Barranquilla is the major industrial city on the Caribbean coast of Colombia. It lies at the mouth of the Magdalena River. Barranquilla is known as Curramba the Beautiful (Spanish: Curramba la Bella), and those hailing from Barranquilla, like international recording artist Shakira and Boston Red Sox shortstop Edgar Rentería, are known as "Curramberos." The adjective for a woman from Barranquilla is Barranquillera, while a man is a Barranquillero.
The local money is Colombian Pesos (COP). Currently, the U.S. Dollar is worth about $2,400 Colombian Pesos.
Located not too far from the Equator, the city has a year-round tropical climate, averaging almost 90°F (32°C). From December through March the trade winds bring relief from heat. The rainy season usually begins late in May and continues through October, when there are showers nearly every day, although the skies are mostly clear during the month of July when an odd season known as the San Juan Summer prevails.
Barranquilla has several universities: Universidad del Atlantico, Universidad del Norte, Universidad Autonoma del Caribe, Universidad Metropolitana and Universidad Libre. Together these institutions of higher learning offer instruction in architecture, economy, engineering, medicine, law, and liberal arts. The Academy of Arts is also located here, along with one of the finest libraries in Colombia. There are also many bilingual schools like Karl C. Parrish School, Marymount School, Lyndon B. Johnson School and the British International College. Barranquilla has one of the highest literacy rates in Colombia: 98.7%.
Colombia's cuisine consists of mainly chicken, pork, beef, potato, rice, beans and soup. The local beer is Aguila.
The most popular cultural event is Barranquilla's annual Carnival (Carnaval de Barranquilla), which is celebrated 4 days before Ash Wednesday and is broadly recognized as one of the world's largest Carnivals. Residents claim it is second only to the Carnival of Rio de Janeiro in Brazil. In November of 2003, UNESCO proclaimed it as one of 28 different "masterpieces of the oral and intangible heritage of humanity". Giving additional weight to the city's cultural life is the famous hall of the Banco de la Republica where exhibitions of fine paintings and sculptures are held.