to Plaza Bolivar, and take in the local highlights with Walking tours.

Quickly create a custom-made itinerary for Cartagena using our trip planner.

Mexico City, Mexico to Cartagena is an approximately 10-hour flight. Traveling from Mexico City to Cartagena, you'll lose 1 hour due to the time zone difference. When traveling from Mexico City in October, plan for somewhat warmer days in Cartagena, with highs around 38°C, while nights are much warmer with lows around 30°C. Cap off your sightseeing on the 31st (Thu) early enough to go by car to Santa Marta.

Things to do in Cartagena

Historic Sites Parks Outdoors

Side Trips

Isla Baru, Oceanario
Find places to stay Oct 26 — 31:
Highlights from your plan
Castillo de San Felipe de Barajas ©
Castillo de San Felipe de Barajas
Playa Blanca ©
Playa Blanca
Walled City of Cartagena ©
Walled City of Cartagena

3
nights
Santa Marta

Santa Marta ©
Many visitors begin their Santa Marta holiday, surrounded by urban clutter and heavy traffic, expecting little from the city in terms of historical importance.
Start off your visit on the 1st (Fri): admire the masterpieces at Quinta de San Pedro Alejandrino and then enjoy the sand and surf at Cristal Beach. On your second day here, take in the architecture and atmosphere at Catedral de Santa Marta, then take a tour by water with Boat Tours & Water Sports, then take in the architecture and atmosphere at Parroquia de Nuestra Senora de la Medalla Milagrosa, and finally contemplate the long history of Paseo El Camellon.

To find ratings, maps, reviews, and other tourist information, you can read our Santa Marta trip itinerary planning site .

Drive from Cartagena to Santa Marta in 3.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus. In October, plan for daily highs up to 38°C, and evening lows to 29°C. Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 3rd (Sun) to allow time for travel back home.

Things to do in Santa Marta

Outdoors Parks Beaches

Side Trip

Scuba & Snorkeling
Find places to stay Oct 31 — Nov 3:
Highlights from your plan
Cristal Beach ©
Cristal Beach
Scuba & Snorkeling
Playa Blanca ©
Playa Blanca

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