Northern Colombia is a hot beast. Upon our arrival in Cartagena it was around 35°C, which felt more like 40°C due to the added humidity.
Cartagena is a very nice colonial town. Unfortunately its main center has to be considered a tourist trap. We were constantly bothered by people selling souvenirs, photographs or coach rides.
The quarter where we stayed, Getsemaní, is much quieter and more authentic. Almost every night some event was organized on its main Plaza.
After we happily had our car released from the port without any issues (Caravan Shippers Hamburg, Enlace Caribe SAS Cartagena), we traveled along the Caribbean coast up north. Of course there are a few nice beaches along the way and we stayed in Manzanillo del Mar and close to Palomino.
Tayrona National Park is also very nice and you need to hike for a few hours to get to the best spots.
To escape the heat we did a detour to Minca at a slightly higher altitude and spent a few relaxing days at Finca Hostal Bolívar (great facilities and very well maintained). The sunsets from the Finca's view point are spectacular.
The northernmost tip is something completely different. La Guajira is essentially all desert but the stunning views are definitely worth the detour. The region is rather poor and inhabited by the native Wayuu. Supply with fresh water and gasoline is very limited.