Cartagena is located on the coast, an ideal location for walking, sight seeing & dining and has a naval base which has been strategically important for centuries as a sea port and ship yard.Originally an important Roman port, the historic city of Cartagena is now a busy cosmopolitan town. Take a boat tour of the bay or see the ampitheatre, Castillo de Concepcion on the hilltop & then enjoy lunch at one of the many restaurants in the cobbled narrow streets of the old town or at the harbour. Large cruise ships are now regular visitors to Cartagena.
The rich Carthaginian heritage extends from the shore to the city centre which is dominated by the Town Hall, a gem of modernist architecture dating from the early 20th century. The Old Cathedral is the oldest place of worship in Cartagena and stands on the remains of a Roman Amphitheatre. The Roman Theatre was built in the 1st century B.C. and could hold 6000 people. It has been very well restored since discovery in 1987. The entrance to the Roman Theatre Museum of Cartagena is located in the Pascual de Riquelme Palace, which was a Baroque looking palace built by the architect Tomas Rico. The famous architect Rafael Moneo built a tunnel underground to connect the palace with the Roman theatre, which is more than a block away. When entering the Roman Theatre from the top of the stands, the theatre is very impressive, one of the best preserved in Spain. Towering above it are the ruins of the walls of the Cathedral of Santa Maria la Vieja.
Beside the port of Cartagena is the monument to the Spanish Heroes of Cavite. During the Spanish American War of 1898, many Spanish soldiers died in the Battle of Cavite in the Philippines, fighting against American troops. The artist was the sculptor Julio Gonzalez Pola. Beside the plaza is the bronze statue of a soldier, sitting down on a bench. Nearby is the bronze statue of a marine standing up. Also nearby are three bronze statues of young women who are in a Holy Week procession. Cartagena has many beautiful statues and the natives like this type of art.
Cartagena City Walls - The Muralla de Carlos III is the old city wall of Cartagena, built in 1781. The city walls are impressive and are very well maintained. Cartagena has been an important military city because of its past, its port being one of the best in Spain, and today the Spanish military forces are still present in the city.
Modernist Buildings in Cartagena - The city has some Modernist buildings that are very beautiful. The City Hall of Cartagena is called the Palacio Consistorial and was built in 1907 by the architect Tomas Rico. There is a street called the Calle Mayor that is adjacent. The architect of The Case de Cervantes was Victor Beltri and the palace was completed in 1900. It features many miradors, which are large enclosed windows that jut out of the facade. The facade is made of white stone. The Casino is a private club and the building dates from the end of the 19th century. Also nearby is the Gran Hotel, built by Victor Beltri in 1916.
In September each year, the locals reconstruct the Cartagenian & Roman battles in a week of festivals & attractions for all to come & enjoy.
La Patacha is a fine restaurant to visit when in Cartagena & is a permanently docked boat now converted to a typically Spanish restaurant serving tapas to full meals. Enjoy sitting on the top deck overlooking the sea - see their website at www.lapatacha.com
Cala Cortina is a lovey cove just outside of the Cartagena port. There is a large public car park with steps down to the busy cove beach & also a restaurant with fine views over the Port