After hearing about how epic the north coast was from other travellers, it quickly made its way to the top of my list of places to visit in Colombia. As soon as I arrived in Colombia I made some friends who were also super keen to visit La Guarija and we ended up planning a trip together.
We organised our trip with Calle 11 - the hostel we were staying at in Santa Marta. It was a 3 day/2 night trip from Santa Marta all the way to Punta Gallinas, the most northern point of Colombia - the trip cost us roughly 250,000 COP (approx $115 AUD) each.
Our adventure to the Guajira penisula started early in the morning, we were picked up at 4:30am. It was so early, I went straight to sleep in the car for the next 3 hours as we made our way to Riohacha where we stopped to have a quick breakfast. After breakfast we were back on the road and on our way to Cabo del la Vela.
When we arrived, we had a quick lunch at the lodge before heading out to the beach (playa Ojo de Agua) for a dip. The sea collides with the several cliffs and over time weathers it down to create a beautiful landscape.
The day was so hot that we were all itching for a swim in the cool waters - it was sooo dang refreshing when we finally jumped in. Apart from some medium waves perfect for wave jumping the water was pretty calm.
After a quick dip our guide took us to another nearby beach which was quieter and more secluded. As we made out way to the beach we found a vendor that sold beers. We bought a few bottles drank them while we watched sun set over the water and painted the sky.
We headed back to our hammocks after it got dark and had dinner. Dinner was farely simple - rice and locally caught fish. But if you wanted something more extravagant there was an option to pay an extra 25000COP (approx $11AUD) to upgrade to fresh lobster. I went with the lobster - it was delicious and for 11 bucks it was definitely worth.
To close out the night we bought some drinks from the bar and made our way out to the beach to chill - literally in front of our hammocks.
The view of the stars from here was spectacular. The only other time I remember seeing the stars so clearly was when I visited the Sahara desert during new years eve.
This morning we got up out of our hammocks by the beach and jumped straight into the beach for a dip. Then we had some breakfast and we were on our way to Punta Gallinas (the most northern point of Colombia).
We took a break from the road at the Taroa dunes for a dip to cool off. To get to water we had to climb over a massive Taroa dunes, it was crazy because we couldn't see anything but sand until we had reach the peak of the dunes. Over the peak we had an incredible view of the beach.
After lunch we headed up to Punta Gallinas to checked out the most northern point of Colombia. There is an old light house here that marks this spot, otherwise you probably would never know it this was the top of the land mass that is South America.
The rest of the day was spent wandering and exploring the bay near our lodge, swimming and hanging out while we watched another epic sunset.
For dinner I had my last lobster from the Gujiara peninsula. Then we capped the night off the right way, hanging out in the dark, listening to some tunes and staring at the epic view of the night sky for the last time.
This morning the guys decided to head out to a nearby lagoons and mangroves surrounding the inland sea. I decided to skip in favour of exploring the lodge and meeting some more friendly people in the area.
When the guys made it back, we had a quick lunch and then we jumped into a barge which took us on a scenic ride through the turquois waters and mangroves back to our 4WD. We spent the rest of the day driving through desert terrain back to Riohacha where we were picked up by a mini van to bring us the rest of the way back to our hostel in Santa Marta.
DESERT X OCEAN
The last 3 days of adventure to La Guajira was amazing. It was really cool to see the crazy contrast in nature - desert meeting the ocean. I had an incredible time swimming in the cool waters during the hot days and watching the stars come out so clearly at night.
And one of the coolest things about visiting La Guajira was the fact that we were completely disconnected from our tech for 3 days. It was refreshing to get away from all of those distractions and just enjoy the experience.
A visit to La Guajira is a must if you're ever in or visiting Colombia.