One Day in Cartagena, Columbia – A Colorful, Independent Cruise Excursion

I had only one day in Cartagena, Columbia on my Panama Canal Cruise and I made the most of it by exploring the city’s UNESCO listed sights on my own.

The first stop on my Ruby Princess full transit Panama Canal cruise was Cartagena, Columbia. This was my first visit to Columbia, and I would only have six hours in port so I was going to make the most of it. My focus for my one day in Cartagena was on the UNESCO listed Old Town and the nearby Fort Castillo de San Filipe de Barajas.

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PhotoPOSTcard: Trying to Make a Living

A crippled beggar hopes for a few coins at the entrance to a church in Cartagena, Columbia. Across the street, a street vendor eats his lunch as he waits for passers-by to purchase a painting. It’s just another day for the locals in Cartagena, trying to make a living.

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PhotoPOSTcard: Pollys Want a Cracker

At the port of Cartagena, you have to pass through an Eco Park on the way back to boarding the cruise ship. After walking all morning with the hot sun beating down on me, it was a lovely, shaded, stroll that was not very long. The park has lots of peacocks, macaws and flamingos, along with shops and eateries.  Even if you do not plan on going into the city, getting off the ship and exploring this area is a pleasant distraction.

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PhotoPOSTcard: Waiting to Make a Dollar in Cartagena

The palenqueras of Cartagena  – black women in bright costumes with baskets of fruit on their head – have become a colorful national symbol for their country. All around the old town of Cartagena, I saw these women waiting to have their photos taken in exchange for a tip. Once they saw a potential opportunity, they would put the bowls of fruit on their head, flare their skirts and give a huge smile – and then reach out for the expected dollars.

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Living Like Royalty on a Princess Cruise – A Ruby Princess Review With Photos

In this Ruby Princess review I share detailed information with lots of photos from my recent cruise including a review of my cabin, public spaces and food options.

Some days I wish I had a maid. And a cook. And since I am dreaming, lets add a chauffeur and a gardener to the list. I’ve probably watched Downtown Abbey once too often and read too many books set in Britain’s golden age where the hired help does all the work and the Lord and Lady of the manor just get to have fun.

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