Posts Tagged ‘Taxi’

Gettin round in Cartagena

Wednesday, March 9th, 2011

While most know our car is an 8 or 12 foot dinghy with a whopping set of oars, 2hp or 15hp engine, traveling on land in the city is another matter.There is a vast plethora of options. Mostly we walk everywhere we can; however, time and location can dictate another mode.

Besides owning your own vehicle in Cartagena; which requires a full year course in “Crash Car Racing”,  you have: Group Limos, Buses, Taxi’s, Motorcycles, Horse and Carriage, and Bicycle Carriages. All come with various prices and expectations.

Our tryst with a Limo occurred when we visited the Tutomo Volcano and spent a day with other cruisers doing a little of the sights. The cost of the limo was included in the package.

Yellow Taxi's

Yellow Taxi's

Mostly we take one of  the thousands of yellow Taxi’s throughout the city; that is when walking takes too long or we’re tired or we need to travel through a suspect (not really safe for tourist) area. Taxi’s cost from  5,000  – 10,000 pesos for the ride. This is quite different from the Windward and Leeward islands where the Taxi cost is per person.  We found the per person price to be IMHO unfair for us so we rarely if ever availed ourselves of taxi’s there. In Cartagena we were offered at one time a ride for 12,000 pesos but we turned it down and the driver settled for 8,000 pesos from Club Nautico to Boca Grande. Mostly the minimum  is 5,000 pesos if we stay around Manga (the basically residential neighborhood the marina is in)  and if we leave Manga  the price goes up to a supposedly maximum of 10,000 pesos. One driver spoke passable English (the one who wanted more money) but most have only a couple of English words. So we end up working on our Spanish Language skills to get where we’re going and for the most part that has worked fine. We’ve always gotten to where we’ve wanted to end up. The cars are small (which IMHO is a smart thing) and you can cram 4 adults into them. Don’t know if there is an upper limit; we’ve not tested it yet nor I’m guessing will we try.

Motorcycle Taxi’s are for us just too risky.  Neither of us have dared try one. The cyclists weave in and out of traffic like

Motorcycle Taxi's

Motorcycle Taxi's

they’re playing in  a video game. At lights they sneak between the cars, buses, trucks, and other taxis to be at the front of the queue. We understand the basic rate is 1.500 pesos up. Don’t know what the maximum is. Individuals use them all the time and we’ve only known of 2 accidents involving motorcycles in the 8 weeks we’ve been here.

What would a tourist destination be without the Horse and Carriage. We’ve not taken one yet but a ride is on W/s list. Mostly the drivers / owners are all Spanish speakers and they give a running commentary of the history of the Old City (where 99% of them hang out). Becca and IB took a trip with some vacationing friends and the price was roughly 60,000 pesos for somewhere less then an hour.

Something I’ve rarely seen; pedal carriages,  rounds out the various ways to get around. These guys hang out where people seem to congregate and will pedal one or two adults to any local destination. They’ll also  include (if you speak Spanish) an overview of the neighborhood and buildings.

Pedal Power

Pedal Power

While these methods may provide one with differing the views of a community, living on a boat, I still prefer to walk where ever I can, often dragging W/ along. And like many of the attributes that have filled my life, research seems to indicate that the things I do physically are quite beneficial, walking being one of the most important.

Go Slow
Sail Far
Stay Long