Cartagena region is dated back to 4000 B.C. around Cartagena Bay. The city itself was founded June 1, 1533 and named after Cartagena, Spain. Cartagena served a key role in the development of the region during the Spanish eras and secured a hold as a center of political and economic activity due to the presence of royalty and wealthy viceroys. In 1984, Cartagena's colonial walled city and fortress were designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site.