In this article we will give you vital information about the best tourist sites in Santa Marta, a destination in Colombia rich in ecotourism, culture, history and natural wonders to discover. From the crystalline waters of the Tayrona National Park to the most important tourist attractions of the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta.

Santa Marta is a tourist city that has it all, its mix of natural beauty and cultural richness makes it the best choice for your next vacation in Colombia. The Pearl of the Caribbean, as it is also known, offers a perfect climate almost all year round and has a variety of unique experiences for every type of tourist.

The Pearl of the Caribbean awaits you with a world of tourist experiences for all types of travelers. Below you will find our selection of the best tourist destinations in Santa Marta:

sitios turisticos parque tayrona

Tayrona Natural Park: The Best Beaches of Santa Marta

A must-see in Santa Marta is the Tayrona National Park, an ecotourism paradise famous for its beautiful white sand beaches and crystal clear waters that contrast with the blue Caribbean Sea and the green rainforest that extends to the shore.

In addition to its natural beauty, Tayrona Park is a place of great cultural importance. It was home to the ancient Tayrona indigenous civilization, and archaeological remains can still be found that show the importance of this pre-Columbian culture, such as terraces and cobblestone roads.

Some of the best known beaches in Tayrona are La Piscinita de Cañaveral, Playa Arenillas, La Piscina Natural, Playa Cabo San Juan del Guía, Playa Cristal and Bahía de Cinto.

If you want more information about this destination, we invite you to read the -> Complete Guide to Visit Tayrona Park, blog where you will find exclusive details about the hiking trails, tips to visit and enjoy each beach, and how to make the most of your visit to Tayrona Park, preserving the nature and culture of the park.

mejores playas del tayrona
tours sierra nevada de santa marta

Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta: A paradise of ecotourism and culture

The Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta is a spectacular tourist destination that offers a unique combination of ecotourism, indigenous tourism and unparalleled natural wealth; this coastal mountain is the highest in the world and is home to diverse ecosystems ranging from warm beaches to indigenous communities.

It is an ideal destination for ecotourism lovers. It offers a wide range of outdoor activities that allow tourists to connect with nature in a responsible and sustainable way. Trekking trails such as those leading to Ciudad Perdida, an ancient indigenous settlement, provide not only physical adventures but also encounters with Colombia’s pre-Columbian history.

Indigenous tourism in the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta is a deeply enriching experience. The Sierra is home to native indigenous communities such as the Kogui, Wiwa, Arhuacos and Kankuamo, who offer visitors a unique insight into their traditions and way of life.

Participating in tours guided by members of these communities not only supports the local economy, but also promotes a deeper understanding of the importance of cultural and environmental conservation in Colombia.

destinos sierra nevada de santa marta

This natural jewel of Colombia is home to must-see destinations for any adventurous traveler. The Lost City, with its archaeological ruins hidden in the jungle, offers a demanding hike with invaluable historical rewards. Bunkuany, recently discovered, promises new insights into the ancestral Tayrona culture.

Also visit the town of Minca, the ecological capital of Colombia, a paradise for coffee and nature lovers that offers serene landscapes and ecotourism experiences, while La Tagua, less known but equally charming, stands out for its natural scenery and rich biodiversity.

playa rodadero santa marta

Rodadero Beach

El Rodadero stands out as one of the most visited tourist sites in Santa Marta. Located just ten minutes from downtown, El Rodadero is a vibrant hub of tourist activity that offers a wide variety of services, including hotel accommodations, diverse cuisine in its restaurants, entertainment in bars and souvenir shopping in souvenir stores.

El Rodadero beach is the perfect place for those looking to enjoy the atmosphere and sunny days by the sea, being very frequented by local, national and foreign tourists.

A short distance away, fifteen minutes by boat, is Playa Blanca. This beach is distinguished by its fine white sand and clear turquoise waters, offering an almost idyllic setting, ideal for those who want a day of rest and tranquility under the sun.

taganga playa grande

Taganga Santa Marta

Taganga, a charming fishing village and one of the most emblematic places in Santa Marta, is located just minutes from the historic center. This charming place beautifully blends local culture with a relaxed atmosphere.

You can savor exquisite seafood or fresh fish in the restaurants located on the beach, by the sea, while enjoying the breathtaking sunsets that Taganga beach has to offer.

Besides enjoying Taganga, you cannot miss the opportunity to visit Playa Grande, one of the most outstanding beaches in Taganga. Accessible by a short and scenic boat ride from Taganga, Playa Grande is the perfect place for those looking to escape the crowds and immerse themselves in calm, crystal clear waters. Here, visitors can relax under the sun on its wide stretch of golden sand, or enjoy water activities such as snorkeling and scuba diving, exploring the rich marine life that this spectacular destination has to offer.

centro historico tours

Historic Center of Santa Marta

Explore the charm of Santa Marta’s historic center, a must-see for any visitor. Walk through its ancient streets and admire the impressive colonial architecture that will transport you to another era. The Cathedral of Santa Marta, located in the Plaza de San Francisco, is just the beginning of a fascinating tour that can include visits to museums and colonial squares.

In addition, you can visit the Bay of Santa Marta and stroll along the Malecon, where the sea breeze complements the spectacular view. Do not miss the rich gastronomic offer of the city, which promises to delight your palate with Caribbean flavors.

If you made it this far, we have an excellent guide to get to know Tayrona Park very well before traveling to Santa Marta; you will find several tips on how to get there, entrance fees, prices, accommodations and recommendations.
Link to the Guide 👉🏼 Tayrona Park Tourist Guide 2024