This South American country is an unrivaled gem in tourism due to its rich culture and good people. It’s so beautiful that many people yearn to travel here, and every year over three million tourists visit this country.
But not only is Colombia famous for its rich culture, entertainment, and great food. It also has some of the most beautiful beaches in the whole of the Caribbean that are perfect for vacations.
Ideally located on the Caribbean coast, Colombia’s beaches are a one-stop destination for beach life and adventure. With their breathtaking views and a wide range of activities on hand, Colombia’s beaches cater to all walks of life. An excellent way to explore this great country is by taking in the beautiful coastline via the sea or land.
Colombia has beaches of every type and in every corner of the country. To help you get ready for your next adventure, we have compiled a list of the eleven best beaches in Colombia that you should know.
Playa Blanca or White Beach
Playa Blanca, also known as White Beach, is one of the most famous beaches in Cartagena and Colombia. It is located in the Magdalena Medio region, close to La Guajira and El Quindio, in the northern part of Colombia, about two hours from Cartagena.
This beach has a beautiful collection of shops, restaurants, cafés, and a large parking lot for those driving down. Several hotels there offer comfortable accommodations to tourists, too.
The water along this stretch of coast is calm and shallow, and there are a lot of beautiful beaches that one can explore while on the long shoreline. Here, you can enjoy a quiet, relaxed, and serene time.
Playa Blanca is also one of the most popular destinations in Colombia for surfers due to the waves that rise from the sea and produce good surfing conditions.
Playa Blanca is not a very big beach, but it is beautiful with its bright white sand, clear blue water, and palm trees waving in the wind.
Las Islas del Rosario
The Rosario Islands are an archipelago off Colombia’s Caribbean coast. Beach days, snorkeling excursions, and cocktail sunsets are all part of the things you can enjoy here. All of this is only a 45-minute boat ride away from Cartagena. For most travelers, that is sufficient reason to pay a visit.
The Rosario Islands are one of the 46 national natural parks in Colombia and were established in 1988 to protect what is one of the most important coral reefs on the Colombian coast.
Locals and tourists flock to the Rosario Islands to enjoy this open sea aquarium and oceanarium. Activities such as snorkeling and fishing are also available, for sports enthusiasts.
This is a magical place with white sands, crystal clear waters, and mostly unspoiled landscapes that seem to have come from a dream.
The archipelago is covered by lush Caribbean vegetation and surrounded by transparent waters whose hues range from purple (due to the coral reef) to turquoise.
Playa Rodadero is located in the Magdalena region of Colombia. This beach features clear blue waters and white sand, making it ideal for those looking to relax on a beautiful beach during their vacation.
The water here is clear and shallow, and you will find a variety of fish while snorkeling in its waters. One can easily spot sea turtles on the beach as well.
This beach is a great place to spend your weekend. It’s an ideal destination for those looking to enjoy the coastline in a quiet and private setting. Although this is not an overly popular tourist destination, it’s one of the best beaches in Colombia for travelers who are looking to enjoy their time away from the hustle and bustle of modern civilization.
Playas de Providencia
Playas de Providencia is an archipelago consisting of the North, South, and West Providencia islands. On the north side, there is an island known as Mucura, on the east side, another island named Quitasueno, and on the south side, there is a small island called Santa Catalina.
These three islands are part of Colombia’s San Andres Archipelago and are known for their variety of beaches. They have the recognition of the best beaches in Colombia.
The archipelago consists of beautiful white sand beaches with clear turquoise water and swaying palm trees. It features fine-stone resorts, scenic beaches, quaint restaurants, and charming coves. For those who prefer more modernity, several resorts have been built since the mid-’90s.
These islands are also perfect for other types of activities, including swimming, fishing, camping, boating, and hiking.
Johnny Cay is one of the most known and praised cays in San Andres.
It is located about one mile in front of El Centro and is sometimes called Islote Sucre, the island of sugar, because of its white-sand beaches. Relaxing and picnicking are the main activities on this fantastic beach.
It is an ideal place for those whose only goal is to relax, leave behind their worries, and enjoy the breeze from the Caribbean Sea. The water here temperature ranges from 68 to 74 degrees. Pretty warm for all your swimming needs.
Johnny Cay also offers fishing and snorkeling opportunities along with a pristine beach. There are several restaurants on the island to enjoy some delicious seafood.
The whole place is covered with green trees, and the atmosphere is quite pleasant. This small beach is perfect for a weekend away from the city and offers peace and calm in its natural surroundings.
Parque Nacional Natural Tayrona
Parque Nacional Natural Tayrona is located in Colombia’s Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta. These mountains are the highest peaks in Colombia and are mainly composed of Andesite formations.
Several stunning natural attractions can be explored within its boundaries, including numerous lakes, beautiful rivers, waterfalls, mountainous forests, and much more. This park is home to around 40 lakes and six rivers that flow from high mountains through narrow valleys. There are several vegetation zones found here.
This beautiful park is a special place to enjoy nature and all its colorful beauty, but also an ideal spot for outdoor activities and hiking.
The park is home to several wilderness areas and offers a wide variety of wildlife. It is also home to approximately 160 birds and more than 50 mammals, including some rarely seen in other parts of the world. There are some protected areas located in the park. At this beach, sunrise and sunset can simply be incredible sights.
The beautiful Costeño Beach is home to some natural attractions, and it is also a popular destination for visitors. It’s one of the best beaches in Colombia to relax and enjoy the sun.
It features clear blue waters and white sand, making it a must-see destination for anyone traveling through this area. The water here is calm and shallow, making it ideal for swimming and enjoying water sports like boating, kayaking, snorkeling, and fishing.
Costeño Beach is also famous for its abundance of beautiful and colorful birds. The hummingbirds can be seen here during the day and at night.
This beach is also home to several local restaurants serving delicious food. There is a fresh-water lagoon nearby, where you can go swimming, relax by the lagoon, or rent kayaks or boats to enjoy this beautiful place.
Perfectly placed on the Pacific, this is one of those places where the jungle perfectly meets the ocean, consequently creating an ecosystem you wouldn’t find in any other nation.
Guachalito is a beautiful stretch of coastline. It is away from the city crowds and provides some of the best surfing conditions on the coast. You can enjoy your day at the beach in peace because Guachalito is a quiet, private property.
Guachalito has been called the world’s best surf spot by the X Games television network, and you’ll find many pictures of surfers surfing this beautiful spot. The wind in this spot isn’t as strong as other beaches to the north on the coast, so it makes for an excellent family-friendly beach or party. It also has a few restaurants for both lunch and dinner.
Are you an adventure seeker? Punta Gallinas has you covered. The northernmost point of South America is on many travelers’ bucket lists and it’s not hard to tell why.
This remote spot boasts miles and miles of sand with beautiful ocean views. Walk the dunes, dip in the sea, or kitesurf. Visiting Punta Gallina is also a great opportunity to get to know the local indigenous culture – the Wayuu.
If you decide to stay overnight, you will be rewarded with a breathtaking sunset and starry sky. You might also get a chance to sleep in the traditional Wayuu ranchería and try some of their dishes, such as friche or stewed fish.
The best way to get to Punta Gallinas is through an agency. It’s much safer than going on your own and they will take care of your food, transport, as well as accommodation.
Playas de Palomino
Playas de Palomino is one of the best beaches in Colombia. It is another beach that forms part of the San Andres Archipelago on the north coast of Colombia.
It has been a popular vacation destination for many years. The entire island chain consists of clear turquoise waters, white-sand beaches, and palm-covered hills.
The islands are spread around the Caribbean Sea and are part of the Darién Province. The largest island here is Palomino, surrounded by smaller islands and private cays.
The islands are not very developed, and there is less traffic on their shores. And so, the best way to reach these beaches is by private boat or a ferry.
This tranquil beach is one of the best beaches in Colombia, and you can also go snorkeling there to see some of the beautiful fish species in this area.
Although Bahia Solano does not often appear on the list of most visited destinations in Colombia, it is growing in popularity as more and more tourists are drawn to its unique features.
First and foremost, the jungle astride Choco and Antioquia makes it only accessible by plane or water. Take a plane or charter flight from Bogotá, Cali, Medellin, or Quibdo for the first choice.
On the Pacific coast, you can surf, snorkel, dive, and watch dolphins, turtles, a variety of flora and fauna and the internationally famed humpback whales.
From July to October, beachgoers can also spot the whale migration and “whale dances” from the beach.
Bahia Solano has a unique ecosystem that includes mangroves, pristine black sand beaches and exotic and delicious gastronomy.
Keep an eye out for the following dates:
Whale migration and dances can be seen from late June until mid-October.
September is the best month to see baby whales and migratory birds from multiple countries.
May is optimal for catching the fabled flying fish.
April is the month to see leatherback turtles laying eggs
Kitesurfing is one of the main attractions on this beach. The winds pick up here around 2 pm and all the kitesurfers come out. Even if you are not a kitesurfer, it’s entertaining to watch them fly over the waves while their colorful kites hang in the air. The cost of lessons is quite affordable in Colombia, making it a great place to learn this popular activity.
La Boquilla beach is surrounded by hotels and several modern apartment complexes, but it is rarely busy. There are a number of restaurants near the beach that offer outdoor dining and delicious lunches and dinners.
The western edge, the most built-up area, is usually the safest part of the beach. Further west, away from the towers near the small village, theft can occur, especially if you leave your personal belongings unattended while you swim.
Colombia has more than 1,100 miles of coastline along the Pacific and Atlantic. Many white-sand and clear-blue-water beaches have made Colombia one of the top destinations for beachgoers.
There are many islands and cays spread across the Caribbean Sea, offering a variety of beautiful beaches that one can visit while on vacation.
The best part about these islands is their little popularity. There are only a few tourists along their shores, which means you will have a chance to enjoy your time away with complete privacy.
Those were our picks of the best beaches in Colombia, and we hope this list has helped you determine which beach is ideal for your next holiday in Colombia.
Manzanillo del Mar
The distance between Manzanillo del Mar and the old city of Cartagena is only 15 minutes.
To avoid the crowds and beach vendors in Bocagrande and La Boquilla, head to this beach. This place is also very popular for kiteboarding. Depending on the season, the winds usually pick up around 2 of the clock daily.
Since you can easily park your car on the sand and set up your grill, lounge chairs and tables right next to it, Manzanillo Del Mar is the ideal beach for a large family gathering. Just open the tailgate and doors when you want to play music and serenade the beach.
This is one of the few undeveloped stretches of coast near Cartagena. There is less going on here than in La Boquilla, but it is a safer neighborhood with less crime and a more family-oriented vibe.