Cartagena Unplugged: A Safe Haven for Solo Female Adventurers

Cartagena a Safe Haven for Solo Female Adventurers, a vibrant city located on the Caribbean coast of Colombia, has emerged as a safe haven for solo female adventurers. With its rich history, colorful culture, and friendly locals, Cartagena offers a unique and immersive experience for those seeking to explore the world on their own terms. In this article, we will delve into the enchanting world of Cartagena and discover why it has become a top destination for solo female travelers.


When it comes to solo travel, safety is a primary concern for women. Fortunately, Cartagena has earned a reputation as a secure and welcoming city for female adventurers. Its well-preserved walled city, designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is a testament to its historical significance and safe environment. As you wander through the cobblestone streets, you’ll find yourself immersed in a world of vibrant colors, colonial architecture, and warm smiles from the locals.

Why Cartagena? 

Cartagena a Safe Haven for Solo Female Adventurers stands out among the myriad of travel destinations due to its unique blend of safety, beauty, and cultural richness. For solo female travelers, this city offers peace of mind while still providing an adventurous experience. The locals are known for their friendliness and hospitality, making it easy to feel comfortable and welcome.

Whether you’re strolling along the ancient city walls or exploring the bustling markets, Cartagena never fails to captivate with its charm.

Top Attractions in Cartagena 

Exploring the Historical Walled City

The walled city of Cartagena, known as “Ciudad Amurallada,” is the heart and soul of the city. Its narrow streets are lined with colorful colonial buildings, boutique shops, and charming cafes. Visit the iconic Clock Tower, Plaza Santo Domingo, and Bolivar Square to soak up the historical ambiance. Don’t forget to take a leisurely walk along the ancient fortifications for breathtaking views of the Caribbean Sea.

Visiting the Vibrant Getsemani Neighborhood

Just outside the walled city lies Getsemani, a lively neighborhood bursting with street art, local eateries, and an eclectic mix of people. This bohemian district is a haven for artists and musicians, creating a vibrant atmosphere that is both inspiring and inviting. Take a graffiti tour, sample delicious street food, and dance the night away in one of the lively salsa clubs.

Enjoying the Beautiful Beaches of Cartagena

Cartagena a Safe Haven for Solo Female Adventurers is blessed with stunning beaches that cater to every traveler’s preference. From the serene shores of Playa Blanca to the bustling Bocagrande Beach, there’s a spot for everyone.

Soak up the sun, swim in crystal-clear waters, and indulge in fresh seafood delicacies served at beachside restaurants. Don’t miss the opportunity to experience the vibrant Cholon, a nearby island known for its lively parties on luxury boats.

Exploring Cartagena’s Culture

Cartagena’s cultural scene is a vibrant tapestry woven with music, dance, and gastronomy. As a solo female traveler, immerse yourself in the local culture and savor the unique flavors of Cartagena.

Experiencing the Local Cuisine and Street Food

Cartagena’s gastronomy is a feast for the senses. Sample traditional dishes like arepas, ceviche, and empanadas from street vendors or dine in one of the city’s renowned restaurants. The fusion of African, Spanish, and Indigenous influences creates a delightful culinary adventure.

Immersing in the Colorful Festivals and Traditions

Cartagena is known for its lively festivals, such as the vibrant Carnival de Barranquilla and the Hay Festival, a celebration of literature and art. Immerse yourself in the infectious energy of these events, dance to the rhythm of the music, and witness the colorful traditions that define the city’s identity.

Learning About the City’s Rich History and Architecture

Cartagena’s history dates back to the 16th century when it was a key port for Spanish colonization. Explore the Castillo San Felipe de Barajas, a mighty fortress that guarded the city against pirates, and visit the Inquisition Palace, which offers a glimpse into Colombia’s colonial past. Marvel at the intricate balconies and grand mansions that adorn the streets, each telling a story of Cartagena’s architectural heritage.

Safety Tips for Solo Female Travelers 

While Cartagena is generally safe, it’s always important to prioritize personal safety as a solo female traveler. Here are some tips to ensure a secure and enjoyable experience:

1.  Research and Plan Ahead

Before your trip, familiarize yourself with the neighborhoods, attractions, and transportation options in Cartagena. Plan your itinerary and identify safe areas to stay, ensuring you book accommodations in reputable establishments.

2.  Dress and Blend In

Dress modestly and respectfully, considering the local culture and customs. This not only helps you blend in but also reduces unwanted attention. Avoid wearing flashy jewelry or displaying expensive belongings

3.  Stay Alert and Trust Your Instincts

Be mindful of your surroundings and any hazards that may exist. Follow your gut and stay away from people or situations that make you feel uneasy. Always err on the side of caution, as they say. Trust your instincts and avoid situations or individuals that make you feel uncomfortable. It’s always better to err on the side of caution.

4.  Use Reliable Transportation

Opt for licensed taxis or transportation services recommended by your accommodation. Avoid hailing taxis on the street and instead have your hotel or restaurant call one for you. Public transportation in Cartagena, such as buses and minibosses, can also be a safe and affordable option.

5.  Stay Connected and Share Your Itinerary

Keep your loved ones informed about your travel plans. Give a family member or acquaintance you can trust a copy of your itinerary, and stay in touch with them frequently while you’re away. Additionally, consider purchasing a local SIM card or using a reliable mobile hotspot for internet access.

Transportation in Cartagena

Getting around Cartagena is relatively easy, thanks to its well-connected transportation network. Here are some options to consider:

Public Buses

Cartagena has an extensive public bus system that covers most areas of the city. These buses are an affordable and convenient way to travel, especially for longer distances. Make sure to have small change for the fare, as buses often don’t provide change.


Taxis are a popular mode of transportation in Cartagena. Look for licensed taxis with official markings and meters. It’s advisable to negotiate the fare or ask for an estimate before getting in to avoid any surprises. Uber and other ride-sharing services are also available in the city.


Cartagena’s flat terrain and compact size make it an ideal city for cycling. Many hotels and bike rental shops offer bicycles for rent, allowing you to explore the city at your own pace. To ensure your safety, use a helmet and always abide by the traffic laws.

Accommodation Options

Finding the right accommodation is essential for solo female travelers. Cartagena offers a wide range of options suitable for different budgets and preferences. Here are a few suggestions:


Hostels are an excellent choice for solo travelers, as they provide an opportunity to meet fellow adventurers. Look for hostels located in safe neighborhoods, such as Getsemani, that offer female-only dorms or private rooms.

Hotels and Guesthouses

Cartagena boasts numerous hotels and guesthouses catering to different budgets and tastes. Opt for well-reviewed establishments in safe areas, such as the walled city or Bocagrande. These accommodations often have additional security measures in place for guests’ peace of mind.


Renting a private apartment or room through Airbnb can offer a more personalized experience. Look for listings with positive reviews and superhosts who prioritize the safety and comfort of their guests. 

Meeting Other Travelers and Locals

One of the joys of solo travel is connecting with fellow travelers and immersing in the local community. In Cartagena, there are plenty of opportunities to meet new people and forge lifelong friendships.

Group Activities and Tours

Joining group activities or guided tours is a fantastic way to explore Cartagena while meeting like-minded travelers. Consider taking a walking tour of the walled city, joining a salsa dancing class, or embarking on an island-hopping excursion.

Language Exchange Programs 

Cartagena is a popular destination for language learners, with various language schools offering immersive programs. Engaging in language exchanges with locals or fellow students not only enhances your language skills but also allows you to make meaningful connections.

Social Events and Meetups

Keep an eye out for social events, workshops, or meetups happening in Cartagena during your visit. Websites and social media platforms dedicated to travel or expat communities often share information about such events. Attending these gatherings can open doors to new friendships and cultural experiences. 

Local Customs and Etiquette

Respecting local customs and etiquette is essential to ensure a positive and harmonious experience in Cartagena. Here are a few tips to keep in mind:

1.  Greet with Respect 

In Colombia, it’s customary to greet others with a handshake or a warm embrace, especially when meeting for the first time. Use “buenos días” (good morning), “buenas tardes” (goodafternoon), or “buenas noches” (good evening) to greet people at different times of the day.

2.  Respect Personal Space 

Colombians value personal space and maintaining an appropriate physical distance when interacting with others. Avoid standing too close or touching someone unless you have a close relationship or it’s customary in the context.

3.  Embrace the Siesta Culture

It’s common in Cartagena and many parts of Colombia to observe the siesta, a short break or nap taken during the afternoon. Respect local customs by keeping noise levels low during siesta time and avoiding disruptive activities.

4.  Practice Politeness and Gratitude 

Politeness and expressing gratitude are highly valued in Colombian culture. Use phrases such as “poor favor” (please) and “gracias” (thank you) when interacting with locals. A little politeness goes a long way in fostering positive connections.

Personal Experiences and Testimonials

Cartagena has been a transformative destination for countless solo female adventurers. Here are a few personal experiences and testimonials that highlight the city’s appeal:

–  Sarah, a solo traveler from the United States, found Cartagena to be a welcoming and safe city. She enjoyed exploring the vibrant neighborhoods, trying local cuisine, and making new friends during her stay.

–  Maria, a solo traveler from Spain, was captivated by the beauty and history of Cartagena’s walled city. She felt secure while wandering the streets and praised the warm hospitality of the locals.

–  Lisa, a solo traveler from Australia, joined a group tour to explore Cartagena’s cultural highlights. The tour allowed her to connect with other travelers and share unforgettable experiences, making her solo journey even more fulfilling.


Cartagena has emerged as a safe haven for solo female adventurers, offering a perfect balance of safety, adventure, and cultural richness. From its historical walled city to its vibrant neighborhoods and beautiful beaches, Cartagena captivates with its charm and warmth. By following safety tips, respecting local customs, and being open to new experiences, solo female travelers can embark on an unforgettable journey in this Colombian gem.

So, why wait? Pack your bags, embrace the spirit of adventure, and experience the magic of Cartagena firsthand. Unplug from the world and immerse yourself in the vibrant tapestry of this safe haven for solo female adventurers.


Is Cartagena safe for solo female travelers?

Cartagena is generally considered safe for solo female travelers. However, it’s important to exercise caution and follow basic safety guidelines, such as staying in well-lit areas, avoiding isolated places at night, and keeping an eye on your belongings. Researching safe neighborhoods, staying connected, and trusting your instincts can contribute to a secure and enjoyable experience.

What are the must-visit attractions in Cartagena? 

Some of the must-visit attractions in Cartagena include the historical walled city, the Getsemani neighborhood, and the beautiful beaches. Exploring the ancient fortifications, visiting iconic landmarks like the Clock Tower and Bolivar Square, and enjoying the vibrant The atmosphere of Getsemani is highly recommended.

What is the best time to visit Cartagena? 

The best time to visit Cartagena is during the dry season, which typically runs from December to April. During these months, the weather is sunny with minimal rainfall, making it ideal for exploring the city’s outdoor attractions. However, Cartagena’s tropical climate ensures warm temperatures year-round, so you can plan your visit according to your preferences.

Are there any specific safety tips for solo female travelers in Cartagena? 

Yes, there are specific safety tips for solo female travelers in Cartagena. These include researching and planning ahead, dressing modestly, staying alert, using reliable transportation, and staying connected with loved ones. It’s also advisable to inform others of your itinerary and whereabouts for added security.

What is the local cuisine like in Cartagena? 

Cartagena’s local cuisine is a delightful fusion of African, Spanish, and Indigenous flavors. From savory dishes like arepas, ceviche, and empanadas to refreshing fruit juices and delicious seafood, there’s something to satisfy every palate. Exploring street food, trying traditional restaurants, and indulging in culinary adventures are highly recommended.

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