We have had many guests and friends ask us which are the best beaches in Santa Marta. And some of our return guests have even asked us if we know of any less traveled beaches in Santa Marta.
In this blog post I’m going to go over some of our favorite secluded beaches and even some secret spots around Santa Marta.
Our Favourite Five Secluded Beaches in Santa Marta
1. Playa Cristal
Do you like to snorkel? Eat fresh fish with your toes in the sea? Relax undisturbed in the tropical sunshine and warm turquoise Caribbean waters. This beach offers some of the safest and calmest waters around Santa Marta, perfect for kids, or non swimmers, with gently shelving sand entering crystal waters. A far cry from the crowded beaches of Santa Marta, Rodadero and Taganga, Playa Cristal in the Parque Tayrona offers seclusion and exclusivity as it is tucked away and 4×4 jeep and boat ride away. Not the easiest beach to reach, it is worth the trip as an exquisite offering rewards the intrepid visitor.
Playa Cristal translates to the Crystal Beach and it lives up to it’s name. It’s crystal clear water and white sand beaches make it a picturesque escape. It’s beautiful coral reefs make it a popular destination for snorkelling with huge shoals of colourful tropical fish darting around the corals. This beach is highly popular so you won’t be alone, but it’s definitely worth going to if you want to relax and it can be pretty quiet outside holiday periods and weekends. The beach closes after 300 visitors enter, ensuring it is never too crowded and remains utterly unspoilt. In peak season you need to arrive early (by 8am!) to ensure entry.
All in all Playa Cristal is about an hour and a quarter from Hotel Boutique Casa Carolina by road and boat. You can take a tour, arrive by private car, or travel in style (and the quickest option) with a private boat charter from Santa Marta’s Marina. Contact our staff for information about Casa Carolina’s exclusive private boat trips.
2. Bahia Concha
This expansive beach is a little closer than Playa Cristal. What we love most about this beach is how the blue water, white sand beaches and the mountains converge together in one seamless landscape. It’s definitely something you’d see on a postcard. Bahia Concha is one of the closest Tayrona beaches to Hotel Boutique Casa Carolina at around 45 minutes by car. It is rarely busy and the wide beach means you can always carve out your own spot by walking a bit further along.
There are no hotels or places to stay; the only option is to camp if you want to stay over night. There’s one restaurant there that serves great fish. Contact our staff for info on our private boat tour to Bahia Concha.
This is Tayrona’s biggest beach. It has big coral reefs, a variety of tropical fish, and it’s all close to shore. You do not need to be an expert snorkeler to see this wonderful underwater spectacle. Neguanje is the beach from which you catch the boat to Playa Cristal, so is a closer and slightly cheaper option instead of going all the way to Cristal, and is still a wonderful and spacious beach.
The best way to get to Neguanje is by boat, so be sure to ask our staff about our boat rides to this paradise.
4. Playa del Amor and Playa Gairaca
This beach is more secluded than the other because it’s more frequented by local fishermen, so there are no shops, restaurants, or many places to stay.
Playa Gairaca’s water is slightly darker, but it’s a perfect place to relax and get away from tourists. Playa del Amor with it’s crystal clear water is ideal for snorkeling and relaxing. You’ll feel like you have the beach to yourself.
These beaches are near each other, and can be reached by taxi or boat. Contact our staff for more info on how to get there.
Secret Santa Marta Beaches
5. Playas Chengue y Wachakyta
These amazingly gorgeous bays are characterized by the tropical forest surrounding their crystal clear waters. They have a large variety of sea life which you can enjoy while snorkeling. Most important of all, these beaches are not frequented by tourists, or by anyone. They can only really be reached by boat or a very difficult – and unheard of – hike. They are true paradise and you will most likely not come across another soul. Ask our staff for more information about our private boat rides and day trips into this exclusive beach.