CARTAGENA, the Magic Realism City

Cartagena invincible: this city lives from its past, but also reinvents itself in the New World, maintaining its beauty and being known as the best jewel of the Caribbean.

Some experiences are so intense as helicopter flights to Cartagena das Indias. The helices break the scorching heat while landing at Rafael Nuñez International Airport, or private ships arrive discreetly with some international celebrities.

On the right, the Caribbean Sea, where, in colonial times, the privateer Francis Drake English sneaked to loot their treasures and where had anchored 2,000 cruise tourists who found Gabriel García Márquez. “One by one, they made a row to take a picture with me as if I were a living monument,” and actually he is considered one of the most significant authors of the 20th century and one of the best in the spanish language, years later. On the left, the walled city, with its narrow streets, houses with their long blooming balconies and splendid domes. These walls, that surround much of the Historical Center, save legends of pirates and privateers.


Meeting Cartagena is impossible not to feel the musical notes of the classical music festival, conversations about Hay Festival, the flavor of each dish that stands among the best in the country, the windows of their rooms exhibiting high fashions paintings and, of course, every detail of the hotels and rental houses that are above the most demanding lists of world tourism.

All the streets around old-town Cartagena look like this. The colors vary, but they are often strong, and lots of nice balconies. HDR of 3 handheld shots. This time Photomatix was not able to crisply align the images, but I insisted in using it because it is the only shot Ihave of this nice blue building. Cranked up the smart sharpen to make up the fuzziness, used Freaky Detail again (, which is similar to Nik Tonal Contrast. For scenes with walls like these I prefer freaky detail because Tonal Contrast enhances the roughness of the walls too much. I masked the sky and street when applying freaky detail. Some dodging on the shadowed walls, and then Nik Skylight filter to give it a more sunny look.

There, in the twilight that has inspired singers and poets, the Caribbean is infinite. Cartagena, so deep, so intimate, so secret, is the slowness and dignity of an old colony. No one could describe in words the infinite diversity of colors and shades of its sunsets. Coming to Cartagena, you will “dive” into its unique atmosphere, it is a sensation that can not be given a specific name. It’s something that comes from the past, is the time that has stopped in a moment of absolute happiness. In Cartagena, the time travels back, and transmits the oldest and the purest sense of immortality.

Cartagena becomes your accomplice, because it encourages you to untie the ropes that keep you immobile.


Economy & tourism

Everything is there: Cartagena offers advantages and conditions to tourists and businessmen to invest and choose: human talent, location, sea, peace, beauty and luxury. And its privileged geographical position, is also one of the reasons for the growing tourism and business, national and international.
“Cartagena, the fantastic” as is called in a song of Carlos Vives, is very attractive for small, medium and large companies, who see it as a huge potential for the development of its expansion projects and positioning of their brands. Consequently, tourism, luxury tourism and its demand grows rapidly.

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