Cartagena Colombia beaches

Cartagena Colombia beaches

Best beaches in Cartagena Colombia

Cartagena beaches are numerous, and it might be hard to decide on which one to visit. Some of them are located directly in the city, some of them on the nearby islands, and they all have their specificities, depending on what you prefer to do.

Follow our guide to find the best beaches in Cartagena Colombia and have a great beach holiday in the Caribbean!

Cheap flights and hotels Cartagena de Indias

1 – Rosario islands Cartagena best beaches near Cartagena

The best beaches in Cartagena are actually near the city, at about one hour away by boat, on Rosario islands, which is an archipelago of 28 islands, some of them as small as a one house island, and some of them large enough to host a few resorts.

It is possible to go there either for day trip, with eventual hotel pickup, boat trip go and back, access to a beach (which are usually privatized by the hotel resorts), and lunch on the island, for about 200000COP (65$US / 55€) per person. Usually children have to pay full price to access these resorts, unlike most hotels on the continent.

Additional activities can be bought once at the resort, like snorkeling for 40000COP (13$US / 11€), or a visit at the open-sea oceanarium.

Our personal favourite for a day trip is Isla del Pirata, a small island with a pirate theme, which only hosts one hotel with a few hut rooms.

There are many options on the islands to stay a night there, usually very expensive, minimum 100$US per person. And, again, children pay full price, even if they sleep in the same bed as the adults...

A dream week in Cartagena de Indias, Colombia

2 – Bocagrande Cartagena nightlife and beaches

The best beach in Cartagena de Indias city, recommended by locals, is Boca Grande beach.

Why? For three main reasons:

  • nice clean and large beaches facing the Caribbean sea and the sunset,

  • most comfortable of all beaches in Cartagena de India with sun beds, while other beaches only have chairs,

  • not as many beach sellers bothering you as on other places around.

This beach is a great place to hang out the whole day, and having lunch on the beach is definitely worthy, the street sellers are actually bringing good quality food cooked nearby.

After having booked a sun bed and the corresponding beach umbrella, ask the guy taking care of you for much he can bring you drinks or food. He will usually do it for cheaper than the beach sellers if you negotiate properly, and will offer a must faster and reliable service.

Prices on the beach in Boca Grande Cartagena:

  • 2 sun beds for 30000COP (10$ / 8.5€), easily negotiated to 20000COP (6.5$ / 5.5€),

  • 1 beer for 5000COP (1.6$ / 1.4€), easily negotiated to 4000COP (1.3$ / 1.1€),

  • Cocada, Colombian style coconut candy for 2000COP (0.65$ / 0.55€),

  • Grilled fish lunch pack for 12000COP (3.9$ / 3.35€),

  • Taxi from the center for 10000COP (3.25$ / 2.8€,taxi prices are fixed in Cartagena).

Cocadas Blancas (Colombian-Style Coconut Candy) recipe

Best spot on Boca Grande beach? In front of the Intercontinental hotel.

Hotel InterContinental Cartagena
Hotel Cartagena Plaza
Boca Grande hotels
Holiday Inn Express BocaGrande

3 – Playa Baru Cartagena

Isla Barú Cartagena beaches are among the most popular ones in Cartagena de Indias, especially as Playa Blanca en isla Baru Cartagena is a very busy one, mostly visited by locals and apparently not so much by tourists.

However, the island Baru Colombia – which is actually not an island but a peninsula – has plenty of other resorts and beaches.

It is possible to go around Baru island Cartagena for snorkeling around island Cholon Colombia, which is also the spot of choice for yacht parties and stag parties.

For a resort, a great option is Isla Del Encanto , with a day trip for 3 persons for 500000COP (160$ / 140€), plus 40000COP per person for snorkeling trip (13$ / 11€). It can fully be organized by Discover Cartagena, like they did for us – and they can surely propose you other packages more adapted to your needs if necessary, as well as take you to the best things to do in Cartagena Colombia.

Discover Cartagena on Facebook
Discover Cartagena on Instagram
Cartagena city tours – day tours – Discover Cartagena

How to get to Isla Baru from Cartagena?

Getting to Isla Baru from Cartagena is by boat, taking about one hour, even though it is technically accessible by land. Plenty of boats offer a service, and all hotels there have their own boat taxi service, which can be bought directly at the pier in Cartagena port.

Baru Cartagena hotels
Isla Del Encanto Cartagena day trip

Have you read?

4 – Castillogrande beach

Another nice beach in the city of Cartagena de Indias is Castillogrande, located at the tip of the peninsula, right at the bottom of the Miami-like buildings.

Lot of street sellers, but very nice sand beach with plenty of space to play in the sand and in the warm water.

Prices on the beach in CastilloGrande Cartagena:

  • 2 chairs for 15000COP (4.9$ / 4.2€), easily negotiated to 12000COP (3.9$ / 3.35€),

  • 1 beer for 3500COP (1.1$ / 1€),

  • 1 juice for 2500COP (0.8$ / 0.7€),

  • inflatable horse and sand castle building tools for 30000COP (9.7$ / 8.4€), negotiated to 23000COP (7.5$ / 6.4€),

  • Mangoviche, raw mango with pepper salt and limon for 2000COP (0.65$ / 0.55€),

  • Arepa with cheese, 1500COP (0.5$ / 0.4€) with Colombian cheese, 4000COP (1.3$ / 1.1€) with mozzarella, both of them negotiated for 5000COP (1.6$ / 1.4€).

Cartagena hotels

5 – Marbella playa

The Marbella beach Cartagena is a set of rather popular and small beaches, with great Caribbean sea view.

They generally consists of about 10 seating spaces, and a small beach cornered by rocks, making it pretty dangerous when wind is strong.

However, it is at walking distance from some great hotels, like the Ibis Cartagena Marbella, and the beaches are rather quiet both in terms of animation and of beach sellers.

The Marbelle Colombia beaches are a good choice for a short beach time, and are easily close enough to the city center and old town.

Ibis Cartagena Marbella

6 – La Boquilla Cartagena beaches

La Boquilla is one of the largest beaches in Cartagena, with a hundred meters large sand beach, and is borded by some of the nicest and most expensive hotels in the city.

The area is great for the resort hotels, but not so much for the beach itself, as it is too large for the amount of guests actually going there, and feels pretty lonely.

Also, there aren't much things to do at a walking distance, except going from the beach to the hotel.

Not many shops, restaurants or bars around, and the cultural things are pretty far.

As the beach is mostly deserted, it isn't that easy to get food or drinks while enjoying the sun on the beach.

However, our favourite hotel in Cartagena is there, the Radisson Cartagena Ocean Pavillon Hotel, which has awesome rooftop jacuzzi with Caribbean sea view.

Boquilla in English means nozzle, beak, or mouthpiece, because the beach does look like the beak of Cartagena when seen from above.

Radisson Cartagena Ocean Pavillon Hotel

Things to do in Cartagena

Cartagena de Indias is of course great for beach leisure, with plenty of beaches both in town and at a relatively short travel time by boat.

It is right next to protected coral reefs, making it one of the best places in Colombia for underwater activities, such as snorkeling or diving.

The outdoor cultural nightlife is great, with open air free concerts and other animations in the old town for example.

The old town is amazing, with its 11km of walls from the colonial era, and its beautiful colonial style buildings and tight streets.

An amazing way to enjoy them is to take a photography tour. Paola H Sanchez offers great ones, which will take you to the most photogenic areas there.

Paola Sanchez photography tours on Facebook
Paola Sanchez photography tours on Instagram
Paola H Sánchez photography tours

It is also know for its nightlife, with plenty of bars and clubs, and there are many legends about it being a great place for Colombian girls.

As the city is oriented towards the West, it also offers amazing sunsets on the Caribbean sea, which are best seen from the fortifications heights.

It is great for chocolate and coffee tasting, in the awesome Choco Museo, also a place of choice to get great gifts to bring back home.

What is sure, is that it is a great place for short weekend getaway as well as for week long – or more – beach holidays.

Find The Best Cartagena Beaches In Colombia
Cartagena city tours – day tours – Discover Cartagena
Cartagena Colombia hotels, hostel Cartagena, Cartagena accomodation
Cheap flights and hotels Cartagena de Indias

The 6 best beaches in Cartagena Colombia ranked

There are many beaches in Cartagena, but the best beach in Cartagena de Indias is actually a beach on the Rosario islands, close to the city.

The other beaches in Cartagena are the following, as ranked:

  • Rosario islands Cartagena best beaches near Cartagena,

  • Bocagrande Cartagena nightlife and beaches,

  • Playa Baru Cartagena,

  • Castillogrande beach,

  • Marbella playa,

  • La Boquilla Cartagena beaches.

While on the beach in Cartagena Colombia, do not forget to try one of their famous, and also very tasty, Colombian coconut candy, called a cocada. It doesn’t cost much and tastes amazing!

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