In Santa Marta, I found that the Magical Realism of García Márquez is not a metaphor. It is really the poetic, impressive perspective its people have toward life.

Laura Damme



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Santa Marta: Travel guide

Vacations with the magic of having it all

Santa Marta vacations: Unforgettable Sunsets in Taganga

Santa Marta vacations: Unforgettable Sunsets in Tagangaa

Get to know Santa Marta and the Sierra Nevada thru this tourism and travel guide, where you will find tips and top tourism destinations.

Santa Marta, the Sierra Nevada, the bay and all their surroundings are full of indescribable magic. To begin with, Santa Marta is the oldest city in South America and holds an unrivalled architectural heritage that evokes the times of the banana bonanza.A perfect paradise, for your next vacation.

The Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta is home to a unique and complex network of ecosystems and guards archaeological remains of the Tayrona culture in sites like Pueblito and Ciudad Perdida, with their enigmatic terraces and perfectly designed roads. The indigenous Kogi and Arhuaco peoples inhabit the Sierra Nevada of Santa Marta with their profound cosmic wisdom. Birdwatching in the Sierra Nevada is a unique experience when you are a nature lover.

Santa Marta: the Sierra Nevada ,the bay and surrounding areas have a certain charm that is hard to describe

The beaches of the Parque Nacional Natural Tayrona, fringed by a virgin and exuberant nature, are among the most beautiful in the world. The rivers and jungles that descend the mountainside are full of animal life. Parrots and hollering monkeys stand out as they alert other animals to the presence of hikers.

The Ciénaga Grande de Santa Marta is the stage for surreal sunrises where the line of the horizon is so hazy that observers cannot tell whether they are sailing on the skies or gliding on the water. Taganga, on the contrary, is famous for its sunsets, which can be watched from any of its many beach kiosks while enjoying a meal or a snack. The profuse biodiversity of the region is an object of study by scientists from all over the world, who come to this mysterious land to visit its incredible national parks and wildlife sanctuaries.

An ideal way to see Santa Marta is to walk through the Historic Downtown area, stopping at the Cathedral, the museums and the Camellón de Bastidas for a romantic holiday.

The Quinta de San Pedro Alejandrino is the house where Simon Bolívar passed away in 1830. It was declared a sanctuary of the fatherland by the national government, and is home to the Museo Bolivariano, which holds many of the Liberator’s personal belongings. The house is surrounded by beautiful gardens where native species proliferate.

Places to visit on vacations

Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta, El Rodadero, Pozos Colorados, Bello Horizonte, Taganga, Bahía Concha, Playa Muerto, Playa Blanca, Playa Cristal, Playa Grande, Neguanje, the historic center, the Bastidas wharf, the Quinta de San Pedro Alejandrino, El Rodadero aquarium, Mundo Marino, Museo del Oro. Parque Tayrona, Cañaveral, Arrecifes, Pueblito Chayrama, Quebrada Valencia, the Guachaca, Buritaca, and Don Diego rivers, Ciénaga, Parque Isla de Salamanca, Teyuna, or Ciudad Perdida, and Jardín Agua Viva.

The ideal tour for your holiday

  • Walking around the historical center and visiting the cathedral and the museums; from the Bastidas promenade, you can enjoy a romantic sunset.
  • A boat tour to the beaches.
  • Scuba diving in gorgeous reefs.
  • A night of dancing to the beat of native drums.
  • The Sierra Nevada of Santa Marta.
  • The Quinta de San Pedro Alejandrino.
  • The Mamancana Natural Reserve, for extreme sports and adventure.
  • The village of Taganga.
  • The Parque Tayrona.
  • Swimming with dolphins at the Acuario El Rodadero.


Average temperature is 28º C (82.4º F).


2 meters (6 ft.) above sea level.


Santa Marta is situated at 11º 15’ 18’’ latitude north and 70º 13’ 45’’ longitude west.


The Simón Bolívar airport can service up to three aircraft simultaneously. It is located only five minutes from the high-end hotels and convention centers of the Bello Horizonte and Pozos Colorados areas, ten minutes from El Rodadero, and fifteen minutes from the historical center of Santa Marta.

How to get there

Avianca has four flights a day from Bogota and one from Medellin. AeroRepública makes two daily flights from Bogota and three a week from Cali. Foreign visitors arriving at any of the country’s international airports can make a flight connection to Santa Marta or travel by road. Roads are in a good condition, and traveling to Venezuela is easy on the Troncal del Caribe.


Fondo de Promoción Turística de Santa Marta
Phone: + 57 (5) 422-7548
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Map of Santa Marta,  Colombia


Calle 28A Nº 13A-15 Piso 36

Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Tourism Fondo de Promoción Turistica PROCOLOMBIA

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