I have just returned from a trip to Cartagena Colombia with a stopover in Bogota, that is definitely one for the record books. Admittedly, like a lot of Americans, the majority of my knowledge about this country was based on what I have seen in the media about cartels and Pablo Escobar. Please don’t let this false narrative keep you from visiting this beautiful country. I can go on and on about the breathtaking food, art, and culture, but let’s get down to the goods – cannabis.
The majority of my trip was spent in Cartagena. Cartagena is on the Carribean coast and is a mix between a laid-back beach and an old historic vibe. The weather is tropical, the food is delicious, and the U.S. dollar stretched pretty far there. Anything that involves food and cheap prices is pretty much all I need in this life of sin. Well, besides Wifi of course.
Like I mentioned in Cannabis Chronicle 6, I normally use international vacations as tolerance breaks. And if you remember what happened to my silly-ass in Cannabis Chronicle 5, then you know that humidity combined with THC is probably the only 2-piece combo that I have to pass on. However, when we arrived in Cartagena my partner revealed to me that he had an edible that was actually originally intended to be consumed before we hopped on our flight. After resisting the urge to pile drive him for putting my livelihood at stake, I was kind of stoked because now I didn’t have to stress about how to score. We split a commander-in-cheef granola bar and hit the Cartagena streets.
The Walled City is the most poppin’ part of Cartagena. If you are looking for bars, restaurants, or just a good ole’ fashioned turn up you will more than likely end up in this part of town. We decided to take a break from Colombian food and head to a burger spot called Bonche. This was pretty perfect because the edibles hit us as soon as we sat down, so now we were feeling tingly and hungry. The menu has the typical burger joint options including a burger known as the Bonche Burger that just happens to be stuffed with 8 oz of cheese.
We sat by the door to avoid heat, but still be nosy and people watch. A man across the street broke out his guitar and started playing my shit. Guantanamera. At this point, I was stuffed with Angus beef and the edibles had me feeling like I could float back to DC if I wanted to. Time to go. We finished our night at Alquimico. The food and drinks are on point there. A little too on-point, because after one strong cocktail called the “Pain Killer”, my partner had to drag me back to our hotel. Or maybe I’m just washed. Let’s be honest.
We spent the weekend in Bogota, where I had another cool cannabis experience, and returned to Cartagena for the last two days of our trip. I’m not going to lie, its pretty easy to score cannabis in Cartagena. There are tons of vendors walking around selling corner store-like items such as candy, cigarettes, and even rolling papers.
Here are a few quick tips on how to cop in Cartagena.
1. Be aware of your surroundings. You are a foreigner in another country. If the offer feels sketch just move on. Don’t haggle too much, I promise you can find another seller. I never felt unsafe in Cartagena, but there are lots of locals approaching you trying to sell you things. Be quick and to the point. Of course be polite, but make the transaction and keep it movin’.
2. Pesos. Put 50 million pesos in your pocket and stick to that price. You honestly shouldn’t pay anything more than that for a gram. It’s still pretty steep (almost 20 US bucks) but it’s not the worst deal, and it’s not like you can just waltz into a dispensary otherwise.
3. Vendors. Remember the vendors I mentioned earlier? Ask if they sell papers. If you feel comfortable, ask if they have “marihuana” too. If he or she has it right there and you feel comfortable go for it. Do not wait for them to come back or go get someone else.
And of course, you can always just skip the tree and enjoy the breeze. After scoring some pretty crappy shake from our driver from the airport we decided that the quality wasn’t worth the risk. Maybe we just got weak product because we were tourists, but after the last bag of bush that we copped, we were over it. Give it a go if you are up for it, but certainly don’t spend too much time trying to find the dankest of the dank here. Cartagena has so much more to offer, so absorb the culture, turn up on a Chiva, or head to Playa Blanca and get your beach bum on.