A surreal world hidden high up in the cloudy mountains of Colombia, the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta is the world’s highest coastal mountain formation and home to a truly unique ecosystem.

Nestled in the north of Colombia, the snow-capped range rises up from the golden sands of the Caribbean coast. Its green rainforests and magical mists cover a land filled with a fascinating mix of flora and fauna. Within its borders you will find a myriad of species that crawl along the tree trunks, shuffle beneath the undergrowth and stalk the various riverbanks.

Hiking and walking trails are thus unmissable, providing lush windows into some of nature’s greatest gifts. Illuminated by shafts of light that stream through the thick canopies, creatures such as the jaguar and cougar stalk their prey. The shy and threatened tapir is a curious oddity while otters play in the creeks to the soundtrack of endangered harlequin frogs and Santa Marta parakeets.

Hidden among the dense flora of the Sierra Nevada is The Lost City, known in Spanish as Ciudad Perdida. Built around AD 700-800, it was the birthplace of the Tayrona people and was once home to thousands of potters and farmers who lived there until the Spanish took control in the 16th century. The site lay abandoned until the mid 1970s, when looters rediscovered it under a mass of tangled toots.

What to do

  • Visit the Ciudad Perdida - the Lost City. Buried deep in the mountains is this city built by the Tayrona civilisation
  • Hike through the lush forests

Accommodation in Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta

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