Tayrona National Park in Colombia, is palms down my favourite location on the earth. Prior to now I’ve stated that Pigeon Level Seashore is my favourite seashore, and Iceland is my favourite country.. however Tayrona is a mixture of the whole lot I really like in one place. If somebody informed me to shut my eyes and movie the last word paradise, I routinely consider that little stretch of white sand, and the view of all of it from a hammock within an open-air hut above the ocean.
Nevertheless, it’s not a trip for the weary.
Having fun with the spoils of Tayrona includes a number of multi-hour bus rides, an extended humid hike by way of the rainforest, fording a crocodile river, roughing it with little electrical energy & no cell service, being weak to dangerous climate, bugs, and extra bugs.
The closest major city and international airport to Tayrona, is the colourful and culturally rich town of Cartagena.
Cartagena is well worth the trip in itself, so be happy to spend every week right here before or after your time within the Park, to discover all that it has to supply. Together with Jessie On a Journey and a couple different associates, we wandered the streets of Previous Town, climbed the fortress walls, sipped sangria at small cafes, munched on road meals beside the ocean, shopped from local distributors, and spent our nights at El Viajero Hostel.
I might advocate leaving Cartagena in the morning and planning an evening in Santa Marta, as it is best to hike into Tayrona early within the morning.
From the hostel, head to one of many many transportation corporations that provide rides from Cartagena to Santa Marta. A personal shuttle bus won’t value rather more than taking public transportation and will save you a whole lot of time and discomfort (a experience on a public bus is bumpy, uncomfortable and missing in air con).
MarSol is a well-liked choice with workplaces situated proper subsequent to Previous Town, pleasant service, stops alongside the best way and affordable pricing. Tickets may be bought immediately from El Viajero Hostel for 42,000 pesos (about $12). The journey will take between three to four hours, makes stops alongside the best way for toilet breaks and snacks, and the shuttle will drop you off immediately at whichever accommodations you might have booked for the night time in Santa Marta.
It’s also possible to just e-book full transport from cease to stop to make things easier.
Santa Marta is extra of an industrial metropolis than a vacationer vacation spot, however it’s value exploring the markets and the primary seashores before grabbing dinner close to your lodge. Name it an early night time, as tomorrow will arrive shortly.
Masaya Hostel is comparable to a luxurious lodge with two swimming pools, a cinema, rooftop terrace and bar, hammocks and cord beds, free WiFi and nightly activities including dance courses, starting at solely $12 per night time.
The earlier you possibly can arrive on the park’s check-in, the higher—you want to take into consideration leaving at round 7:00-8:00 a.m. From your lodge, head to the Mercado (accessible by foot from most places, ask in your lodge foyer for instructions) and look for buses labelled “Tayrona”.
You will know you’re in the fitting place once you hear the bus drivers shouting “Tayrona! Tayrona! Tayrona!”.
The bus journey will value 6,000 pesos (about $3) and take approximately one hour. It’s going to drop you off on the gates of the park, where you will pay the 38,000 peso (about $19)–or barely less for Colombian nationals–which fits in the direction of conservation efforts and maintenance of the park and surrounding setting. entrance charge with an optionally available $1 shuttle experience to take you additional into the park from the Calabazo route. I might extremely advise this shuttle, as the primary a part of that hike is pretty long and boring.
Bear in mind which you could solely achieve entrance to the park throughout opening hours: 5am to 5pm by way of the preferred Zaino, Palangana and Bahia Concha routes, and from 5am to 3pm by way of the Calabazo route.
From right here, you’ll begin a hike which may take anyplace between 1.5 and three hours, relying on your pace and health. The hike will take you up and down rocky mountain trails, along cliff-sides with an ocean view, via slender passages within the rock, along distant seashores, beneath tangled mangrove and palm forests, and around vibrant turquoise lagoons. In humid circumstances, it is likely one of the most challenging yet rewarding hikes within the space.
Principally, the surroundings modifications drastically each ten minutes, and also you by no means know what you’re going to see next.
You might also choose to lease a horse for 32,000 pesos ($16), which can shorten your experience to the campground to 30 minutes. This can be a good concept for those who’re carrying a lot of water and other heavy gear. You even have the option of paying a bit much less for the rider to carry only your luggage and assembly him at the gate of the campground (which is what we did, and our luggage have been there waiting behind the examine in counter).
At one level you could have to scale giant boulders, and shimmy yourself by means of seemingly inconceivable cracks in the rock. Picket staircases are constructed into stone and lead you along cliffs excessive above the raging waves under. At different occasions, you will rise and descend rickety steps on muddy hills in the moist jungle, while sweat pours out of you, all before you traverse throughout a mile of shadeless abandoned seashore in the scorching Colombian sun.
Tayrona National Park
Tayrona National Park is situated about 20 miles from Santa Marta, Colombia, and is among the nations hottest and delightful National Parks. The Park is especially comprised of tropical jungle, peppered with a collection of immaculate and abandoned white sand seashores.The bathtub warm turquoise waters, distinctive biodiversity, and peaceable oceanside accommodations, all set inside a secluded pristine paradise, are what makes this Park one in one million.
Top-of-the-line spots for swimming is La Piscina, a small bay seashore about 15-20 minutes walk from El Cabo. It’s great for snorkelling, swimming and different seashore actions. There are many little rock outcrops, and locations to wade around and look at sea-life within the shallows.
Cabo San Juan Seashore
Cabo San Juan Seashore is, for my part, probably the most lovely beaches on the planet–and totally well worth the hike there.
Amenities are very primary right here, for example; electricity is simply on a couple of hours through the day. The loos are quite dingy, outside, however stored considerably tidy in the course of the days. Make sure to wear sandals, and convey along a flashlight at night time, just in case. The showers are additionally outside, unisex, and very open. Personally, I felt awkward having the ability to see the individual subsequent to me, separated only by a shoulder peak wall, so I stored a swim go well with on. Line ups are often quite lengthy within the mornings.
You even have the option of renting hammocks in a hut near the forest for 13,000 pesos (about $4.50). Simply keep in mind this location is more prone to mosquitoes. Additionally, there are tents for lease, for 30,000 pesos (about $10), with two sleeping luggage.
The Hammock Hut
As quickly as you arrive, examine into the campground, where you possibly can lease a hammock within the raised hut for 25,000 pesos ($12.50) or one down on the bottom for 20,000 pesos ($10).
Within the campground’s raised hut, you will feel as though you’re in a movie or a dream. Sitting atop a tall stone outcrop, reachable solely by a strip of crisp white sand, the open-air hut is surrounded on three sides by huge ocean horizon. Backed by the jungles of Tayrona, the hut is full of a few dozen swinging hammocks, and topped by a personal suite with a bed.
It is, arms down, probably the most unimaginable scene that you will lay eyes upon when travelling to Colombia. I don’t mean to sound like some clichéd journey writer, however I might literally simply sit there and stare at the view for a lot of the day, and will think about it a minimum of breathtaking.
I’d say, that t’s greatest to give yourself no less than two full days within the park to really take pleasure in it–so lease your hammock for two nights.
There is a restaurant right on the seashore that gives several varieties of meals including pasta, meat, rice and greens. The meals vary from 10,000 to 22,000 pesos ($5-11). Beer can also be obtainable at four,000 pesos ($2) and smoothies at 5,000 ($2.50).
There are two seashores on either aspect of the hammock hut and a number of other other seashores nearby for exploring. The campground has many facilities similar to flushing bogs, scorching showers, public electrical retailers, lockers to lease and a snack bar. There are additionally many native distributors that frequent the park with handmade jewellery, food and other gadgets.
While there’s lots to do in the park when it comes to lively mountaineering, snorkelling and pickup sports activities, that is the sort of place that you want to sit and loosen up as a lot as attainable.
Tayrona’s Cabo San Juan seashore is an absolute paradise.
What To Convey
- Water. Plenty of it. As a lot as you’ll be able to carry. You should purchase it within the park, however it’s very costly.
- Meals & snacks (strategies: crackers, peanut butter, tuna, granola bars, bread, bananas and so on.)
- Your passport to verify into the Park
- longer layers for sleeping
- small lock for lockers
- rest room paper
- massive spray/ mosquito repellent
- sun shades
- good climbing footwear
- digital camera (waterproof)
- a e-book
- playing cards or dice
What Not To Deliver
- Alcohol or medicine (they may examine your luggage, and they’ll confiscate your booze)
- plastics luggage
- additional clothes
- any valuables you don’t want to depart in a locker
Leaving the Park
There’s no want for an additional three-hour hike via the jungle, should you’re not feeling up to it: you possibly can hop on a ship proper at Cabo San Juan seashore and experience it over to the village of Taganga for 45,000 pesos ($22).
Taganga is simply around the mountain from Santa Marta, yet is completely totally different in each approach. There are not any high-rise buildings, few paved streets, and not one of the hustle-and-bustle of metropolis life.
This small seashore village is comprised of smiling locals and a thriving expat group of surfers and backpackers. Taganga might be described as nothing less than charming, picturesque and peaceful. You’ll have the option of both catching a bus immediately again to Cartagena that day or spending an evening in the village, the place you’ll be able to take pleasure in some recent seafood and a fantastic sunset.
One other various to climbing out of the Park is driving horseback for 32,000 pesos ($16). The horse journey is definitely fairly an adrenaline rush, because the horse will run and trot at certain occasions by means of slender rock hallways and along steep forest drops.
I opted for a partial horse journey and brief hike, after which did the journey again to Cartagena another time.
Have you been to Tayrona?
What was your favourite half?