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Palomino

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Understand[edit]

Palomino is a town with a special character. The town itself is mainly a collection of houses near the main road. Here is where you can find the shops, bakeries, drugstores and restaurants in town. The real beauties of Palomino are the beaches, rivers and mountains. During your stay in Palomino, you may encounter indigenous people and local fishermen doing their daily work. This makes it an interesting destination for people who want to see the customs of the indigenous cultures of the Sierra Nevada.

Palomino has a long (approx. 5km) white beach with an average temperature of 28°C. You can also see the snow peaks of the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta from the beach.

Please practice responsible/low impact tourism when you visit this magical, almost untouched place. Help us protect it.

Get in[edit]

You can arrive by public transport (bus, minibus and taxi) or private car.

By car[edit]

Take the main highway (90) from Santa Marta towards Riohacha. Palomino is located at KM72, about 1 hour.

By bus[edit]

Buses from Santa Marta to Palomino cost COP8,000 (January 2015). They leave from near the "mercado" at the intersection of Calle 11 and Carrera 11. The approximate travel time is 1 hour 45 minutes. You can wait for one of the buses at "La Bomba" if coming from Minca, but since they usually only leave when full there might not be space and it would have been quicker to just catch a bus back into town. You shouldn't have this problem if trying to get on from the highway outside Tayrona, since passengers get off there, leaving vacant seats.

By taxi[edit]

Taxis can be up to COP150,000 (Nov 2014) - be prepared to bargain - but the trip takes only 1 hour.

Get around[edit]

It is about a 20 minute walk to the beach from the highway, there will be plenty of mototaxis waiting at the bus stop to take you down for COP3,000.

Do[edit]

  • Ecological walk into the Sierra Nevada.
  • Visit to indigenous communities.
  • Relax in a hammock overlooking the sea with a good book.
  • Horseback riding on the beach.
  • Tubing down the Palomino river to the ocean. As soon as you get off the bus, the motor taxi drivers will come and you can negotiate the price for the tube. Tube rental is about $10,000 pesos, but with a guide, it could range from $20,000 pesos to $30,000 pesos. You can get the mototaxi to drive you where you will start your hike. The hike takes 30 to 40 minutes hiking up and down the mountain, however it is not very strenuous. Although the hike 'can' be done wearing flip-flops (locals do it) it is recommended to wear comfortable walking shoes—especially sneakers. Make sure you bring a waterproof bag or backpack as you will be floating down the river with all your belongings and everything will get wet. Alternatively, leave anything that can't get wet in town. If you are staying in any hotel in town they can arrange the tubing for you. It is relaxing and fun.

See[edit]

The snowy peaks of the Sierra Nevada mountains while lying on the beach.

Eat[edit]

There are many restaurants along the beach, along the road to the beach and on the highway. The general rule is like anywhere - the closer to the beach you get, the more expensive.

Drink[edit]

A beer or a coconut on the beach will both cost you about COP3,000.

Sleep[edit]

There are many hostels that offers dorms, camping and hammocks (use their tents/hammocks or bring your own). Most of these are not on the main booking websites.

Partial list of accommodations in Palomino:

  • Eco- Lodges in Palomino [1]
  • Hotel la Jorara [2]
  • Reserva Natural El Matuy
  • Forest Bathing Resort
  • Camping Las Gaviotas
  • Mountains of San Salvador
  • Playa Larga
  • La Casa de Guadua Eco Hostal
  • Turtle Reserve
  • La Boca de Palomino
  • Hostel Ematur

Get out[edit]

Buses leave frequently back to Santa Marta from the opposite side of the road to where you were dropped off. You can also get out at one of the entrances to Tayrona.

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