How to get from Santa Marta to Tayrona: Our recommendations

How to get from Santa Marta to Tayrona: Our recommendations

How to travel from Santa Marta to Tayrona?

Like many other travelers, you have been seduced by the pictures of the Parque Tayrona.

Nestled on the Caribbean Coast, between Santa Marta and Palomino, Tayrona attracts hundreds of thousands of tourists every year.

And, the simplest way to get access to the park is to first stop in Santa Marta.

Must read: Our travel guide to explore Tayrona

The coast in the Tayrona National Park

Santa Marta is a tourist hub

Santa Marta to Tayrona

Santa Marta isn’t a pleasant city – Except for the area around Parque de Los Novios. Or some beaches near Rodadero.

Best Santa Marta highlights (+)

But, there are many highlights to visit all around:

  • Palomino
  • Minca
  • Tayrona National Natural Park
  • Taganga
  • The lost city
  • Cartagena
  • Gorgeous beaches

We wrote a list of the best trips to organize from Santa Marta.

Over the years, more and more tourists have decided to stay in Santa Marta instead of Cartagena.

Therefore, the city is well deserved by the public transports:

  • There is a national airport with flights from Bogota and Medellin | 1 hour
  • There are buses from
    • Cartagena: 4-6 hours
    • San Gil: 13 hours
    • Bogota: 18-20 hours
    • Medellin: 16 hours

Must read: Our travel guide to visit Santa Marta

Best Ways To Travel From Santa Marta To Tayrona

A) Take the public bus Santa Marta – Tayrona

Duration and price (+)

There are two places where you can take the bus Santa Marta to Tayrona:

  • At the main bus station – Outside the city
  • At the Mercado Publico (Market) | Calle 11 con Carrera 11

Bus Santa Marta – Tayrona: 1 hour | Price: Around 8 000 COP

B) Take a bus to Taganga then a boat to Tayrona

Duration and prices (+)

The boat Taganga – Tayrona is the fastest way to get to Cabo San Juan in Tayrona.

First, travel to Taganga:

  • Blue Public buses
  • Taxi

Blue Buses To Taganga – On the Carrera 5 | 25 min | Around 2 000 COP

Taxi Santa Marta – Taganga | 20 min | Around 12 000 COP

Once you’re in Taganga, you have to find a boat to Tayrona National Natural Park

  • Ask one of the boat companies on the dock. I recommend “Chez Boaz”.
  • The last boats leave before 9h30
  • The sea is rough from October to March. This boat ride is scary for the people who are not used to it
  • Boats leave from Cabo San Juan around 4 pm

Boat Taganga – Tayrona | 1 hour | 50 000 COP (1 way)

C) Private transports from Santa Marta

Duration and price (+)

Another easy way to travel to Tayrona from Santa Marta is to contact a private transport

  • Taxi in Santa Marta | Around 80 000 COP | 45 min

Where to travel after Tayrona

Where to stay? What to do? How to get there? Find easily the answers HERE

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  1. Rahooligan says:

    Hi Tom. Fantastic work on this blog! I would like to ask, is it possible to leave Parque Tayrona (particularly Cabo San Juan) in the morning and reach Santa Marta Airport in time for a 12:30 p.m. flight? What are the options for transportation from Tayrona to Santa Marta airport? Thanks for your input!

    • Tom says:

      Hm, it’s maybe doable, but I won’t recommend it because everything can happen in Colombia ^^.

      – You need to walk 1.5 h to reach the end of the trail + wait for a shuttle to drive you at the Zaino entrance (or walk the last 4kms).
      – You need 1.5 h to get to the airport
      – It’s better if you arrive at least 1h before your flight departure.

      If you want to do it, you should:

      – Leave at 7 am from Cabo San Juan
      – Grab a taxi at the Zaino entrance and rush to the airport.

      Also, I’m not sure you will find a taxi ready to leave at 9-10 am. You will need to book it, just to be sure.

      Good luck 🙂

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