Cartagena offers an exciting mixture of colonial city charm, big city opulence and luxury, splended beaches and numerous outdoor activities. Packing for such a destination can be a little daunting, especially with the hefty fees that some airlines charge to bring even a carry-on on the plane. Luckily, Cartagena’s hot, tropical weather means that you won’t need to pack a lot of heavy clothes (although don’t forget to bring something warm to wear on the plane!). We recommend bringing clothes that are versatile and can be worn at the beach and in the city.
For women, light, flowy dresses are perfect, easy to pack, and they don’t take up much space in your suitcase. They can go from beach to club with just a few accessories. Or you can pick up a new outfit at one of Cartagena’s trendy boutiques (you can find our recommendations here!) Make sure to pack sandals that you can comfortably walk in as Cartagena is definitely a city that you want to explore on foot. Although Colombian women tend to dress in tiny dresses and short shorts, we recommend wearing something a little bit more conservative unless you want to deal with a never-ending barrage or comments from the local men.
For men, packing is a bit trickier, especially if you want to look your best when out on the dance floor. While shorts and tank tops are great for the beach, they will certainly make you stand out at some of the trendier bars and restaurants. Try to bring at least one nice polo shirt and nice jeans or slacks.