Baru Islas del Rosario, often referred to simply as Barú, is a large island near the city of Cartagena, on the Caribbean coast of Colombia. Barú is part of the Corales del Rosario and San Bernardo National Natural Park, which also includes the Rosario Islands. Barú is famous for its white sand beaches, crystal clear waters and beautiful natural landscapes. The island is a popular destination for tourists visiting Cartagena, as it is easily accessible by boat or road from the city.
To do a rosario islands tour
What is the best time to visit Isla Baru?
- Dry season (December to April): These months are usually considered the best time to visit Isla Barú. During this period, the rains are less frequent and the sun usually shines all day, creating ideal conditions for enjoying the beaches and outdoor activities.
- Rainy season (from May to November): During these months there may be more precipitation, although often in the form of afternoon or night showers. However, the island is still generally very pleasant to visit, with many sunny days and lush nature after the rains.
It is also important to note that the busiest periods tend to be the Christmas and New Year holidays, Holy Week and the Colombian school holidays, when many local tourists visit the island. If you prefer to avoid the crowds, it may be better to visit outside of these periods.
Also read: Rosario islands white beach
How do I get to Isla Barú from Cartagena?
There are several ways to get to Isla Barú from Cartagena, in Colombia:
- By boat: from the Bodeguita Pier, located near the old town of Cartagena, boats leave for Playa Blanca, on Isla Barú. The journey usually takes about an hour. The boats usually leave first thing in the morning and return in the late afternoon. It is advisable to book tickets in advance, especially in high season.
- By car or taxi: Since 2014 it is possible to reach Isla Barú by road, thanks to a bridge that connects the island with the mainland. The journey by car or taxi from Cartagena usually takes around an hour, depending on traffic. It is also possible to take a bus or a “colectivo” (shared taxi) from the Cartagena transport terminal.
- Organized Excursions: Many Cartagena travel agencies offer day trips to Isla Barú, which usually include round-trip transportation, lunch, and sometimes activities like snorkeling. This can be a convenient option if you prefer not to arrange transportation yourself.
What are the main attractions of Isla Barú?
- Playa Blanca: It is one of the most famous beaches in Colombia, known for its fine white sand and crystal clear waters. Playa Blanca is the ideal place to relax, swim, sunbathe and enjoy fresh seafood dishes in one of the many restaurants on the beach.
- Water activities: the crystal clear waters of Barú and its rich marine ecosystem make it an excellent place to practice snorkeling and scuba diving. Kayaking and paddleboarding tours are also popular.
- Corales del Rosario and San Bernardo National Natural Park: Isla Barú is part of this national park, one of the best places in Colombia to observe corals and marine life. There are boat tours to explore other parts of the park.
- Excursions through the mangroves: you can take boat excursions through the mangroves of Barú, which offer the opportunity to see various species of birds and other wildlife.
- Barú Town: Also known as Barú de Indias, this small town offers an insight into local life on the island. Here you will find restaurants, shops and accommodation.
- Bird watching: Barú is home to a wide variety of bird species, making it an excellent place for bird watching, especially early in the morning or late in the afternoon.
When visiting Isla Barú, remember to respect the local environment and the rules of the national park to help preserve this magnificent ecosystem.
Also read: Pablo Escobar Island in Cartagena
What are the best places to go snorkeling or diving in Isla Barú?
Isla Barú, part of the Corales del Rosario y de San Bernardo National Natural Park, is an excellent place to practice snorkeling and scuba diving in Colombia. It offers access to a wide variety of dive sites with coral reefs and abundant marine life.
Playa Blanca: Although this beach is best known for its white sand and crystal clear waters, it also offers good opportunities for snorkeling, especially in areas where coral is close to the beach.
Islas del Rosario: Although not directly part of Isla Barú, the neighboring Islas del Rosario are easily accessible from Barú and are one of the best places in the region for diving. The waters surrounding these islands are famous for their clarity and diversity of marine life, including a wide variety of tropical fish, corals, rays, and the occasional sea turtle.
PADI Dive Shops: There are several dive shops on the island that offer diving and snorkeling excursions, including equipment rental, professional guides, and transportation to the best dive spots around Barú and the Rosario Islands.