OK, shoppers, so what do we have to do to convince you to come to Colombia with your kids?
But if you call now, you lucky shoppers, you, we’ll also throw in – for ABSOLUTELY FREE – a guide to the kid-friendliness of Medellin. Not only is it the Most Innovative City in the World, but it’s packed with great things for your little excitable tyke to get into.
Still not convinced? Well, don’t despair: we here at the See Colombia Towers are feeling unbelievably generous today, so we want to show you our gratitude by giving you – at NO EXTRA COST – our Essential Guide to Cartagena! (oops! I mean, Cartageña!) What are you waiting for? COME TODAY!!! If that doesn’t make you come, why don’t you just stay at home and sulk into your X-box?
If having a vacation with your kids fighting for the controls of a video game isn’t really your idea of a super-fun time, we reckon it’s time to come to Cartageña. And there are plenty of reasons for bringing your kids, too.
Here are a few to get the beachball rolling. I’m sure a bunch of you will have more, equally awesome, suggestions.
Tales Tall but True.
When I was a kid, I wanted to be pirate. You know, the guy that flies planes. Well, even though I didn’t know my “r’s” from my “l’s,” I still reckon I would’ve been pretty chuffed to explore the magical realism of a real-life Pirate City. This is what Cartagena has to offer. Probably the coolest (and easiest) thing for kids is the Old Town itself: whether you’re just having a stroll on top of the centuries-old walls, picking up some sweet sweet lollies (you think they’re “sweets” or “candies”? learn some Strine, won’tcha, mate?) or fruit smoothies, or getting a horse and carriage ride around the funky old cobblestone streets, the kids will love it. Especially if you tell them that real-life pirates like Francis Drake once had awesome battles there. Even more awesome than the tale of Captain Jack Sparrow, because it actually happened!
Adding to this slightly gory theme that kids seem to get excited about sometimes is the Spanish Inquisition Palace. I bet you weren’t expecting that! Here kids can get all wide-eyed gawking at the torture chambers and tools, as you get to choose to regale them with the appropriate level of gruesome stories about these dark times. My favourite device is the Comfy Chair. What’s yours?
But perhaps the coolest pirate stories and spooky atmosphere can be found at San Felipe Castle. If you catch a taxi to this massive monument early in the morning, you can beat much of the heat, and have plenty of photo opportunities for your kids with the beauties of the city below. After that, hire a guide to lead you through the network of cool tunnels beneath this magnificent structure, and possibly tell you the story of the one-armed, one-legged, one-eyed Admiral who held off an entire fleet of English maruaders there. There are more stories about this castle too, right?
Right, so if your kids have had their fill of stories from Cartagena’s pirate past, we’ve come up with two other options.
Get Your Beach On.
First, it’s good to remember that this sassy city is the jumping-off point for all the treasures the Colombian Caribbean Coast has to offer. The closest of these treasures are the Rosario Islands – a perfect beach day-trip away from Pirate Central. Organise a boat at the place you’re staying, and you’ll eventually make it to San Martin, which has a pretty cool aquarium with all the marine fish and animals kids get a kick out of. After that, it’s usually off to Playa Blanca to give your kids a proper beach experience.
Another excellent day-trip option is significantly dirtier, but possibly even more fun. Totumo Mud Volcano is a spot that older kids are going to get all giddy about. There’s just something inherently hilarious about having your body weight suspended in a mud-bath in the middle of a priest-tamed volcano. Remember to bring some tip-money for the masseurs who will help you relax while your kids are mucking around in the volcano itself, and for the expert mudpie-cleaners who will remove this muck off you once you’ve made it to the nearby cleaning lake. And, be prepared for some giggling.
There you go, happy shoppers: some food for thought to give you some ideas of what a Kid’s Cartagena is all about. With this offer, plus those for Bogota and Medellin, we’ve done our darndest to get you and your little ‘uns over here to enjoy all the awesomeness Colombia has to offer. You have to come now, right?
Of course, the megadiversity of Colombia has a heap more to offer you and your kids, such as…