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Gateway to the Sierra Nevada with a proud colonial past

Santa Marta is South America's oldest surviving city and the second most important colonial city on Colombia's Caribbean coast. Now a busy port, it still retains a lot of its colonial heritage and is noticeably quieter and more relaxed than its neighbour Cartagena, although a lot of its attraction is as much to do with what surrounds it. It's the gateway for trips into the unique Tayrona National Natural Park, and for longer guided treks to the Lost City (Teyuna) archaeological site in the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta mountains. Santa Marta is also significant as the final stop in Simon Bolivar, the great libertador of Latin America’s, life. His villa, "La Quinta de San Pedro Alejandrino" is just a short taxi ride from the city center. 


Sat at the foot of the stunning Sierra Nevada range, (the highest coastal mountains in the world) and 4 hours by coach along the seaboard from Cartagena, Santa Marta is small and easily navigated on foot. Parque Tyrona is only a 1 hour transfer away and can be visited as a day trip as well as for longer stays.

Best time to go

Santa Marta is a destination that can be visited anytime of the year owing to an ideal temperature and low rainfall levels. Usually the months of June to September are the peak tourist seasons and Parque Tyrona especially can get a little crowded in these months, though not uncomfortably so.

Latin Routes tip:

Try the beaches going the other way along the coast from Parque Tyrona to  Palomino and the beaches around it are often nearly deserted or occupied by locals only.

If you would like to begin creating your perfect Colombia holiday, Simply complete the enquiry form to get in touch.

Alternatively call our Travel Specialists on 020 8546 6222.

Looking for inspiration? Check out some of our Colombia itineraries.

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From your first booking with us, you’ll become a member of My Routes Rewards and begin collecting points for every holiday you book!


Our Truly Individual Holidays allow you to choose the destinations, inclusions & budget

Winner of 'Tour Operator of the Year - Small' at the 2021 Travel Industry Awards by TTG

Winner of 'Best Tour Operator' at the 2019 & 2018 L.A.T.A. Achievement Awards

All of our holidays are ATOL protected (11104), for your complete peace of mind


The Travel Industry Awards 2021 - Tour Operator Of The Year - Small Latin American Travel Association Achievement Awards 2019 - Tour Operator Of The Year Latin American Travel Association Achievement Awards 2018 - Tour Operator Of The Year

Why book with Latin Routes?

  • Tailormake every part of your Latin America holiday including the duration, destinations, inclusions and budget
  • From charming guesthouses to 5* luxury, we have a style of accommodation to suit you
  • Our Travel Specialists will help you to create your perfect holiday to Latin America

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  • We continually receive excellent reviews from our clients and have a fantastic score on the independent review website, Trustpilot.
  • All of our holidays are ATOL protected (11104), for your complete peace of mind
  • An assured member of the Association of Independent Tour Operators (AITO)

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