Three must-visit cathedrals in Cartagena de Indias

Cartagena de Indias is a city with more than 10 churches in the northern area alone, some of which date back to colonial times, maintaining the legacy of the Catholic religion brought by the Spaniards in the 1600s.

Some of the most important religious scenarios of the “Corralito de Piedra” are located in the historic center. These are three majestic cathedrals that are worth seeing when visiting the city:

This imposing construction is located in the Plaza de la Proclamación, diagonally from Bolívar Park, and is the episcopal seat of the Archbishop of Cartagena de Indias, one of the oldest episcopal seats in the New World.

The cathedral is in the Herrerian style, characteristic of the reign of Philip II, which corresponds to the third and final stage of Spanish Renaissance architecture. It was designed by the master builder Simón González, who took as a model some basilicas in Andalusia and the Canary Islands, although the current tower was designed by the French architect Gaston Lelarge, the result of a remodeling carried out at the beginning of the 20th century.

The building has a basilica plan, is divided by three naves and has a series of chapels adjacent to the gospel nave. Its construction began in 1577, replacing the humble “straw and reed” cathedral.

This cathedral can be considered one of the oldest in America, contemporary with those of Mexico.

It was built between 1730 and 1735, thanks to the efforts of Governor Antonio de Salas, and was part of the religious complex of the Convent of San Francisco, consisting of the Church of San Francisco, the cloister and this temple.

Around 1954, its interior was restored. However, its bells, which brought together the inhabitants of Cartagena to celebrate Independence on November 11, 1811, were dismantled.

This church, like that of San Francisco and that of La Trinidad in Getsemaní, is of the simple type of construction with an austere external appearance. The idea at the time was to invest in a minimum of architecture and a maximum of decoration.

San Pedro Claver Church is best known for having the remains of Saint Peter in its main altar. It is located in front of Plaza de la Aduana and belongs to the ecclesiastical jurisdiction of the Archdiocese of Cartagena de Indias and is administered by the Society of Jesus.

The temple was built between 1580 and 1654 under the parameters of colonial constructions. It was originally known as the Church of San Juan de Dios, since 1622 it was called the Church of San Ignacio de Loyola and nowadays it is called San Pedro Claver.

Due to its historical, architectural and cultural importance, the church was declared a national monument by Decree 1911 of November 2, 1995.

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