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Cartagena Street Scenes with a Side of Prose

As an attentive fan of architecture, one of Two Who Trek especially enjoys the visual study of Spanish colonial architecture. During our nearly month-long stay, we visited many sites with our local Spanish instructors or profesores. In and around El Centro Histórico de Cartagena de Indias are many splendid buildings or edificios, both grand and typical. Continue reading

Categories: archeological, art, background, blog, Cartagena, Colombia, photos, ruins, scenery, taxi, transportation, travel | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Getting around in Cartagena

Just like in most major metropolitan areas, Cartagena has many forms of public transportation.  Some are typical; others are rather ingenious.  Today we look at a few ways to getting around.

In the Historic Center of Cartagena, walking is by far the best way to move around.  We found that we could walk from one side of the center to the other in less than half an hour, if we had to get somewhere in a hurry.  But take your time as you walk — there’s so much to see, from historic architecture to balconies full of beautiful flowers.  And if you get really tired, you can flag down one of the many taxis on the street.

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Categories: background, blog, bus, Cartagena, Colombia, people, photos, taxi, transportation, travel | Tags: , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Cartagena Cart Conveyors

In our last post, we covered the many delectable delights one can find while wandering the streets of Cartagena’s Historic Center.  Throughout the area, many vendors use carts to sell fruits, vegetables and other food items.  Because of the variety of offerings, we decided to focus now solely on those carts. Continue reading

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Street Eats

 

Food vendors in Cartagena

It’s hard to go hungry when walking through the Centro Historico of Cartagena.  In addition to the many excellent restaurants in the city, vendors are selling food on the street almost everywhere you go.  Many of these folks use push carts to sell their wares.  Here’s a look at some of the different foods we saw. Continue reading

Categories: artisan, background, blog, Cartagena, coffee, Colombia, cooking, dining, food, food preparation, fruit, local, making, people, photos, preparation, restaurants, traditional, travel, vegetable | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

What’s for Dinner?

Food options in Cartagena are either familiar or awaiting discovery. Ceviches are typically made from fresh fish like sea bass or snapper and marinated in lime juice, onions and cilantro. Continue reading

Categories: background, blog, Cartagena, Colombia, cooking, dining, fish, food, food preparation, local, photos, preparation, restaurants, travel, vegetable | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Maria Mulata

Colombia is home to about 20% of the world’s birds. The bird immortalized in painting and sculpture around Cartagena is the Maria Mulata. A medium-sized bird of iridescent black or brown, Maria Mulata is neither blackbird or raven. Maria Mulata’s official name is the great- tailed grackle (Quiscalus mexicanus).

The story of Maria Mulata is a traditional tale shared with Two Who Trek by several local residents. Long ago, in the barrio of Getsemani, people and exotic animals co-existed. One of the animals was a vividly colored bird called Maria Mulata. When a raging fire overtook the neighborhood, Maria Mulatas carried the people to safety. The people were saved and forever grateful to their deliverers. Discolored by the fire and smoke, the bird’s colorful feathers remain blackened to this day but with proper sunlight, we can still see a hint of Maria Mulata’s former plumage. Continue reading

Categories: animals, art, artistic, background, birds, blog, Cartagena, Colombia, displays, folklore, nature, photos, travel | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Cartagena Clothing

Staying cool in the heat

Clothing should be practical and aesthetically pleasing. In Cartagena, the available options meet that criteria and more. Here, clothing flows and the textures and patterns make it fun to wear.

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Categories: art, artisan, background, bags, blog, Cartagena, clothing, Colombia, dresses, hat, local, making, manufacturing, people, photos, preparation, shirt, travel, weaving | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Coffee Break Time

Two Who Trek searches for 100% Colombian coffee

For Two Who Trek, fresh brewed coffee fills our morning senses with contentment and fortifies our ability to handle the day’s challenges.  Location is everything and a Juan Valdez Cafe is just down the street.  When our coffee supply gets low, help is just around the corner.

The image of Juan Valdez is synonymous with authentic Colombian coffee.  Since 1958, the fictional character of a Colombian coffee farmer,  representing the National Federation of  Coffee Growers in Colombia, is Juan Valdez.  He is sometimes accompanied by his burro Conchita, carrying sacks filled with  harvested Colombian coffee beans.

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Categories: artisan, background, Cartagena, classes, coffee, Colombia, food, food preparation, lessons | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Flying South for the Winter — to South America, that is.

For the past three years, Two Who Trek (TWT) have visited countries in Europe and Asia.  We are now back in South America and enjoying our first visit to Cartagena and Colombia!  An opportunity for a three week adventure to learn about another culture and to take more Spanish lessons was irresistible.  An added bonus is the sunny 86°F weather here while it is 28°F, cloudy and snowy at home!

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Categories: background, markets, people, photos, travel, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Pinnipeds, Porpoising, and People

Mammals, like reptiles, arrived in the Galápagos by sea.  On their own volition, earlier generations of sea lions, fur seals and dolphins swam here.  Their progeny now inhabit the area year-round.  We spent joyful hours watching marine mammals and learned many things about all the area inhabitants from our naturalist guide, Pedro.

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Categories: animals, background, blog, contamination, dolphin, ecuador, galapagos, galapagos national park, mammal, people, sea lion, turtle | Tags: , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

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