Cartagena Insider is a website designed with visiting holidaymakers in mind, although we are sure it will also be a great source of information for locals and resident expats. The dedicated team at Cartagena Insider have endeavoured to include as many fun and interesting articles and categories in the website that will hopefully make your stay in the city a pleasurable one. We have thoroughly enjoyed researching all the articles and have included categories we believe to be important to visitors. Add Cartagena Insider to your phone for your personal guide to the city.
When it comes to hotel accommodation in Cartagena the choice is rather limited, especially when compared to the neighbouring resort area of La Manga. Most of the city hotels are also rather lacking in leisure facilities such as swimming pools and tennis courts. However, for many visitors it's more about getting out and exploring as much as possible rather than spending precious holiday time in your hotel. The city also has several rustic pensións, hostals and B&B's where guest facilities are basic but comfortable and good value. Nearby La Manga has a camping and caravan site with great leisure facilities, and El Portus Naturist Village allows you to bare all.
The team at Cartagena Insider certainly had a great time researching the city's activities. Most of the more adventurous activities take place in the surrounding countryside and coastline. Water activities feature highly in the area. The Mar Menor lagoon is popular for wind and board sports. The La Manga Strip is lined with fantastic beaches and the protected marine reserve around Cape Palos is fantastic for snorkelling and scuba diving. Further activities to be enjoyed include jet ski hire, flyboarding, boat charters, white water rafting, go-karting, hiking, horse riding and golf. For multiple activities the city has several sports centres and the thrilling Tentegorra Aventura.
Cala Cortina is about the only noteworthy beach located within Cartagena Bay. It consists of two coves and gets pretty lively during the summer, with beach facilities and lifeguards on duty. There are some excellent beaches surrounding Cartagena, especially along the Mar Menor and La Manga Strip. Calblanque Regional Park boasts many picturesque hiking trails and stretches down to the coast. Within the park visitors can take the hiking trail to view the massive Portman Guns. Cartagena's Tourist Boat is a great way to view the city's port area and coastal attractions. The city centre is home to many tourist attractions, landmarks and museums. The most visited of these is the Roman Theatre Museum, and also worth a visit is the Cartagena Naval Museum.
Researching the city's entertainment venues was also great fun for the team at Cartagena Insider although a few sore heads were felt in the mornings 🙂 We found it better to take in a few tapas bars during the evening as you snack whilst drinking, sometimes being offered free tapas with the drinks order. The city is also home to some great music bars, and in the surrounding coastal areas beach bars are excellent for families. Restaurants are predominantly Spanish with an emphasis on fresh fish and seafood. You will also find international favourites such as Italian, Chinese and, Britain's favourite Indian. Throughout the city and old quarter are numerous cafes, bakeries and takeaways, including favourites such as Domino's Pizza and McDonald's.
Family favourite entertainment such as 10 pin bowling and cinema can be found at several venues around the city. Two of the city's shopping complexes, Centro Commercial Espacio Mediterráneo and Centro Commercial Mandarache have multi screen movie houses. The larger of these, Centro Commercial Espacio Mediterráneo also boasts a multi-lane 10 pin bowling alley. They have numerous shops including well known high street brands, and restaurants on the upper levels. Supermarkets and specialist shops are found throughout the city. Visitors can also browse the Central Market and several street markets held on different days of the week.
The closest airport to Cartagena is Murcia-San Javier. Depending on where you're flying from, you may need to arrive at the much larger Alicante Airport. Both airports are modern and clean and offer numerous passenger services. They also have shops, cafes and restaurants. They are convenient for vehicle rental although there are several car hire companies in Cartagena City. For exploring the city and surrounding areas visitors may want to consider bicycle hire. Mobility scooter hire is also available. Some visitors arrive in Cartagena on visiting cruise ships as it's port is one of the only ones in Spain deep enough to accommodate vessels of this size.