#ColombianSeries: Love is called Cartagena (or that time we honey-mooned with 40 friends)

There is no need to explain further: Love is called Cartagena. It is a city to love and to be loved. It’s the Colombian city you will fall in love with, the same city you wished you would have fallen in love.

I am Colombian but, as many other Colombians out there, I did not really live in Colombia. I grew abroad and live now outside the country issuing my passport. I have family and friends everywhere, and living abroad myself, there are little occasions to meet and be together. And one of those chances in life are weddings. We decided to celebrate our wedding with our closest friends and family somewhere in Colombia. And then… we decided to honey-moon with all of them !

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Beautiful Cartagena, view from our roof-top pool. Pure Love.

As we had guests flying from all around the world  – from the States, Paris, London, Madrid, Morocco, Chile, Brazil, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Mexico, Caracas, Australia … ! – to join us for our wedding, we thought it would be great to spend time with all of them, beyond the D-Day. One of the most frustrating feelings as wedding guests is that, in fact, you do not get to spend time with the happy couple. Not to say bride and groom (+ families) are over-booked dealing with wedding management stuff. Since most of our guests would be coming to Colombia to be with us and, by that same occasion, to enjoy a few days of vacation, why not spending that precious time with all of them?

Why running away from our friends and family to an island in the South-Pacific? Why trying to fit yet another vacation into our busy schedule? Why did we have to go on an over expensive romantic trip after our wedding? Are even honeymoons a thing anymore?!?!

So we planned for what we really wanted: spend time with family and friends we don’t get the chance to see as often as we would like to. Our city of choice was no other than the beautiful Cartagena.

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Cartagena in July : hot, sunny, sticky but marvelous.

We’ve been traveling together for years, we live as expats traveling as we want, where we want, when we want (sort of…). How do honeymoons make sense for travelers and expats anyways?!  Yes, we preferred to spend one week with our guests coming from the seven seas in Colombia rather than flying away to spend x days by ourselves on a beach somewhere. After all, we’ve got our whole lives to be together – right?  

That is how we ended up honey-mooning with 40 (!!!!) precious and lovely friends in Cartagena. Even if it proved to be a logistical challenge (try booking transportation, accommodation and recreation for an heterogenous group of 40…) we  loved doing so, and if I was to re-marry one day, I would do it again. 

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Moi in the Old City. Hello from Cartagena !

We had the chance to find beautiful accomodation options to share breakfast and pool-time together (READ : Where to beautifully sleep in Cartagena), we got to sail on a fancy boat to an amazing day on a private island in Islas del Rosario, we strolled around the city shopping for handcrafts and souvenirs, and we danced the night away booking our very own Chiva Rumbera singing ‘El Taxi’ from the bottom of our rhum-filled lungs (READ: Top things to do in Cartagena with or without friends).

We can never thank enough all of our friends for joining us in Colombia for a lovely time together, for being so easy-going with our sometimes chaotic organization, for letting us share all those moments with them. For the beautiful souvenir we’ll always had, that love is called Cartagena.

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The Dream Team. This is what a honey-moon with 40+ friends looks like. Can we get married every year to get do this all over again ?

 

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