Usefull Tips...

About Cartagena de Indias...
Usefull Tips
Cartagena de Indias
Castillo de San Felipe

Cartagena is located above the sea level with a wet tropical climate that ranges between 28° C and 32° C. The city does not have seasons; however, has a dry season (June to August).



Due to its geographical position, the city of Cartagena has no seasons, but a humid tropical climate with two rainy seasons in the months of April, May, October and November.

On average, the temperature of the city ranges 32ºC and 28ºC, with a humidity of 90%.


Official Currency


The official currency of Cartagena de Indias and Colombia is the Colombian peso.

While some establishments at the Historical Center accept dollars, is recommended to have Colombian pesos available, or credit cards enabled for international use.

If you want to know the current value of the Colombian peso CLICK HERE


Time Zone


Cartagena de Indias is in the time zone UTC / GMT -5.
This means that the city is five hours behind Greenwich Mean Time (GMT), two hours ahead of Eastern Standard Time (US & Canada).

The city (neither Colombia) applies the Daylight Saving Time (DST) and there is no time difference between Cartagena and the capital of Colombia (Bogotá)


Touristic Information Points


Walk easily through Cartagena and get free tools for better orientation. Visit the PITS where you can find information about the area and free tools for better orientation during your visit to Cartagena.

Center, Plaza de la Aduana (Customs Plaza)
Phone number. 6601583
Monday to Sunday: 9:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m. / 2:00 p.m. - 6:00 p.m.
Malecon Avenue, in front of Park Flanagan
(Next to the Police Station diagonal to Hotel Caribe) 
Monday to Sunday: 9:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m. / 2:00 p.m. - 6:00 p.m.
Monday to Sunday: 8:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. / 1:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Depending on the arrival of Cruises.
Monday to Saturday: 7:00 AM - 10:00 p.m.
Sunday: 9:00 am - 5:00 pm



The city has 4 major tourist areas:

Historical Center and Getsemaní (Gethsemane)


Modern Area (Bocagrande, Laguito and Castillogrande)


North Area (Airport)


Manga (Port)


Within each of the areas, all distances can be covered on foot, and additionally, the city has facilities to rent bicycles and segways.

Should you wish to move to another area, we recommend taking a taxi, identified by yellow color, in which paths have a duration of no more than fifteen minutes.

For those wishing to take a kind of alternative transportation, the city counts with two story Red Buses, Trolley buses, chivas (typical bus), and carriages, on which you can take a tour by the city and its main monuments



Within the historic center and Bocagrande, many sidewalks have been adapted for handicapped. Similarly, most of the hotels (most of them 4 and 5 stars), have infrastructure and rooms specially adapted for people with some condition of spatial mobility.


Events and Special Activities


Cartagena de Indias is a diverse city, and even if you already have go over the streets, you'll always find something fun and different to do during your visit.

Meet our CALENDAR OF EVENTS to have information about the activities that are scheduled during the days planned for your visit and know the detailed scheduling, pre-registration and get details of those events.


Colombian laws


If you want to spend a night in Cartagena de Indias and Colombia, should know that the legal age to purchase and consume alcoholic beverages is 18 years, confirmed by identification.

Within the country is prohibited the purchase and consumption of hallucinogenic substances, as well as smoking indoors. If you are in a hotel or restaurant, always consult the smoking area.

The city and most of its tourist facilities, such as sustainable destination, have the campaign "LA MURALLA SOY YO" and have adopted the Code of Conduct "The Code" for the Protection of Children and Adolescents Against commercial Sexual Exploitation, which is penalized by Colombian law.

For more information on this program visit the web site


Tips and Taxes Paying


Although not is mandatory, workers in the service industry (hotels, restaurants, guides, transportation services, among others.), Strive to make all visitors to feels welcomed, so the recognition of his work is the tip, which will be appreciated by them. The prices suggested by services are as follows:

  • Porter / Bellman: $ 1 to get a taxi
  • Bellman: $ 1- $ 2 per bag
  • Waitress: $ 1 - $ 5 per visit day
  • Taxi Drivers: 10% of the fare
  • Hairdresser: 10% of the total service
  • Tips for other service personnel such as janitors, receptionists, tour guides, among others, will always be welcome.
  • In the case of small restaurants in the box you will find a container to deposit tips, which are shared among all employees.
  • For other restaurants, upon invoice presentation, you will be asked to cancel 10% of the total value of the account as volunteering. This value can be accepted, modified or refused by the customer, according to service grading.

In Colombia, taxes on services are known as VAT and ranges from 8% -20% of the value of the product or service according to the service. For foreigners, Colombia has taxes exemption / return for the purchase of the following items:

  • Garments.
  • Footwear.
  • Perfumes.
  • Leather goods.
  • Compact discs.
  • Handicrafts.
  • Food for human consumption.
  • Toys.
  • Emeralds.
  • Colombian Handmade jewelry.
  • Appliances.
  • Purchase travel packages (for foreigners and Colombians living abroad).

To perform this process, move closer the Office of the DIAN, located at the airport, and remember to keep on hand sales invoices for goods or services purchased, a copy of your passport information and document in original.


  • Esté pendiente de sus alrededores y asegúrese de utilizar siempre establecimientos formales para los servicios que necesite. Si tiene dudas sobre algún establecimiento, puede consultar la GUÍA RÁPIDA (Link a Guía Rápida) de nuestro portal oficial de destino. Adicionalmente, los conserjes, mayordomos o recepcionistas de los hoteles, pueden orientarlo a encontrar un lugar adecuado.
  • Solo lleve la cantidad de dinero que necesitará para ese día. Los hoteles cuentan con cajillas de seguridad donde podrá guardar objetos de valor.
  • Si está en la playa, cuide sus pertenencias. Le recomendamos dejar las cosas de valor guardadas en la cajilla de seguridad de su hotel
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