The One Hundred Years of Solitude writer's remains were flown from his home in Mexico where he had lived for years before passing away in 2014 at the age of 87.

A ceremony was held at Cartagena University, near the home of Garcia Marquez's family in the city. Although he had lived in Mexico since the 1980s his family decided he should be buried in Cartagena where many of his family members were also interred.

The writer's son, director Rodrigo Garcia Barcha unveiled a bronze bust of his father in the centre of the cloisters of the university as the centrepiece of the memorial, reports French news agency AFP.

"It's a day of joy mixed with sorrow," his sister Aida Rosa Garcia Marquez told AFP. "But there is more joy than sorrow because to see a brother get to where Gabito reached can only bring joy."

The Love in the Time of Cholera writer reportedly had a love-hate relationship with the city where he settled for just a year after arriving in 1948 as a penniless student from Bogota.

It appears as location in several of his novels, often as a decadent and racist society, full of conflict, and classism.

Garcia Marquez's parents and siblings moved to Cartagena two years after he left, so he continued to visit after settling down in Mexico City and later maintained a house where he often stayed during the winter.

His son Gonzalo Garcia Barcha told AFP in an interview from his home in France: "Cartagena is the city where the Garcia Marquez family is based. It is where my grandparents are buried," he shared. "It seemed natural to us that his ashes should be there too."

The celebrated writer was born in the town of Aracataca near Colombia's northern Caribbean coast. He started his career as journalist in the late 1940s in Cartagena.