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Island retreat

Beachs in Colombia

The following day, deciding that Cartagena has got the better of me and my liver, I board one of the plentiful vessels heading to the nearby Islas del Rosario. Just 45 minutes away via a bumpy speed boat ride, this dreamy, protected marine park of 27 coral-fringed islands offers the chance to scuba dive, hike, horse ride, snorkel, kite board or simply daydream the hours away on sands so platinum they’d make Robinson Crusoe swoon.

Touching down on Baru in Playa Blanca, I walk past sleepy cabanas, bamboo-thatched beach huts and a whole section devoted to hammocks, which you can rent for 7000 Colombian pesos (£2.50) to enjoy a night of slumbering under the stars. I’m psyched for an afternoon of nothingness, until I spy one of several kiteboarding instructors flying over the waves and decide to give it a try.

My instructor works for Colombia Kite, a well-respected company based in Cartagena that offers bespoke kite-surfing tours to take advantage of the coastal Caribbean winds. Strapping my feet on to the board, I’m unsure whether my upper body can handle the gusts here – between January and April, the winds get surprisingly fierce. This is why the region is a hotspot for the sport. That and the fact it’s affordable to learn (approximately £17 per lesson).


Colombia's Cartagena on the Caribbean coast offers a life more colourful
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