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Santa Marta

Santa Marta
Type of Location
About Location


Places to Visit
How to Reach

By Air

The Simon Bolivar airport (same name as the one in Caracas, Venezuela) has non-stop flights from Bogota and Medellin.It is located along the beach, 20 min south of town, but much closer to most of the beach resorts and only 10 min from El Rodadero (main beach).If you get in from abroad check if baggage is unloaded in Bogota even if airlines promise they'll send the baggage directly to Santa Marta.

By Bus

The bus station is all the way out of town on the main highway (15,000 pesos to the beach in taxi, some charge tourists 10,000.To avoid this, you should fix the price before you get into the taxi.

By Taxi

There are also exclusive private transfers by taxi which don't cost a lot more if you are more than one person and if you don't want to wait until the busses have picked up or dropped off anyone else.

By Road

For more comfortable road travel across northern Colombia, a few companies offer air conditioned van services between Cartagena and Santa Marta, with stops in Barranquilla en route.Cochetur seems to be the most reputable of these.Price is 50,000 pesos per person between the main two stops and they will pick you up and drop you off at your desired location in each city.Note: you will likely share the van with 6-8 people including the driver.Tipping did not appear to be expected but a thousand or two goes a long way here.

Key places to visit
Tayrona National Natural Park, Simon Bolivar's Place Of Death, Rodadero Sea Aquarium and Museum, San Fernando Fort, El Rodadero, The Lost City


Places to Visit

Tayrona National Natural Park

Is a protected area in the Colombian northern Caribbean region and within the jurisdiction of the Department of Magdalena and some 34 km from the city of Santa Marta.The park presents a biodiversity endemic to the area of the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta mountain range presenting a variety of climates (mountain climate) and geography that ranges from arid sea level to 900 meters above sea level.The park covers some 30 square kilometres of maritime area in the Caribbean sea and some 150 km2 of land.It was the second most visited national park in Colombia in 2009, with 211.833 visitors. The most visited park was the Rosario and San Bernardo Corals National Natural Park.

Simon Bolivar's Place Of Death

Beautiful and very interesting gardens, lots of iguanas, study the map before getting any further.The guide will tell you only about the buildings and the history of the "Libertador".Entrance 10,000 COP.Take a bus for 1,000 COP or taxi for 4,000 COP.

Rodadero Sea Aquarium and Museum

Is a public aquarium and maritime museum located in the Inca Inca Cove off the Rodadero beach in Santa Marta, Colombia. It was opened in 1965 by Captain Francisco Ospina Navia.The aquarium is part of the National Network of Museums of Colombia and part of ACOPAZOA, the Colombian branch of the World Association of Zoos and Aquariums.Accessible mainly by motorboat, the aquarium has 13 pools with direct connection to the Caribbean Sea, and 15 glass aquaria that contain over 805 animals that include sharks, sea turtles, dolphins, sea lions, crustaceans, fishes and seabirds, 98% of which are native to the area.

San Fernando Fort

Built by Spanish conquerors to protect the city from the pirates, it is a fine sample of colonial military architecture.

El Rodadero

Ten minutes by bus to the west of Santa Marta is El Rodadero, Colombia´s most popular resort town located at a beautiful bay with many hotels and a pulsating night life.The beach and the water offer a great variety of activities for every taste and wallet.

The Lost City

For the adventurous traveler, one of South America's most important and enigmatic archeological sites, La Ciudad Perdida -The Lost City- waits to be explored in the dense jungle on the mountain slopes of the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta.Constructed by the Tayrona people many centuries ago on more than 250 artificial terraces, this city was never found by the Spanish conquistadores and had been forgotten for many years until it was rediscovered in 1976. Even today, the site can only be reached by hiking for 3 days through exuberant vegetation.

Right Time to Visit

December - January
March - April