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Stay in Sta Marta, see Costeno, Tayrona

Buenos Aires...
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Stay in Sta Marta, see Costeno, Tayrona
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Would we be comfortable staying in Sta Marta and doing day excursions to Tayrona and Costeno?

Or is it worth moving to stay in the Park and near Costeno?

10 replies to this topic
Medellin, Colombia
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1. Re: Stay in Sta Marta, see Costeno, Tayrona
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Jeff, where is "Costeno"? Is it a place, a hotel, a beach, a town, what/where? Are you referring to the Costeno beach Hostal, looks like a cool place, my type of place.

Yes you can certainly stay in/near Santa Marta and do day trips into Tayrona park as it is a relatively short distance but why not stay in the park itself, let me tell you it is magical being awaken by the sounds of the birds and animals at 5:40 Am each morning, something many people have never experienced.

Then if you stay in Tayrona you can start your hike from your base camp/hotel in the mid morning when the air is fresh and cool, few people on the trails and what a way to start the day.

Just talking about this makes me want to grab a bag and hop into my car and drive to Tayrona, it is that magical.

If I left now I could be there tomorrow evening (15 hour drive and about 840km, or 2 tanks of gas worth $40. USD).

Edited: 09 October 2021, 18:28
Buenos Aires...
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2. Re: Stay in Sta Marta, see Costeno, Tayrona
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Thanks. I can see that you're a big fan or the area.

I was thinking of the area around Hostel Costeno and Las Naranjos, if we could enjoy that area while staying in Sta Marta or in Park Tayrona or if it were better to move to an accomodation there.

Colombia
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3. Re: Stay in Sta Marta, see Costeno, Tayrona
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It is far better to have your hotel there. Los Narajos is essentially closed to people not staying in the hotels there - they have a gate and a guard at the entrance. Equally, once you see the place, you will not want to go back to Santa Marta.

Costeno beach is a backpacker place, which I would avoid unless that is your thing. Instead, stay at Cayena hotel, which uses the same entrance, and same beach (easy to walk between the two) which is a fantastic place. My wife would like to back there again instead of Los Naranjos. The pool is outstanding. The thing with with beach is that is is not really for swimming. It is rough and ready - there were numerous rescues of people during our two nights there. Unless you are a strong swimmer, you wont want to go in the water.

This is also true for Los Naranjos to a lesser extent. I took my son in there on a calmer day.

Use your car to visit the waterfalls and Polamina from there for the day.

Buenos Aires...
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4. Re: Stay in Sta Marta, see Costeno, Tayrona
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Cayena Beach Hotel looks perfect.

So, Should I skip Santa Marta and just go to Cayena Hotel?

Do we need to rent a car or will taxis be ok?

Colombia
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5. Re: Stay in Sta Marta, see Costeno, Tayrona
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You can take a taxi there, but then it will be a pain to move around, though there are taxis you can use (ostena is a backpacker place, so they dont usually rent cars). Personally, I would rent a car - use Localiza from SM airport. I have used them twice. .

For me, I would not bother with Santa Marta given you have Tayrona / Los Naranjos etc, unless you want to party.

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6. Re: Stay in Sta Marta, see Costeno, Tayrona
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One thing to consider is which part of Tayrona will you be visiting. Some of the areas including perhaps the nicest tourist beach are pretty far inside the park so although reaching the entrance of the park may not be that far, reaching your destinations inside could take quite a bit longer.

Medellin, Colombia
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7. Re: Stay in Sta Marta, see Costeno, Tayrona
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Update Friday October 15, 2021 @ 8:30 AM - My couple bags are packed, checked the oil/gas in my car, and I leave in one hour headed to the coast!

From my apartment in Medellin it is about a 16 hour drive to Santa Marta so I will break it up in 2 days meaning on Sunday I will be dipping my toes once again in the Caribbean ocean. My last visit to the coast was in July so it has been 2.5 months and can't wait.

I have no set plan or time schedule but will just come and go as the wind blows.

In my sights, to name a few stops are: Rodaerdo, Santa Marta, Taganga, Minca, Tayrona, Palomino, Los Naranjos and perhaps even heading west to Barranquilla and Cartagena and wherever "I may roam".

This is a solo road trip, time to reconnect with my inner child, hehehehe and this is the place to do it.

Edited: 15 October 2021, 14:43
Medellin, Colombia
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8. Re: Stay in Sta Marta, see Costeno, Tayrona
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@ Jeff, well here I sit in my beach chair on the beach in Santa Marta/Taganga, it is right before noon and clear sunny skies and warm/hot at already 33 C!

Last night I drove from Santa Marta through Tayrona to say hi to my friends that operate a hostel in Tayrona park then drove back to Santa Marta last night.

I actually drove past Los Naranjos just to check out the road conditions and found it to be splendid, and this was at 10 PM last night.

I have a dedicated post on a separate thread should you want to know the details.

Happy Sunday as I now will swim the Caribbean ocean waters!

Buenos Aires...
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9. Re: Stay in Sta Marta, see Costeno, Tayrona
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Sounds wonderful. I wish I was there now.

Thanks for the info on the roads.

We're kinda thinking of 3 days at the Marriott Resort Playa Dormida and two days at the Cayena Beach Hotel. How does that sound to you?

Medellin, Colombia
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10. Re: Stay in Sta Marta, see Costeno, Tayrona
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@ Jeff, your welcome.

Now the differences of these 2 hotels is night and day, not better nor worse rather just a different experience. I don't think you can make a wrong choice amongst these 2 hotels.

I spent decades of my professional career in the design, entitlements, construction of the major hotel flags so this question is in my wheel house.

Both of these hotels have great reviews.

Basically the Marriott is hip, set in a urban setting and the Cayena, which is located on the east side of Tayrona park is all about nature, tranquility, relaxing and much more private and intimate.

So it depends on what type of experience your after.

Hope this helps.

And BTW I drove by the Marriott early this morning (7 AM), it is a beautiful building stunning to tell the truth.

Edited: 18 October 2021, 02:14
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