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In 1991 Billy and Akaisha Kaderli retired at the age of 38. Now, into their 4th decade of this financially independent lifestyle, they invite you to take advantage of their wisdom and experience.

Cafe del Mar Rooftop Bar

Cartagena, Colombia

Billy and Akaisha Kaderli

One of the things we really enjoy when we go to a city, is to check out their rooftop bars and restaurants. It's a great way to spend happy hour and share some appetizers or a meal.

Cartagena was no different.

The first place recommended to us was Cafe del Mar.

Dubbed as the best place in town to watch the sunset, we went there on our 2nd night in town.


Map of walled city of Cartagena, Colombia

Map of the Walled City of Cartagena, Colombia, with Cafe del Mar marked.

First we had to find the place.

Yeah, yeah, it looks easy enough on this map, but since the signage wasn't super clear, when we got to the wall, we walked right under Cafe del Mar and outside to the highway.

Wait. Wait. No, it's supposed to be right here.

Then I looked up and I see all these beautiful people sitting on top and at the edge of the wall with drinks in front of them. I nudge Billy and point... UP!

We felt embarrassed, but not deterred and quickly walked back under the wall to locate some sort of entrance.

Panorama of Cafe del Mar at sunset, Cartagena, Colombia

Panoramic shot of Cafe del Mar at sunset


It was packed!!

We knew the place was popular, but we were unprepared for the amount of people and the size of this bar. It's not like we were late, sunset wasn't for another 20 minutes or so, but we scrambled to find a seat.

Music was pumpin' and waitstaff were running around filling orders and smelling big tip money.





This was a place for the young, the rich, and the well-dressed. Latins are hot and it's the tropics. So women are in their most fancy skimpy outfits and some men had their shirts open.

As the waiter passed, I asked him for a menu, and received one of fancy mixed drinks. We found out that Cartagena is known for elegant "umbrella drinks", but we were interested in appetizers and copitas of rum; straight up or over ice.

Beautiful women at Cafe del Mar, Cartagena, Colombia

Beautiful women at Cafe del Mar

Another waiter zipped by, and I asked if we could get a table... he whizzed his head around, and with a puzzled expression asked if we would like to share a table.

Sure. Whatever.

Then he disappeared.

Meanwhile Billy is somewhere taking a video (where IS that boy!) and then he magically appears next to me. I give him the cliff note version of available tables, the menu I saw and said "what do you think?"

Billy saw a table which looked reserved (are you kidding me?) and then looked closer at the placard. It was free!

We sat down before we were mowed down by traffic.


Flag of Cartagena blowing in the wind, Colombia

There's a strong breeze up here!

This is the flag for the city of Cartagena.

The flag was so large and the wind was so strong, we could hear it flappin'.

But I'm telling you, at 10 degrees latitude, it's HOT here, so the breeze is welcomed. It's like you are on a sailboat, almost.

And besides... we're on the famous WALL of Cartagena, built centuries ago, to protect this town.

Historical and amazing.

On the wall at Cafe Del Mar, Cartagena, Colombia looking towards Boca Grande

Looking towards Boca Grande

We are on the fortified wall of Cartagena, looking toward some of the richest real estate in the country, Boca Grande.

We love international cities.

You get to meet Europeans, South Americans, Koreans... and New Yorkers!!

Seriously. It seemed New Yorkers were everywhere.

There must be a milk-run flight NYC to Miami or straight to Cartagena.

shots of rum, bottles of water, Cafe del Mar, Cartagena, Colombia

Rum, ice and bottled water

Because we are on the Caribbean Sea, our drink of choice is rum.

We enjoy stories of pirates, treasure, rum, sugar plantations, cigar making and more - that the history of this area offers. And here we are... sitting on this huge wall built by the Spanish so many years ago, watching the sun go down.

Cafe del Mar, looking towards Boca Grande, Cartagena, Colombia

Centuries old wall and cannon, looking towards modern day Boca Grande

Centuries ago, the sea lapped against these walls. Pirate ships were out in the ocean, and these cannons fired on them to protect the inhabitants of the city and the gold and treasure within.

Now, sediment has built up, and a highway has been built where marauders once snuck around to invade the town.

Churches and Colonial buildings of the city are on the left and some of the most first-world skyscrapers and facilities in Colombia are on the right.

What a fascinating juxtaposition!

Beautiful Latinas in Cafe del Mar, Cartagena, Colombia

Beautiful Latinas at Cafe del Mar

These stylish young women are preparing to sit down to enjoy their drinks: a martini and a long island ice tea -- or something close to it.

The sun has reached the horizon, and the night is just starting.

Cafe del Mar neon sign, Cartagena, Colombia

Cafe del Mar in neon

A brilliant sun setting over the Caribbean Sea all done in neon.





People have come and gone, but the place is still full.

Our bill

Sorry for the blur here - this photo was taken with our phone and the lighting was minimal.

Copitas (little cups or sometimes shot glasses) are called tragos here. We tried a few times to order food, but never could get a menu...

So our bill for 2 tragos each, plus tip came to about $22USD.

After we paid, we walked around Cartagena, enjoying the night life and found a little family-run restaurant where we shared an evening meal.

If you are ever in Old Town Cartagena, Cafe del Mar is a must-see on your list.

Café del Mar Ltda.

Located in: Walls of Cartagena, Bulwark of Santo Domingo, Cartagena, Province of Cartagena, Bolivar

Open nightly at 4:30PM until 2AM


Cell: +57 (320) 5424501

For more information on Colombia, with photos, stories and videos, click here

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About the Authors

Billy and Akaisha Kaderli are recognized retirement experts and internationally published authors on topics of finance, medical tourism and world travel. With the wealth of information they share on their award winning website, they have been helping people achieve their own retirement dreams since 1991. They wrote the popular books, The Adventurer’s Guide to Early Retirement and Your Retirement Dream IS Possible available on their website bookstore or on

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