Tayrona National Park in Colombia sounded too good to be true.
Mountainous jungle crawling towards endless stretches of beach and blue ocean — it seemed the stuff of postcards that regularly disappoint. Now, after a two day visit, I can now tell you first hand that its exactly as everyone with wide-eyed remembrance will tell you — picture perfect paradise.
Tayrona National Park is located on the Caribbean shore of Colombia and is usually accessed from one of the two popular towns, Santa Marta and Taganga — both of which are about an hours drive.
Once you arrive at the park’s entrance, it takes about two hours to walk to the beaches, but its a leisurely hike that’s mostly flat and provides plenty of breaks for ocean-side photography and critter watching. There are several options for beaches to spend the night in hammocks or tents. I chose Cabo San Juan as its the most popular for backpackers and I was on my own — eager to find some people to enjoy the views with. Don’t be scared off by its “backpacker” label though — Cabo San Juan is the most crowded of the campgrounds but there is still plenty of room to find your spot on the beach and feel as though there’s no one there but you and the birds.
But of course, don’t take my word for it. Tayrona must be experienced first hand to understand the surprising serenity of Colombia’s most prized stretch of land. You’ll feel like you’re King or Queen of the jungle AND the ocean, as two of the most fascinating ecosystems come together to form an awe-inspiring landscape that is yours to experience…