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Best Beaches Around Santa Marta

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Santa Marta is one of the best cities in Colombia from which to explore some of the country's top beaches. It provides a central base that allows visitors easy access to the famous Tayrona National Park, as well as several awesome beaches both in an near the city. This list features a few different options for enjoying the best of the Colombian Caribbean coast.

Good for
  • Nature Lover
  • Peace and Quiet Seeker
  • Beach Goer
  • Thrifty Traveller
  • Trendsetter
  • Like a Local

8 Places

3 City Tips

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Map

8 Places

Parque Nacional Natural Tayrona

National Parks

Bahia concha Santa Marta Colombia

Other Fun & Games

Cristal Beach

Beaches

Playa Blanca

Beaches

Playa Grande

Beaches

Parque Nacional Natural Tayrona

National Parks

Playa Salguero

Beaches, Spas

Playaca

Beaches

solodiana's City Tips

  • The geographic location of Santa Marta makes it a good base to explore the Caribbean Colombian region. From here, you can easily reach the other principal cities (by bus or plane) and famous beaches of the area (by bus or taxi).
  • It´s important to know at least some basic Spanish words, because outside of the tourist accommodations, the majority of people on the street don´t speak any English.
  • Include in your trip at least one local experience, such as a picnic at Bahia Concha.
  • Save
    Parque Nacional Natural Tayrona
    National Parks
    See more photos
    solodiana Says:

    Tayrona National Park is one of most iconic places in Colombia, and some of the country's best beaches can be found here. The beauty of the seascape mixed with the powerful imagery of the mountains is truly stunning, and you can soak it all in on one of the following well maintained beaches: Cañaveral, Arrecifes, La Arenilla, La Piscina, Cabo San Juan del Guia, Playa del Medio, or Boca del Saco. I recommend staying here for at least three days to explore all the interesting features of this park — there's far more to discover than sand and sea!

    Good for
    • Peace and Quiet Seeker
    • Must See
    • Beach Goer
    • Like a Local
    • Solo
    • Friends
    • Couples
    • Family
    • Nature Lover
    Tips
    • It is recommended to drink only bottled water during your stay here.
    • There are numerous accommodation options here, from camping areas to traditional open-air hammocks to cottages.
    • You will have to walk quite a distance from the road to the park when you arrive, so it's better to travel in the morning, before the heat of the day.
    • The famous "Ciudad Perdida" (Lost City) is located nearby. Many tour companies offer 4- or 5-day treks along the 44km route to get there.
    Plan to stay:/
    More than 3 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #1 of 80 things to do in Santa Marta
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Not worth it, overpriced, DO NOT PAY FOR SNORKELING! 20/11/2017
    • Tayrona parque in 1 day 20/11/2017
    • Parque Nacional Natural Tayrona
  • Save
    Bahia concha Santa Marta Colombia
    Other Fun & Games
    See more photos
    solodiana Says:

    This beach is perfect for a peaceful day out. Though it's a private area (meaning you have to pay a small fee to enter), the landscape of typical, tropical forest is simply amazing. And you can spend hours swimming through schools of fish and snorkeling to your heart's content. You can even camp out for the night.

    Good for
    • Peace and Quiet Seeker
    • Beach Goer
    • Luxury Traveller
    • Hidden Gems
    • Solo
    • Friends
    • Couples
    • Nature Lover
    Tips
    • The farther away from the entrance you walk, the more peaceful are the places you'll find.
    Plan to stay:/
    More than 3 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #1 of 3 Fun & Games in Santa Marta
    • Highly recommend- Great beach and fantastic snorkelling 10 min away! 26/10/2017
    • Excellent for a snorkeling tour 21/10/2017
    • Bahia concha Santa Marta Colombia
    Address:
    Via Ingreso Parque Tairona
    Santa Marta 470007
    Colombia
    Phone:
    +57 300 4895175
    Other:
  • Save
    Cristal Beach
    Beaches
    See more photos
    solodiana Says:

    Cristal is one of the most beautiful beaches in Parque Tayrona. As the name suggests, the water is amazingly clear here, and the white sand provides the perfect place to throw your towel down for a while. Relax, snorkel, or eat a delicious meal of fresh fish at one of the beach restaurants — all of this awaits just a 40-minute walk from the main road.

    Good for
    • Peace and Quiet Seeker
    • Must See
    • Beach Goer
    • Like a Local
    • Solo
    • Friends
    • Couples
    • Family
    • Nature Lover
    Tips
    • Bring a waterproof bag for your electronics and other valuables; during the boat trip here, everything is going to get wet!
    • Many tour companies bring visitors here by boat from Taganga or Bahía de Neguanje.
    Plan to stay:/
    More than 3 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #4 of 80 things to do in Santa Marta
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Pretty beach within 1 hour boat ride from Taganga 19/11/2017
    • Cristal Beach 16/11/2017
    • Cristal Beach
    Address:
    Via a Cienaga
    Tayrona National Natural Park
    Santa Marta
    Colombia
    Other:
  • Save
    Playa Blanca
    Beaches
    See more photos
    solodiana Says:

    This beach is located 15 minutes from Rodadero. Take a boat, do some snorkeling, and enjoy one of the clearest stretches of water and white sand in Santa Marta. Also situated close to the aquarium, Playa Blanca makes for the perfect day trip. In addition to awesome landscapes, you will find many good options for lunch.

    Good for
    • Must See
    • Beach Goer
    • Like a Local
    • Friends
    • Couples
    • Family
    • Nature Lover
    Tips
    • Bring a hat and other protection to shield you from the strong rays of the sun.
    • Be careful when choosing your transportation from Rodadero — it's better to pay a little bit more to travel safely.
    • It´s better to go during the week, when the boats and the beach are less crowded.
    Plan to stay:/
    More than 3 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #8 of 80 things to do in Santa Marta
    • Not like the pics 18/11/2017
    • Day trip tourist beach 11/11/2017
    • Playa Blanca
    Phone:
    +57 319 4868455
    Other:
  • Save
    Playa Grande
    Beaches
    See more photos
    solodiana Says:

    Playa Grande is the principal beach in the Taganga area. It's completely natural, quiet, and isolated — and during the week it is peaceful and pretty much deserted. Follow the nature trail (about a 10-minute walk) from Taganga's center to this secluded stretch of sand, and enjoy the awesome view.

    Good for
    • Peace and Quiet Seeker
    • Beach Goer
    • Hidden Gems
    • Like a Local
    • Solo
    • Friends
    • Couples
    • Senior
    • Nature Lover
    Tips
    • At the end of the day, go to the Taganga viewpoint and soak in the panorama at sunset.
    • There are many options for buying tasty local food here.
    • This is a great place to snorkel.
    Plan to stay:/
    More than 3 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #6 of 19 things to do in Taganga
    • Small, crowded and dirty 12/11/2017
    • Filthy beach 18/10/2017
    • Playa Grande
    Phone:
    +57 315 5471629
  • Save
    Parque Nacional Natural Tayrona
    National Parks
    See more photos
    solodiana Says:

    This beach is for those looking to disconnect from the world for a while. An absolutely peaceful place, Playa del Parque Tayrona Granate offers just the sea, the sand, the sound of the waves, and you. A 25-minute boat ride from Taganga, this spot is also the best place for diving in Tayrona.

    Good for
    • Peace and Quiet Seeker
    • Must See
    • Beach Goer
    • Like a Local
    • Solo
    • Friends
    • Couples
    • Nature Lover
    Tips
    • There are no bars or restaurants here, so let the boat captain know if you want to include lunch with your travel here. Otherwise, bring your own food.
    Plan to stay:/
    More than 3 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #1 of 80 things to do in Santa Marta
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Not worth it, overpriced, DO NOT PAY FOR SNORKELING! 20/11/2017
    • Tayrona parque in 1 day 20/11/2017
    • Parque Nacional Natural Tayrona
  • Save
    Playa Salguero
    Beaches, Spas
    See more photos
    solodiana Says:

    Although it is located next to the very popular El Rodadero beach, Playa Salguero offers a contrast to Rodadero's crowds. Here, you'll find a peaceful sandy stretch to enjoy — far away from the hustle of the hawkers. This is also one of the best places to admire the sunset in the city.

    Good for
    • Peace and Quiet Seeker
    • Must See
    • Beach Goer
    • Hidden Gems
    • Like a Local
    • Solo
    • Friends
    • Couples
    • Senior
    Tips
    • Go during the afternoon, and have your camera ready for sunset!
    • You can get here on the same bus that goes to El Rodadero.
    Plan to stay:/
    2-3 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #1 of 2 Spas & Wellness in Santa Marta
    • Peaceful 01/09/2017
    • Nice quite beach 19/06/2017
    Other:
  • Save
    Playaca
    Beaches
    See more photos
    solodiana Says:

    Quiet, small, and offering awesome views, Playaca lies farther away from Santa Marta (towards Taganga), and you'll certainly feel like you're in the middle of nowhere. While the infrastructure here is basic, that's also part of the charm. You'll soon find yourself relaxing and unwinding in this little piece of paradise.

    Good for
    • Friends
    • Couples
    • Beach Goer
    • Luxury Traveller
    • Family
    • Like a Local
    Tips
    • You can get here by boat or bus.
    • It´s a private beach, so all services incur a cost here.
    Plan to stay:/
    More than 3 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #12 of 19 things to do in Taganga
    • Nice empty beach 20/02/2017
    • Cheap eats ... fruit Juice ... party 24/10/2016
    • Playaca
    Address:
    KM. 2 VIA TAGANGA
    Taganga 12345
    Colombia
    Phone:
    +57 301 2432724
    Other:
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