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Hotels in Cartagena

Cartagena is a very popular beach vacation destination, so you can expect lodgings, in general, to be significantly more expensive than they are in other parts of Colombia. During peak seasons, expect hotels near the coast to run from around $100 to $400 USD per night, especially on weekends when the weather is nice. During the less busy times, however, these rates will often drop to half that or less.

Hotel Deals in Cartagena

Cartagena is situated directly on the coast, with most of the prime beaches and tourist areas located on a small peninsula that extends off the coast and is surrounded by an archipelago. There aren't many other hotel options within a reasonable drive from Cartagena, so visitors are largely stuck with finding the best possible deal near the beach even if they're willing to rent a car and drive a bit. The trick to getting a good deal on a Cartagena hotel is advance planning and knowing when traffic won't be as bad. A good trick is to use the "whole month" search tool to quickly see when traffic will be peaking around the time you plan to visit.

Tips for Visiting Cartagena

Cartagena's peak season is during the Christmas holiday extending into mid-January, when many people are on vacation and the weather is nicest in the region. The city is also very busy during Holy Week, the Catholic celebration that usually takes place on either the last week of March or the first week of April, and during the school vacation season from around mid-June into early August. May through the start of the summer holidays and the period from late August to November are the low season for tourism, as the weather is oppressively humid and rain is very frequent. The best season for bargains is from late January until the rain starts in May, when tourism is relatively low (outside of Holy Week) but the weather is very nice.

Dozens of hotels are located along Cartagena's beachfront, mostly properties in the three- or four-star tier. You'll find the major worldwide chains such as Hampton, Hilton and Holiday Inn here, but most of the properties are either local or part of more regional chains. The farther inland you go, the less options there are, but the prices also go down considerably. Two areas near the water that are popular with bargain hunters are Bruselas and Zapatero, which have more modest hotels that tend to stay well under $100 USD a night even during busy periods. The fishing village of La Boquila located just to the north of the main beach areas also tends to have much more favorable pricing, though be aware there is also much less in the way of restaurants and amenities in this area.