Playa Blanca is located in Baru Island, which is actually not an island but a peninsula, and what to say about it more than it’s a little paradise less than 2 hours away from Cartagena.
If we were going to the Caribbean sea, we sure as hell wanted to live the dream advertised in all tourist agencies showing crystal clear waters and beautiful long beaches, but without having to deal with a million tourists and hotels all around. The answer was Playa Blanca.
The place is exactly that, a long long beach, and crystal clear waters that go from the lightest blue to beautiful turquoise to dark blue deep inside. All along the beach you can find many places where wooden cabins are offered (50,000 pesos), together with hammocks (10,000 per person) or camping spots (10,000 per tent). The key here is not to be lazy and walk quite some along the beach, not staying at the beginning, as there is where most of the people stay and it gets pretty crowded, even now in May, which is the lowest season of the year. This you can easily feel it when walking along the beach. If the first places are pretty packed with people, the more you walk, the less people you find. Finally we stayed at a place called El Parche de Alex, where we were the only guests, and it seemed we had a beach almost just for us. Even though our idea was to camp there, after seeing the place, we let ourselves go and took a cabin for the first 2 nights, it looked just to good. A cabin on the first floor with views to the sea? Yes please, i’ll take two of those. Now that we bargain every single thing, we are kind of in a mood where if a little sick kid would offer us a lollipop for 50 cents, i’d pay no more than 30, we got the cabin for 40,000 pesos, plus 10 thousand more for using the kitchen, which it was supposed to be 5, but the last day the owner said it would be actually 10. If you go there, remember to agree on the price of everything, meaning everything everything upfront.
Going to sleep with the sound of the Caribbean is a pretty sweet deal, even if we freaked out a bit the moment the owner handed me 2 empty beer cans to put under the wooden ladder that we use to climb up to the cabin, so that in case someone was to climb upstairs during the night i could hear him/her coming. Fantastic! Now i can go to sleep really easy and enjoy the time here and for sure i won’t even think about what you just told me during the night! Yep, what can i say, it wasn’t 10 hours sleeping like a baby precisely. A damn rat, big as a freaking dog, climbed up the stairs. The beers did their job and i could hear them crunch and start panicking. Fortunately, let’s call it that way, the rat kept climbing to the ceiling and i could see its shadow moving in the ceiling. So when Kasia woke up because of my going a bit nuts moment, i could comfort her by telling her to go back to sleep, to not worry, that it wasn’t a thief, it was just a huge rat. Sweet dreams honey. But well, it all went away when we woke up, looked at our feet and saw at the background the amazing view we had from the bed.
The sea at 6 in the morning is a huge swimming pool, i loved going swimming along the beach with the first rays of light, that soon enough would start heating as strong as in Cartagena. All cabins start getting ready for the day at 7 am and by the time the clock hits 8 o’clock it’s all ready good to go. The jet skis start running asking every single person to go for a ride, the sellers start walking up and down the beach looking for customers and the visitors sit down to enjoy the breakfast next to the water.
Doing nothing is every thing in Playa Blanca. As a local told me, here you just come to watch, see and feel, and you can do all that while seated. The Caribbean waters are amazing, the temperature is cool enough to refresh you, but warm enough to allow you to be inside for hours. I normally get cold very fast, and here i would get out just cause my skin would start looking a lot like a raisin, and not a good, nice raisin, but kind of a messed up one. Going for a swim, taking some sun bath, looking around and let a smile pop up without even trying, breathe the fresh air, take a nap listening to the foam of the sea, walking up and down the beach, snorkeling, kayaking, these are the pleasures one gets in Playa Blanca, and they all feel so good.
Another amazing perk of this beautiful spot are the sunsets. They are just astonishing:
And when the sun goes down, which happens really really early, at 6 pm the sun is gone, and by 7 pm, it’s all completely dark already. But then a different light shines. Playa Blanca is a great spot for stargazing. The little light from the cabins invites you to look up at the sky and enjoy the little shiny dots that shine up there, really really nice.
On our first day in Playa Blanca we met the Scottish couple that was renting the room next to ours in the apartment in Cartagena. We shared a great dinner with Jack and Lucy and spent a daily budget on beers, but it sure was worth it. The day was simply a perfect day.
The owner of a restaurant next to our place, Angelo, a great guy that build a huge cabin in a week, told me about many Europeans that came to Playa Blanca to stay for a few days, and then ended up staying months. Well, i do understand these folks, cause who wouldn’t want to stay always a bit longer in paradise?