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Taganga - gateway to Tayrona National Park

The weather in Taganga was always better than in Tayrona National Park where the high mountains created frequent cloud cover; Taganga was always much windier though

The weather in Taganga was always better than in Tayrona National Park where the high mountains created frequent cloud cover; Taganga was always much windier though

There is only 1 ATM in Taganga and we were told it often runs out of money; problematic since many places take only cash

There is only 1 ATM in Taganga and we were told it often runs out of money; problematic since many places take only cash

Playa Grande was a nicer beach than Taganga but that isn't saying much; boats bring in hundreds of tourists each day

Playa Grande was a nicer beach than Taganga but that isn't saying much; boats bring in hundreds of tourists each day

Taganga was a 4 hour van ride east of Cartagena and a 10 minute taxi ride from the large city of Santa Marta

Taganga was a 4 hour van ride east of Cartagena and a 10 minute taxi ride from the large city of Santa Marta

The isolated beach at Playa Grande is primarily reached by boat but can also be approached as we did on a steep trail from Taganga

The isolated beach at Playa Grande is primarily reached by boat but can also be approached as we did on a steep trail from Taganga

We enjoyed a nice sunset on Playa Grande; Taganga is one of the oldest remaining settlements in Colombia having been founded in 1525

We enjoyed a nice sunset on Playa Grande; Taganga is one of the oldest remaining settlements in Colombia having been founded in 1525

Standing in front of our hotel looking up the dirt street; looking the other direction you'd see the beach a block away; in the afternoons and evenings the wind just roared down the street from the hills

Standing in front of our hotel looking up the dirt street; looking the other direction you'd see the beach a block away; in the afternoons and evenings the wind just roared down the street from the hills

As recently as 1998 Taganga had only one hotel; fishing is main industry with fishermen returning in late afternoon and displaying/selling their catch off card tables by their boats

As recently as 1998 Taganga had only one hotel; fishing is main industry with fishermen returning in late afternoon and displaying/selling their catch off card tables by their boats

Taganga is the gateway to Tayrona National Park, the most popular in Colombia; drought is a persistent problem with water often having to be trucked in

Taganga is the gateway to Tayrona National Park, the most popular in Colombia; drought is a persistent problem with water often having to be trucked in

We were warned not to take money, phones, cameras or anything of value on our walk over the hill to Playa Grande beach; we did encounter police at a checkpoint on trail; I think they wanted money but we played dumb and had no issue

We were warned not to take money, phones, cameras or anything of value on our walk over the hill to Playa Grande beach; we did encounter police at a checkpoint on trail; I think they wanted money but we played dumb and had no issue

The main church in Taganga is tiny; the small fishing village has a population of 5000 and is very poor with only a couple of badly paved streets

The main church in Taganga is tiny; the small fishing village has a population of 5000 and is very poor with only a couple of badly paved streets

Taganga was photogenic from the sea; you can't see the many stray dogs, dirt streets, litter or poverty

Taganga was photogenic from the sea; you can't see the many stray dogs, dirt streets, litter or poverty

Taganga is a very popular place to get certified to scuba dive due to the low costs here; there are lots of dive centers but go with a larger one with English speaking staff and new equipment

Taganga is a very popular place to get certified to scuba dive due to the low costs here; there are lots of dive centers but go with a larger one with English speaking staff and new equipment

Behind Taganga are the highest mountains (18700 ft) in the world closest to the sea (26 miles); Taganga is on a fault between the South American and Caribbean tectonic plates

Behind Taganga are the highest mountains (18700 ft) in the world closest to the sea (26 miles); Taganga is on a fault between the South American and Caribbean tectonic plates

Fishermen selling their catch by the water; stray dog doing what stray dogs do and right on the beach

Fishermen selling their catch by the water; stray dog doing what stray dogs do and right on the beach

The sunsets from Taganga and Tayrona National Park were magnificent; my photos aren't close to how spectacular they really were

The sunsets from Taganga and Tayrona National Park were magnificent; my photos aren't close to how spectacular they really were

I went twice by boat (Lee once) to Tayrona National Park; the second time was horrendous with the trip resembling riding a mechanical bull for 90 minutes while firemen hose you down

I went twice by boat (Lee once) to Tayrona National Park; the second time was horrendous with the trip resembling riding a mechanical bull for 90 minutes while firemen hose you down

The local Colombian people we met were always polite and helpful; several times we were going the wrong way when locals proactively corrected us

The local Colombian people we met were always polite and helpful; several times we were going the wrong way when locals proactively corrected us

Noisy green parakeets would descend on Taganga every evening; the village was quite sleepy during the day but was lively at night

Noisy green parakeets would descend on Taganga every evening; the village was quite sleepy during the day but was lively at night

Late every afternoon the local fishermen would showcase their daily catch and sell directly; there is no large grocery store in town so fish is a large part of their diet

Late every afternoon the local fishermen would showcase their daily catch and sell directly; there is no large grocery store in town so fish is a large part of their diet

Boarding the boat for Tayrona; just got drenched the entire way; the first 5 minutes people were laughing but for the next hour everyone was quiet and miserable

Boarding the boat for Tayrona; just got drenched the entire way; the first 5 minutes people were laughing but for the next hour everyone was quiet and miserable

The locals we spoke to are not fans of Trump; wonder if this boat is a political statement since Hillary is hardly a Colombian name

The locals we spoke to are not fans of Trump; wonder if this boat is a political statement since Hillary is hardly a Colombian name

Posted by VagabondCowboy 07:28

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I don’t see the 18,700 ft mountains you speak of.

by mrbrooker

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