Did you know Barranquilla has experienced a total rebirth over the last ten years? It’s well on it’s way to becoming a true cosmopolitan center with something for every taste. If you haven’t visited recently, you’re in for a surprise!
This beautiful city has many wonderful places to visit, but without a doubt there are some places that you absolutely MUST go. They comprise the essence of this city. They’re destinations that have truly transformed this city.
The Window on the World
Our tour begins with La Ventana al Mundo (the Window on the World), adorning the traffic circle at the northern end of the Circunvalar. Inaugurated in 2018, La Ventana al Mundo quickly became one of the year’s most popular destinations throughout Colombia. It’s a place you can visit any time of the year. You’ll always find special events being celebrated such as wins of Junior, Barranquilla’s beloved soccer team. The best time by far to visit though, is in December. The monument gets decked out with amazing decorations! And right next to it is the largest Christmas tree in the country!
The Golden Gate
But the window on the world is not enough; you also have to check out the Malecon – Puerta de Oro (the Golden Gate Boardwalk). It’s a place where everyone always has a great time. Opened to the public in 2017, the Malecon is a fantastic spot for family outings. There’s lots of musical entertainment and food venues. You can find everything from ice-cream and empanadas to seafood and fine meats. Plus, the Malecon is situated along the great Magdalena River, providing an exceptional backdrop for your photos.
So long as you’re at the Malecon, you might as well check out the Puerto de Oro (Golden Gate) Convention Center right next door. It’s a great place to get to know Barranquilla! Almost every weekend it plays host to events of all types. You can enjoy everything from video-game exhibits to farm shows, car shows, and everything in between. There’s even a huge food and restaurant show in the fall season. For five days, the center gets jam-packed with ‘foodies’ enjoying the best eats in the region. They have cooking demonstrations by famous chefs and more food than you can ever imagine being in one place!
The Rich History of La Arenosa
But it doesn’t end there! Next up, you can go see some amazing architecture that really embodies our culture as Barranquilleros. We’re a people from afar, with ancestors tracking out to every part of the planet. Barranquilla is rich with the society and architecture of Western and Eastern Europe, Africa, and even North America. Take a walk through Barrio El Prado to capture some of the gorgeous, though fading mansions. Imagine the lifestyles of the people who once stood on their grand steps. Or take a walk down Olaya Herrera (Cra 46). You will experience a portrait of the last fifty years of living change in this city, and see the traditional style of houses of local residents. You might even get lucky and see some of the neighborhood men playing dominos in the street – an historical pastime. Anywhere you go in La Arenosa, you’re sure to find interesting things!
Wishes of Peace
A little further up the street you’ll come to Plaza de la Paz (Plaza of Peace) de Juan Pablo II. It’s a beautiful park situated right in the middle of the city, with fountains and flowers and a wide space for street vendors and events of all kinds. The park is so named because Pope Juan Pablo II visited it in 1986, performing one of the largest consecrations in Latin America.
Right next door, across the street, stands the massive Catedral Metropolitana María Reina (Queen Mary Metropolitan Cathedral). Regardless your religion, it’s a worthy visit to take in the history and architecture of this gorgeous structure.
Now do you know Barranquilla?
These are just a few of the spots that make up the body and soul of La Arenosa. What would you add?
What is your favorite place?