We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Private Driver

Miami, Florida
Level Contributor
248 posts
23 reviews
Save Topic
Private Driver

I am planning a trip to Cartagena, looking for a reputable driver with a good vehicle in the area. Not just interested in tours, but mainly someone we can trust to take us anywhere we'd like to go. Can anyone recommend a driver they've used in the past?

Guianza Express Tours Guides Y Transportation
Sightseeing Tours, Taxis & Shuttles, Private Tours, Cultural Tours, Day Trips
Cartagena E Brasil
Bar, Club & Pub Tours, Scuba & Snorkeling, Boat Tours, Sightseeing Tours, Boat Hire
Free Biking Tour Cartagena
City Tours, Cultural Tours, Historical & Heritage Tours, Bike Tours, Sightseeing Tours
Bogota, Colombia
Destination Expert
for Colombia
Level Contributor
4,109 posts
7 reviews
Save Reply
1. Re: Private Driver

I would recommend contracting the transportation services of JJ, apart from his excellent tour guiding abilities - he runs a reliable and private driver service. We used him on several occasions on our recent Cartagena trips; his transportation service was personable, prompt, amongst all his professionalism … he knows the city like the back of his hand…

JJ contact info:

jacinto-200@hotmail.com

Cell: 317-796-2542

Edited: 25 July 2013, 19:28
London, Canada
Destination Expert
for Cartagena
Level Contributor
4,344 posts
139 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: Private Driver

I second Playa's recommendation - you won't find any better!

Miami, Florida
Level Contributor
248 posts
23 reviews
Save Reply
3. Re: Private Driver

Appreciate it so far! What are some trips you took with him?

Sydney, Australia
Level Contributor
1,500 posts
178 reviews
Save Reply
4. Re: Private Driver

Thanks for the tip Playa.

Will drop him a line myself actually too.

Bogota, Colombia
Destination Expert
for Colombia
Level Contributor
4,109 posts
7 reviews
Save Reply
5. Re: Private Driver

swaptrex, we did two airport/bus terminal transfers and spent an evening touring old town.

Shooter, no problemo mate,as always I'm happy to help out...

If any of you need help contacting him pm bjsabina or myself - one of us will give him a heads up...

Edited: 26 July 2013, 04:39
London, Canada
Destination Expert
for Cartagena
Level Contributor
4,344 posts
139 reviews
Save Reply
6. Re: Private Driver

I've done lots of stuff with JJ. He picks me up and returns me to the airport, I've done tours of the old city, walking tours, he's taken me through the fort. We've gone to Rosario Islands and Playa Blanca by boat and the last time I was there we drove to Playa Blanca. He's taken me on the Shiva bus tour. We've gone to La Boquilla, Manzanillo, Tierrabomba. He gives me recommendations on restaurants, he's helped me find apartments to rent. He's taken me on the city buses and given advice on which ones are safe and which to avoid. He's taken me shopping at the large mall on the other side of town. He has introduced me to his city in a fine way and, as I said earlier, you won't find any better guide, companion and friend while you are in Cartagena.

Edited: 26 July 2013, 13:23
Miami, Florida
Level Contributor
248 posts
23 reviews
Save Reply
7. Re: Private Driver

^ Wow, sounds like you've done a lot with him. When you say he took you "by boat", do you mean he took you to the marina or does he have a boat? Out of all those things you've done (and other things), what are some things you highly recommend? Also, i thought about taking a taxi to BAQ for Carnival, would this be worth the trip?

London, Canada
Destination Expert
for Cartagena
Level Contributor
4,344 posts
139 reviews
Save Reply
8. Re: Private Driver

He made the arrangements with one of the speedboats going to Rosario. He picked me up and took me to the marina, went to the islands with me. He took me to a tiny resort - I had the choice to staying at the resort for the afternoon, or going out snorkelling. We stayed on the beach at the resort and had a wonderful lobster lunch there, then returned to Cartagena.

JJ and his family have become good friends He is an honest, hard-working man who will make you feel like a friend. A few years ago I recommended him to someone here on Tripadvisor who had a birthday while in Cartagena. He posted on this forum that JJ actually showed up that morning with a birthday cake for him. That tells you what type of person he is. He is an amazing guide, he absolutely loves his city and he is like a walking encyclopedia about the history and current events of Cartagena.

Even though I am not a history buff, I would highly recommend taking a city tour when you first arrive because it really helps to orient you to the city and you will learn a lot of the history along the way. I'm a beach person, so I loved going to Playa Blanca on Baru Island - absolutely beautiful beach.

I also took a tour with JJ out to the mud volcano. It was a good tour as well. Most people absolutely love it. I enjoyed it but probably wouldn't rush back.

I can't comment on going to BAQ for Carnival; I haven't done that.

Bogota, Colombia
Destination Expert
for Colombia
Level Contributor
4,109 posts
7 reviews
Save Reply
9. Re: Private Driver

I agree with bjsabina's description of JJ; I might also add when he was busy doing tours with other clients he would check in with us periodically to make sure our trip was going smoothly, these extra touches went a long way to making us feel at home...

Yes JJ does longer distance transfers i.e. BAQ; S/MRTA - we didn't use him but he helped us make other transportation arrangements. Imho he could be very helpful with your proposed BAQ Carnival trip.

Wels, Austria
Level Contributor
23 posts
290 reviews
Save Reply
10. Re: Private Driver

if you allow me to recommend on some of the comments - for islas rosario/isla baru etc. you do not need any guide (unless you want company) bcs. there is a nice modern terminal, where all the boats are leaving to the islands on a daily basis. it is just in walking distance to historic walled city center.

(Muelle Turistico de la Bodeguita). don´t take the big boats bcs. they are very slow - i would recommend the speed boats - they take about 1 hr. departure times are announced, but mostly they wait until the boat is full, however there is always a lot of people going to the islands.

you may do a daily trip or stay overnight in one of the hotels there - you can easily take one of the not so expensive one bcs. service is generally good and friendly - 1 or 2 nights is nice especially when all tourists have left it is very peaceful while when you go just on a day trip, don´t expect to have a relaxing day - it will be more of having seen it and have lot´s of noise - no private moment at all.

may i also recommend one restaurant in CTG - La Mulata

Calle Quero 9 58, Cartagena - it is very cheap but really good traditional food and they have great fresh fruit juices. (8000 - 9000 COP or some 4 €/person.) - service is phantastic, but between 12:00 and 13:30 it is always very full with mostly locals - come later or reserve a table (66 46 222).

if you have time during your trip to CTG i would use two/three days to go to Parque Nacional Natural Tayrona - this is for nature lovers only! takes you about 4 hrs to go by car - take a walk and experience many animals (check the web site http://www.colombia.travel/en/international-tourist/vacations-holidays-where-to-go/recommended-weekend-destinations/tayrona-national-park) - i can honestly tell you, when i went there and walked through the forest to reach the beach - it is "wow" this is a dream - you come out of the forest and the most beautiful beaches are in front of you.

if you have time to visit other parts of colombia just let me know, i will be happy to assist with some tips.

have a good trip and stay in colombia