Welcome to Getsemaní, Cartagena's cultural quarter and the coolest 'hood in Colombia. Meet raucous, proud locals, enigmatic street vendors, bohemian artists and feel the warmth of the smiles that greet you on every street corner.
Address: Meeting point: Centro, Calle Sargento Mayor, Calle 38, Cra 7, No. 6-107, Of 104, Cartagena, Colombia
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Getsemaní has traditionally been populated by a boisterous bunch of artisans, freed slaves and merchants selling their crafts and wares to their richer neighbours in the historic centre of Cartagena.
An intoxicating mix of locals and international visitors has since attracted a modern breed of talented types from all walks of life, from graffiti artists, sculptors, musicians and dancers to architects and backpackers alike. Together they've taken the barrio on a journey from no-go to boho in less than five years.
Gentrification is already afoot in Jet-Set-Mani, bankrolled by tourism. Experience Getsemaní before the cruise ship masses wade in and change the face of thebarrio forever.
This 'tour' does not attempt to hide the changes taking place in this fiercely traditional barrio, far from it, the experience is designed to help visitors connect with the local population, understand what makes the barrio so special and engage with the people doing their bit to ensure that it preserves its particular charm.
Filled with vivacious and idiosyncratic characters, street legends that play ludo like their lives depend on it and Gonzalo, the over-zealous 'owner' of Getsemaní's best street art.
To help you get the full experience of the barrio, Explore Getsemaní is also an opportunity to get involved in a creative art project designed to create employment and fashion a multi-purpose public space that will allow the locals to showcase their talents and sell their wares in a modern version of the public market that used to keep everyone in Getsemaní busy.
Cartagena's second historic walled city has gone from no-go to must-go in less than five years thanks to some of the city's hippest new bars and restaurants.
If Centro is Manhattan, Getsemani is more Brooklyn – an up-and-coming hipster hangout trying desperately to cling to its roots. It's regularly referred to as the coolest neighborhood in Colombia and has featured in some exalted lists as one of the world's most interesting places to visit.
A little rougher around the edges than the already gentrified districts of Centro and San Diego and the lofty ambitions of the beach districts, Getsemaní offers a glimpse into the more unruly historic centre of the past.
A fiercely traditional barrio offering a heady mix of bars, dancing, affordable diners, hostels and hotels for backpackers and bohemian colonists looking to mix it up with the carefree locals.
Historically populated by merchants, smugglers and freed slaves thriving from activity in the port and main marketplace, Getsemaní has always been more raucous than the hoity centre with all its regal airs and graces.
Much of the district's newest bars, follow in the city's loudest traditions.
The fantastic mix of roots and laid-back bohemia has attracted the attention of a string of leading travel publications including Conde Nast Traveler, Wallpaper* and the New York Times.
While much of the area's carefree population are direct descendants of the hell-raisers of yesteryear it is no longer the terrifying place that rich Cartageneros used to scare their children into staying at home.
Backpackers, never averse to roughing it for a cheap place to stay have braved the bogeyman with few problems for decades and a growing number of boutique hotels and hostels have followed their lead setting up shop in some of the bigger properties on Calle Guerrero and Calle del Carretero.
Uber-hotel chains like the Four Seasons have plans to kick the barrio into the stratosphere with stellar openings in 2021.
Some of the best restaurants in the city have now set up shop in the counter-cultural epicenter of Cartagena. Celele and La Cocina de Pepina are two standout options for foodies and Cafe Stepping Stone serves up the city's most popular brunch.
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