Welcome to the Bahia Solano and Nuqui region of Colombia — a relatively undiscovered outdoor-activity utopia on the country’s Pacific Coast. And while you’re here, check out these three must-do adventures:
In This Colombia Article You Will Discover:
- How to Hear Humpbacks
- Therapeutic Hot Springs
- Turtle Conservation & Stewardship Efforts
I was fortunate to spend a week on Colombia’s Pacific Coast. Located within Choco Department, the Bahia Solano and Nuqui region are off-the-beaten-path adventure destinations that have yet to be fully discovered by the world. It’s a land of jungle treks, bird watching, calving humpbacks, sea turtles, watersports, cilantro-scented foods and welcoming locals. If you’re looking for some inspiration, here are three amazing adventures on Colombia’s Pacific Coast:
Caguama (The Turtle Sanctuary)
After a three-kilometre hike through muddy, muggy jungle, I was tired, thirsty and sweat-soaked. The promise of fresh coconut water kept me going for the final push, but when I arrived at Caguama, located in Utria National Park, I forgot all about my lethargy. A tub of newly hatched olive ridley turtles awaited; my group and I had the honour of releasing these hatchlings to the open Pacific, where they will go on to live for decades. Such wonders are all in a day’s work at Caguama, a locally run turtle sanctuary that aims to conserve and protect the region’s endangered sea turtles.
Whale Watching in Utria National Park
Born and raised on British Columbia’s Pacific Coast, to me, humpback whales are somewhat old-hat. I’ve seen them close-up from a small fishing boat in the Haida Gwaii. I’ve seen them from the ferry ride to and from Vancouver Island. Once, a whale swam into downtown Vancouver’s False Creek. But I’d never heard a humpback before. On my final full day in Bahia Solano, we drifted offshore of Utria National Park in an 18-foot boat while listening to whale-song, loud and omnipresent, emanate from below the water. Goosebumps. And that was following a half-dozen whale sightings, which, despite the blasé way I started this paragraph, are always spectacular. Old-hat or not. (Bonus: listen for yourself HERE.)
Longtime readers of this blog already know this: hot springs are my favourite natural phenomenon. I can soak in them for hours. I seek them out the world-round — they revitalize me in mind and body. Thermales, located an hour’s beach-hike south of El Cantil eco-lodge, wasn’t the hottest spring I’ve ever soaked in, but surrounded by milpesos palms and cohiba trees — both of which harboured Choco toucans and endemic baudo oropendola birds — it had a magical quality that so typified the region. We soaked in the bubbling spring, occasionally diving for soft pumice rocks, for more than two hours as a gentle jungle mist fell from the sky.
Watch the Video Here: