Where is the beach in Cartagena?! Try Isla del Encanto

Cartagena is a gorgeous, well preserved colonial city right on the Caribbean Sea.  While it has beautiful architecture, interesting history, and really delicious food, despite being on the sea, it lacks a proper Caribbean beach!  Surprising to many, the idyllic Caribbean beaches are an hour away by car or boat.  Plan accordingly if you are looking for a Caribbean beach vacation!

There are three main Caribbean beaches around Cartagena.  Playa Blanca, Islas del Rosario and Isla del Encanto.  Playa Blanca has the Caribbean white sand beaches and can be reached by car (or public bus).  Since it can be reached by car, Playa Blanca is often the easiest and cheapest option, as you do not need to go with a tour.  It is also the most crowded and local option.

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Colombian Wine: A Visit to the Gorgeous Marqués de Villa de Leyva Vineyards & Winery

When you think “wine vacation,” Colombia, not surprisingly, probably doesn’t come to mind.  South America has some world-class vineyards in Argentina and Chile, but Colombia has never made those those lists.  Nevertheless, Colombia boasts two (maybe three…still waiting for confirmation that the third one is working), wineries that, while not top-of-the-line producers, are decent and very interesting to visit, especially for the wine enthusiast.  Colombian wines are interesting to me because (1) Colombian wine is only found in Colombia; and (2) the grapes are grown at a very high altitude in the Andes mountains – unique in the commercial grape growing world.  In any case, once I heard about “Colombian wineries,” I knew that I had to hit a vineyard on my trip!

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Usaquen Market – A Shopper’s & Foodie’s Dream in Bogota!

One of my favorite days in Bogotá (and Colombia as a whole!) was the afternoon that I spent at the Usaquén street market a/k/a the Mercado de las Pulgas de Usaquén!  If you visit Bogotá and like to shop and eat, you absolutely must visit this market!

What Is the Usaquén Market?  The Usaquén Market is a street market and fair taking place every Sunday in the Usaquén neighborhood of Bogotá, Colombia.  Lot’s of vendors come out and sell quality handicrafts, as well as cheap trinkets. This is an excellent place to pick up Colombian souvenirs that are not touristy!

When Is The Usaquén Market?  The Usaquén Market takes place every Sunday from about 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. (give or take a little).  The market is at its best in the afternoon!

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