Photo Essay: The Mystery & History of the Doors & Windows of Cartagena, Colombia

This post is part 7 of 7 in the series Cartagena Travel Guide

The restored Colonial architecture in the center of Cartagena, Colombia, a UNESCO World Heritage site since 1984, is so gorgeous that the overall effect can be overwhelming. So much stone! So much color! So many balconies! When we traveled to Cartagena we particularly loved the mystery and history of the doors and windows of Cartagena, as you can see in this photo essay. Often shut to keep the Caribbean sun at bay, we couldn’t help but wonder what we’d see if we could just peek inside.

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Photo Essay: Highlights of the Gold Museum in Bogotá, Colombia

We found many things to love about Bogotá, Colombia but a real stunner was the city’s Museo de Oro (Gold Museum), which was one of the best museums we’ve ever visited (3,000 COP/about US$1.25, free for all on Sunday, tours available in English). The exhibits are fantastic with descriptions in Spanish and English, the collection is breathtaking and the guides are passionate and knowledgeable. There are thousands of gold items created by the different pre-Hispanic cultures in Colombia on display in the Gold Museum in Bogotá. Here are just a few highlights.

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Photo Essay: The Heart of Street Art – Cartagena, Colombia

This post is part 1 of 5 in the series Street Art in the Americas

The street art tradition is alive and well in Cartagena, Colombia where works by modern graffitti and street art legends from Colombia and around the world, including DJ Lu, Lik Me, Fin DAC, Yurika MDC, M.R. Love and DEXS, mingle with historic Colonial architecture in this UNESCO World Heritage Site city. The city’s Getsemani neighborhood is the heart of Cartagena’s street art scene, particularly on Calle de la Sierpe which was the site of 2010’s Pedro Romero Vive Aqui (Pedro Romero Lives Here) street art project. Some of the original work from that project still exists and new pieces are added all the time. The following shots are some of our favorite examples of street art in Cartagena taken during different visits to the city over the past year. Enjoy.

Street art in Cartagena, Colombia

fin DAC street art Getsemani Cartagena de indias Colombia DJ Lu - Juegasiempre street mural Getsemani Cartagena Colombia Pedro Romero street art Getsemani Cartagena Colombia Dexs street art Getsemani Cartagena Colombia street art Getsemani Cartagena Colombia fin DAC street art Getsemani Cartagena Colombia Pedro Romero street art Getsemani Cartagena Colombia M.R. Love street mural Getsemani Cartagena Colombia Pedro Romero street art Getsemani Cartagena Colombia Yurika MDC street art Getsemani Cartagena Colombia Lik Me hola street art Getsemani Cartagena Colombia street art Getsemani Cartagena Colombia street art Getsemani Cartagena Colombia street art Getsemani Cartagena Colombia Street mural Getsemani Cartagena Colombia street art Getsemani Cartagena Colombia street art Getsemani Cartagena Colombia Pedro Romero street art Getsemani Cartagena Colombia

 

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Photo Essay: The Knockers of Cartagena, Colombia

This post is part 5 of 7 in the series Cartagena Travel Guide

The restored Colonial center of Cartagena, Colombia was not made a UNESCO World Heritage Site solely on the merits of its knockers, but they didn’t hurt. Here are a few of our favorite knockers of Cartagena: over-sized, whimsical and artistic.

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Photo Essay: Sunsets and Landscapes of the Galapagos – Galapagos Islands, Ecuador

When people travel to the Galapagos Islands in Ecuador they assume they’re going to get great photos of wildlife–we took thousands of them (which we kindly edited down to this 21 shot selection of gorgeous Galapagos animals). But even when there are no critters in sight, the epic sunsets (and sunrises) and the only-in-the-Galapagos landscapes will keep your camera busy.

Our favorite sunsets and landscapes of the Galapagos Islands

Wolf Island, Galapagos Islands

Wolf Island, at the most northerly end of the Galapagos archipelago, is rarely visited except by dive boats.

Pinnacle Rock Bartolome Island, Galapagos Islands

Pinnacle Rock juts up from mostly barren Bartolome Island.

Bartolome & Santiago Island, Galapagos Islands

See a larger version of this panoramic shot of Bartolome Island

Dragon Hill, Santa Cruz Island, Galapagos Island

Dragon Hill on Santa Cruz Island is home to a large population of land iguanas.

South Plaza Island, Galapagos Islands

Spring time color in foliage just off the beach on South Plaza Island is in deep contrast with the starkly blue water.

Darwin's Lake, Tagus Cove, Isabella, Galapagos Island

Darwin’s Lake, in this dormant crater on Isabella Island above Tagus Cove, provides life-giving water and breath-taking views.

Galapagos sunset

We spent 24 nights in the Galapagos Islands and pretty much every single one of them ended like this.

Darwin Arch & Darwin Island, Galapagos Islands

At the far northern end of the Galapagos archipelago lies Darwin Island and Darwin Arch and some of the best scuba diving in the world.

Port Egas Santiago Island, Galapagos Islands

Port Egas on Santiago Island offers a sandy arch of beach and dramatic volcanic rock formations and is favored by sunning sea lions.

Ecuador Volcano Punta Vicente Roca, Galapagos Island

The Punta Vicente Roca Volcano on Isabela Island is one of our favorite destinations in the Galapagos, providing dramatic topside scenery and some of the best snorkeling we’ve ever done in the bay at its base.

Galapagos light

Good morning, Galapagos.

Galapagos beach

A beach is never just a beach in the Galapagos Islands. This one offers creamy sand, jagged lava and lapping waves.

Punta Vicente Roca, Galapagos Islands

A wave of lava, from the volcanic eruption which formed Isabela Island, sweeps down to the sea near Punta Vicente Roca.

Rabida-Island-Galapagos

Rábida Island’s red sand beach and scrub cover are begin rid of invasive goats so that natural vegetation and endemic species can return.

Los Gemalos, Santa Cruz Island, Galapagos Islands

There are lush parts of the Galapagos Islands as well, including the Los Gemalos twin craters in the highlands of Santa Cruz Island.

Galapagos islands color

Galapagos color, all natural and unfiltered.

Galapagos sunset

Good night, Galapagos.

Going to the Galapagos

We’ve traveled to the Galapagos Islands three times while working on a wide range of story assignments. We’ve now spent more time in the Galapagos than Charles Darwin did. That doesn’t mean we’ve come up with a revolutionary scientific theory, but it does mean that we know our way around the place. For more insights and inspiration about going to the Galapagos, check out the stories we’ve reported and written about traveling to the Galapagos Islands.

How to Travel to the Galapagos Islands published by Travel + Leisure

Galapagos Islands Dive Boat Luxury published by Luxe Beat

Going Greener in the Galapagos published by The Toronto Sun

This is the Most Luxurious New Way to Tour the Galapagos Islands published by Bravo Jet Set

Cruising the Galapagos with Grace Kelly published by Bio.com

Pikaia Lodge luxury hotel review published by Luxury Latin America

 

Check out our epic animals of the Galapagos photo essay

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Don’t Hate Us Because We’re Going BACK to the Galapagos

We’re almost embarrassed to tell you this, but we’re going BACK to the Galapagos Islands. In early 2014 we fulfilled a travel dream and explored Ecuador’s Galapagos Islands for a week on board the M/Y Grace (honeymooned on by Grace Kelly) to produce a feature about the historic boat and iconic islands for the Biography Channel’s website. We felt privileged to have those nine days in one of the world’s top dream destinations under our belts, then this!

Nazca Booby - Galapagos Islands, Ecuador

Our next trip to the Galapagos

In December we will be returning to the Galapagos for an additional two weeks in order to cover another week-long cruise, this time on board one of the yachts operated by Ecoventura. Then we’re getting on the M/V Galapagos Sky liveaboard dive boat (run by diving legend Peter Hughes) for a week of SCUBA diving in the Galapagos way out at Wolf Island and Darwin Island for a brand new assignment.

That’s one dream destination, three different boats, 24 days in total and two very, very lucky, grateful, and hard-working travel journalists. We’re looking forward to seeing new creatures under water (fingers crossed for hammerheads, whale sharks and our first ever manta ray sightings) and we’ll be sharing our increasingly comprehensive knowledge about travel to the Galapagos Islands in upcoming posts.

In the meantime, here are some of the friends we made during our first adventure in the Galapagos.

Blue-footed Booby - Galapagos Islands, Ecuador Seal Lions - Galapagos Islands, Ecuador Marine Iguanas - Galapagos Islands, Ecuador Giant Galapagos Tortoise Galapagos Penguin - Galapagos Islands, Ecuador

Going to the Galapagos

We’ve now spent more time in the Galapagos than Charles Darwin did. That doesn’t mean we’ve come up with a revolutionary scientific theory, but it does mean that we know our way around the place. For more insights and inspiration about going to the Galapagos, check out the stories we’ve reported and written about traveling to the Galapagos Islands.

How to Travel to the Galapagos Islands published by Travel + Leisure

Galapagos Islands Dive Boat Luxury published by Luxe Beat

Going Greener in the Galapagos published by The Toronto Sun

This is the Most Luxurious New Way to Tour the Galapagos Islands published by Bravo Jet Set

Cruising the Galapagos with Grace Kelly published by Bio.com

Pikaia Lodge luxury hotel review published by Luxury Latin America

 

Here’s more about travel in Ecuador

 

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