"La Catedral" Top 5 Page for this destination Cartagena Things to Do Tip by richiecdisc

Cartagena Things to Do: 265 reviews and 672 photos

  la Catedral is best photographed from afar
by richiecdisc
  • la Catedral is best photographed from afar - Cartagena
      la Catedral is best photographed from afar
    by richiecdisc
  • wrought iron chandeliers - Cartagena
      wrought iron chandeliers
    by richiecdisc
  • stunning wooden main altar - Cartagena
      stunning wooden main altar
    by richiecdisc
  • a breathtaking simple interior - Cartagena
      a breathtaking simple interior
    by richiecdisc
  • one of many pretty side altars - Cartagena
      one of many pretty side altars
    by richiecdisc

La Catedral is not only one of the most visually gorgeous buildings in a city full of them but also will serve as your orientation barometer for however long your stay is. As the tallest structure in the old town of Cartagena, it is nearly impossible to miss from just about anywhere. That's a good thing as streets ramble around and though grid-like compared to European cities, it is easy enough to set off in the wrong direction. It's also nice because the 17th century stunner is a pretty sight from any vantage point and you will enjoy all of them as you wander around town. With the church 11 years into construction, it was damaged in 1586 Sir Francis Drake's cannons which moved its completion up to 1612. It is very well-preserved and only the tower's top, commissioned in the early 1900s varies from its original structural form.

The interior is quite beautiful in its simplicity with a lovely wooden altar, high beamed ceiling and ornate wrought iron chandeliers with actual candles. We never saw it open for mass but by paying for the audio tour, you can basically hang out in there as long as you like. The tour itself is available in quite a few languages and was quite good. The best part is you can stop and start it as you like so if you want to breeze through it in 20 minutes or less by skipping parts, you can. But if you want to linger, you can sit in silence or take photos between sections of it and even better, there are optional parts if you are interested in hearing more about something in particular. It was a fairly hefty 10000 COP ($5) but it was worth it, especially on the day we went as we had the place pretty much to ourselves. I could use my tripod with no problem and got some great interior shots too.

Directions: On Plaza de Bolivar

Review Helpfulness: 4.5 out of 5 stars

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  • Written Nov 7, 2010
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