Every city should have its own version of what Santa Marta has. Santa Marta is a big city located at the northern tip of the Colombian coast and like any big city, it can be quite hectic but what Santa Marta does have, is Taganga. If the city life every becomes too much, a short 10 minute car, taxi or bus ride over the green ridge and down into the small cove town of Taganga will help you forget.
Taganga, Colombia, with Santa Marta in the distance
We hopped in one of the local busses and a few cents later, you reach the top of the climb over the ridge that separates Santa Marta and Taganga and as you approach the first corner on the way down, the view becomes incredible. White sand, beach goers, completely still boats sitting on water that seems to not even create a ripple, let alone a wave. We checked into a great hostel up from the gravel soccer field called La Casa de Felipe. A bit of a walk considering the tiny size of Taganga, but nice amount of peace and quiet and being away from many buildings, a terrific breeze.
Entrance to Casa Felipe, Taganga, where the dog incident happened
As we grabbed some food and were walking back to the hostel, we noticed a couple of the stray dogs running around and playing. We also noticed a gentleman walking with some groceries. I didn't think much of it and looked away, but Taylor having a real sense for the hilarity in someones misfortune poked me and I turned my head in perfect timing. The 2 dogs were running and playing with each other and started into a full sprint right towards the guy, who lifted his leg to take another normal step, right as the dogs tumbled into his planting leg. They took out his leg side ways as he tried to plant it into the ground, and he, and his groceries went tumbling. As the dogs ran off and he tried to jump up in more embarrassment than pain, we ran to see if he was alright, and as he picked up his bags, a tiny hole had been punctured in his bottle of soda that create a light spray of sugar water everywhere. Trying to brush off the pain and embarrassment, the guy pleaded that he was fine and only a few meters from home, smiled and limped off. Both trying to be upstanding, respectful people, we allowed him to get a solid distance of about 30 meters before we turned the opposite way and burst out laughing.
There are a lot of beautiful beaches in Colombia. Taganga, Colombia has a beautiful beach that, because of the land on either side of the cove, has water that drops away quite quickly, but has zero pull, rip tide or even waves. The sand itself is a little more coarse than sand in places like Palomino or Cartagena.
Travellers Tip: Be prepared for the "mariposa's del mar" or the butterflies of the sea, which are little purple or dark blue squid like things that might startle you. Dont worry, they're harmless. The road next to the soccer field, leading down to the beach from Casa Felipe is lined with good restaurants, local food, sandwich joints and breakfast places that will cost less than what is located right around the beach, however everything in Taganga is relatively well priced.
Taylor and our Chile amigas in Taganga, Colombia
That night, after a long relaxing day in the shade, and in the water, at the beach, we met up with some of our Chilean friends and headed to a hotel bar called Mirador. Located near the entrance to Taganga, and up a large staircase, the Miarador Discoteca provides a cool atmosphere and a great lit up view of Taganga, Colombia.
There is a not a massive amount of things to do in Taganga, Colombia, and that is fine, because like I said before, its an escape. Its like going back in time, with the busy city of Santa Marta just over the ridge, Taganga is a great place to relax and recharge the batteries. There is a lot of diving and dive shops in Taganga, however, not having our open water tickets and not really being that interested in diving, we elected not to do a discover dive, soaked up one final day in Taganga, played some footy, did a little hike to a view point, and said "thats a wrap Taganga" and headed out.