Located an hour from Santa Marta by bus, this place is an absolute gem. A gorgeous stretch of beach where the palm tree jungle meets the sea. A perfect place to relax and get away from it all for a couple of days.
Palomino is a small village with lots of accommodation options from beachfront hostels and cheaper options a short walk from the sea. There was a lot of building going on when we were here so we think this place is about to boom. Get there before it loses its rustic charm.
When you get off the bus head down the only dirt road that goes all the way to the beach. There are plenty of shops, bars, restaurants and accomodation along the way. We stayed in La Pousada, which was about 1/2 way to the beach. For 60,000cop here you get a private room with aircon, a pool with plenty of outdoor chill areas and gardens, and around half the price of staying right on the beach.
The best thing to do here is to go tubing in the river. For 15,000 cop a motorbike guy will take you for a 10 minute ride into the jungle where you trek for another 20 minutes or so carrying your inner tube. Then it’s time for the most relaxing and fun experience you can have – floating for two hours along the clean calm river to the ocean. The views of the jungle are simply breathtaking and the opportunities to hear and see amazing bird life is a priceless opportunity. The ride finishes where the jungle and river meets the beach and it flows horizontally to the beach. It’s then a 30min walk back the Palomino’s main beach area. This was such a great and cheap activity – just remember to wear sunscreen as you will get super burnt without even realizing.
There’s not too much else to do here, but we think that’s the point. Go for a long walk on the jungle beach and enjoy the scenery. Swimming here is not as friendly as the beach is quite rough and only suitable for experienced swimmers. To compensate there are some good bars and restaurants to chill at on the beach. Or if you’re a longterm traveller grab a couple of cervezas from the local store and sit on the beach to watch the sunset and entertainment of acrobatic and artesenal hippies floating around.
Plenty of tour operators around town are also offering expensive tours to a local indigenous village. You see the people around town and on the beach dressed in all white with their mochillas.