Colombia – Santa Marta

‘Touchdown’ sunset view from Tanganga Beach

Santa Marta is about an hour’s flight from Bogotá, heading north to Colombia’s Caribbean coastline.

We spent our first few nights near Tanganga Beach, a traditional fishing beach that comes alive at night with its local bars and restaurants. We stayed in a lovely hotel there, where we saw this pair of iguanas arise to take the sun in the morning,

Breakfast Buddies in Tanganga

We took a day trip to the Tayrona National Park, set in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta. It’s around a two hour trek from the trailhead to the main beaches and the safe swimming areas. From there you can choose to take a boat back rather than return via the trail and get a bus. There are also options to take a horse ride along the trail if that’s your thing 🙂

The park itself is around 150 square kilometres in size but there are relatively short trails for those wishing to only take a day trip, otherwise it’s possible to stay overnight but the accommodation options appear very basic at best…

La Piscina area for swimming, protected by a natural reef
The look out point at Cabo San Juan

We took a boat back to Tanganga Beach, arriving just after sunset after a journey of around two hours. Not the most comfortable experience but a great way to see the unspoilt coastline.

Sunset on the journey back from Tayrona

From Tanganga we headed a short distance south to Santa Marta for a few nights, a much bigger town with a commercial port providing a contrast to our previous days further north.

A beach at Santa Marta with its local seating and shade options…

Santa Marta has its attractions in terms of its nightlife, its colourful streets and, of course, its wonderful street art.

Not forgetting the numerous bands out on the streets touting for money, bringing the full Colombian experience to life.

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