Just Returned From → Golden & Invermere, British Columbia. Headed To → Vancouver Island, British Columbia.

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Photo Essay: Travelling Colombia’s Remote and Rugged Pacific Coast


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Are you looking for the next undiscovered travel destination? Here it is — Bahia Solano, on Colombia’s Pacific Coast. After a week spent touring the coastline, I feel I barely scratched the surface. Here are the highlights (and yes, it’s safe):

In This Colombia Article You Will Discover:

  • Reasons to Travel to Colombia
  • Whales & Turtles
  • Regional Eco-Lodges
  • Colombia is Safe!

Colombia is one of the world’s next Big Travel Destinations. Off-radar for too long, following decades of violence, Colombia is back in a big way — this is illustrated by the nearly two million tourists who visited in 2012. However, hotspots like Cartagena and Bogota hog most of these travellers. If you want to get off-the-beaten-path in an already off-the-beaten-path country, try the Pacific Coast.

I recently spent 10 days in Colombia, most of which was occupied with touring eco-lodges in the Bahia Solano region. It was safe and it was glorious.

Imagine: butterflies so bright they seem to glow; whales flipping their tales and singing (yes, you can hear them!); Olive Ridley turtles locked in a mating embrace; boundless nature preserves exploding with life; empty beaches with temperate seas; remote eco-lodges that welcome you like family; unique cultural experiences; dense rainforests with fascinating endemic species; and so much more.

Scroll through these 12 photos, brush up on your Spanish (seriously) and get ready to chalk up some Travel Cache. It’s time to explore Colombia:

(Click Here For Part Two of my Colombia Photo Essay)

(Click Here to Read About My Adventure In-Depth)


Releasing newborn Olive Ridley turtles in Utria National Park.


A local fisherman uses his crude, traditional setup to angle for dinner.


A secluded beach south of Nuqui, Bahia Solano.


Relaxing at El Cantil, one of the best eco-lodges in the region.


Colombia is home to unique, endemic species of flora and fauna.


A hammerhead shark fetus on display at Utria National Park.


We didn’t just get to see the whales — we could hear them singing.


Mating Olive Ridley turtles — a process that can take a month.


Guide’s translation: “The orange ones are venomous.”


The famous Thermales (hot springs), near Nuqui.


Eight-thousand millimetres of rain keeps everything lush and green.


…So much to write about (El Cantil, Nuqui)!

Looking for more of Colombia? Check out my Colombia Travel Video.

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About the author: David Webb is a Vancouver, BC-based travel writer, photographer and magazine editor.

7 comments… add one
  • David Webb Nov 1, 2013 Link

    Thanks Javier! Hope all is well with you.

  • Javier Ladino Oct 29, 2013 Link

    We’re so glad you could enjoy all that Colombia has to offer in tourism to the world, we hope you visit us and discover more places full of magic realism. Very good work and see you soon.

  • Carlene Lowe Oct 14, 2013 Link

    This is indeed undiscovered travel destination! Literally you’re being to nature. Very diverse ecosystem and the place so beautiful as well. I would love to visit this place in Colombia.

  • David Webb Sep 23, 2013 Link

    Sure – I stayed at El Almejal, El Cantil and the ecolodge at Utria NP – access the park via boat from El Valle or Nuqui, about 45 mins by boat from El Valle. As far as getting within the park, there are marked trails and guides for hire. You can hike into Utria from El Valle as well, along the beach or in the jungle, in fact, you can actually hike from El Valle to the eco-lodge at the park – it’s about a nine-km hike from the town. Check out Proexport Colombia’s website to get some more info, or keep posted here, as I’ll put up some more info soon!

  • Mike Sep 22, 2013 Link

    Great post- also saw the video of the whales singing, which was amazing. I’m planning a trip to this area in 2014 and am wondering if you’d be willing to share some more details about your trip. Specifically I’d like to know what other eco lodges you stayed at aside from El Cantil, and how you managed the trip to PN Utria.


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