Discover boutique hotels in Isla Barú, Colombia

Separated from the mainland by the Canal del Dique, idyllic Isla Barú is just an hour’s drive from bustling Cartagena, but has more in common with a far-flung Caribbean isle. When the city gets hot and hectic, urbanites like to decamp to the island’s white-sand beaches and mangrove-swathed shores, which are a hotbed of aquatic and avian activity. Alongside watersports and barbeques on the beach, the biggest attraction is the Corales del Rosario National Park, a protected series of reefs home to a multitude of brightly coloured sea life.

When to go

Peak season is from November to April, with the biggest crowds arriving in December and January. Go early or wait until February or March, when the weather’s still good but there’s less competition for spaces on the beach.

Getting there

  • Planes

    Unless you’re already in Colombia, the best place to touch down will by the capital, Bogotá, which can be reached directly from London Heathrow and most of the major US hubs. Once there, hop on a service to Cartagena’s Rafael Núñez International Airport, a flight of around 90 minutes. The final leg is best done by car, and usually takes under an hour.
  • Automobiles

    It’s perfectly possible to get around without a car, and taxis are plentiful. Be sure to agree on a fare before you get in, otherwise you may find there’s a surprise tourist tax once you arrive at your destination.