Old town Cartagena is stunning. It’s made up of plazas, incredible architecture, street performers and boutiques. It draws in hundreds of thousands of tourists every year, creating a very competitive foodie scene.
Such a competitive food scene can make it almost impossible to choose where to eat. So, below are our top picks for breakfast, lunch and dinner, chosen for their flavours, their traditions and their ethos.
First up, Breakfast
Your first stop of the day is the delightful ‘Cafe Stepping Stone,’ located along busy Calle de San Andreas (Red pin on map).
Originally set up by two Australians, they run a scheme helping young individuals in impoverished local areas learn the skills necessary for employment. All the staff are so grateful and happy that it creates a wonderful cafe atmosphere.
Their toasted banana bread, smoothies and super fresh OJ are to die for! and very reasonably priced.
For lunch you will visit the equally busy street of Calle Del Porvenir, stopping at restaurant ‘Espiritu Santo’ (Blue pin on map).
This is as traditional as it gets and you will be dining with 99% locals. The menu is minimal but so is the price.
A standard meal consists of a generous serving of pork, coconut rice and plantains and will set you back all of £3 including a delicious lemonade.
Possibly the tiniest restaurant you will ever see, the family run ‘La Taperia’ is located along Playa de San Javier, adjacent to Cartagena’s city walls. (Green pin on map).
This humble tapas joint is run by a husband and wife duo, the specials are read out to you upon arrival as you are offered complementary olives.
The menu consists of a wide variety of tapas, the top picks include sweet goat brie, parma ham and shrimp. We recommend arriving early (around 6pm) to ensure you get a seat. Due to its limited size and increasing popularity it is common for a queue to form outside.
A meal for two including a small starter, several tapas each and drinks set us back a very fair £11.
Couple the dinner with an evening walk along the city walls. Gaze across at the brightly lit city scape and be entertained by the artists and street performers. ‘Cafe Del Mer’ (Yellow pin on map) is the only restaurant actually on the city walls and provides a great view for an after dinner drink.
That completes our diverse selection of top food picks! Let us know what you thought in the comments below!
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