Tour the islands on your Yacht
One of the best parts of visiting Colombia is exploring the many islands in the bay of Cartagena. Within an hour’s boat ride from the dock on the mainland, you’ll find dozens of “islas” in this beautiful Caribbean playground. Whether it’s snorkeling or sightseeing, sunbathing or swimming, you’ll find what you’re exactly what you’re seeking inside this tropical wonderland.
Although there are some of these locations you can reach by car, like Baru for example, the more scenic and expedient method is travelling via boat or yacht. Both of these options are surprisingly affordable when compared to a cramped tour bus or crowded day cruise. Plus you have the added advantage of choosing your own destinations and opting for multiple docking and stopping points during your journey.
The Beaches On Baru
If you were to look at a map of the “Islas Del Rosario,” or Rosario Island chain, you’ll see the larger Peninsula de Baru to the east. On one of the most beautiful coastlines in the Caribbean, is where you’ll find Playa Blanca (or white beach) about mid-way down the peninsula. On the Western tip, you’ll experience some great arenas for scuba diving and snorkeling near Punta Baru.
If you’re looking for a party, be sure to stop by Cholon where boats and yachts line the beaches for a year-long, spring break-esque type of an atmosphere. The music is playing and the boats are swaying with scantily clad sunbathers dancing and drinking the afternoon away. If you’re not a partier at heart, there’s one other reason to stop by this hot spot – nearby food vendors will bring your table out into the shallow Caribbean waters so you can dine in the warm ocean.
The Great Isla Grande
One of the largest islands in the Rosario chain, the Isla Grande is surrounded by many other, smaller islands so it makes visiting multiple islands in one trip a realistic possibility. To the east, the Isla Pirata refers to the swashbucklers from centuries past, but could also be associated with some of the resorts on this tiny island that offer their guests private bungalows and beaches. You can also visit other nearby islands like Islas Caribarú – another popular diving and scuba spot.
The Biggest Link In The Rosario Chain
This archipelago chain has been protected by the Colombian government since the 1970’s, so other than some modern additions like an aquarium, these islands remain relatively pristine. If you are going to stop by the Oceanario Aquarium, travellers recommend seeing the daily shark feeding and dolphin show on the big island.
Most travellers, tourists and locals alike will recommend skipping the tour boat experience and rent your own vessel. The problem with taking a day cruise, besides the small crowd that comes along for the ride, you’re also stuck with their schedule and destination. It’s an average experience at best and you’ll only see the most travelled of touristy locations.
With dozens of islands to choose from, don’t limit yourself to simply visiting one venue, even if you’re just cruising the bay for the day. Get the most for your pesos and plan your own Caribbean adventure in the bay of Cartagena.