Rosario Islands: The best beach Close to Cartagena for a day trip in 2023.

Cartagena de Indias, nestled on Colombia’s stunning coast, is a cultural jewel and a must-visit for travelers. The city of Cartagena offers a plethora of attractions, but the Rosario Islands stand out as one of the best day trip destinations. Comprising 28 beautiful islands, the Rosario Islands are part of the Corales del Rosario National Park, one of Colombia’s treasured national parks. If you’re planning a trip to Cartagena, consider taking a day trip to the Rosario Islands.

Many travelers opt for a private tour, which allows for island hopping among different islands, including the renowned Barú Island. These islands offer a range of experiences, from luxury resorts to pristine beaches that rank among the best near Cartagena. Located just 45 minutes from Cartagena by speed boat, the Rosario Islands are easily accessible for those wanting to take a boat trip from Cartagena. 

The main island in the Rosario Islands, also the largest, is a hub of activities, with catamaran tours like the Bona Vida Catamaran being a popular choice. If you have at least a day to spare in your itinerary, spend the day exploring the islands’ natural beauty and marine wonders. In short, your trip to Cartagena wouldn’t be complete without experiencing the charm of the Rosario Islands, making them a top recommendation for anyone visiting Cartagena.

What are the Rosario Islands?

Exploring the beauty of the Rosario Islands

The Rosario Islands, also known as Islas del Rosario, are a group of tropical islands located just off the coast of Cartagena. With their crystal clear waters, vibrant coral reefs, and stunning white sand beaches, these islands are a paradise for beach lovers and nature enthusiasts. The marine biodiversity surrounding the islands is truly remarkable, making it a great destination for snorkeling and diving.

How to get to the Rosario Islands from Cartagena

Getting to the Rosario Islands from Cartagena is relatively easy. You can take a boat trip from Cartagena’s port, which will transport you to the islands in about an hour. There are also private tour options available for those who prefer a more personalized experience. Once you arrive at the islands, you’ll be greeted by breathtaking natural beauty and a sense of serenity that can’t be found anywhere else.

Is it possible to visit the Rosario Islands on a day trip?

Yes, it is definitely possible to visit the Rosario Islands on a day trip from Cartagena. Many tour operators offer day trips to the islands, allowing you to explore their beauty and return to Cartagena by the end of the day. This makes it convenient for travelers who are short on time but still want to experience the magic of the Rosario Islands.

Why should you take a day trip to the Rosario Islands?

Enjoying the crystal clear waters

One of the main reasons to take a day trip to the Rosario Islands is to enjoy the crystal clear waters that surround them. The pristine blue waters are perfect for swimming, snorkeling, and simply relaxing. You can take a refreshing dip in the sea or lounge on the soft sandy beaches, soaking up the sun while listening to the gentle sound of the waves.

Snorkeling adventures in the Rosario Islands

If you’re a snorkeling enthusiast, the Rosario Islands offer some of the best underwater experiences in the region. With their vibrant coral reefs and abundance of marine life, you can explore a whole new world beneath the surface. Swim alongside colorful tropical fish, encounter majestic sea turtles, and marvel at the beauty of the coral gardens that thrive in these waters.

Experiencing the stunning beaches

The Rosario Islands are home to some of the most stunning beaches in Colombia. From secluded coves to wide stretches of golden sand, each beach has its own unique charm. Whether you’re looking for a peaceful spot to unwind or a lively beach to socialize with fellow travelers, there’s a beach in the Rosario Islands that will cater to your preferences.

Indulging in a day pass at a beach club

If you’re looking for a more luxurious experience, consider purchasing a day pass to one of the beach clubs in the Rosario Islands. These exclusive beach clubs offer a range of amenities, including private beach access, infinity pools, loungers, and delicious meals and drinks. It’s the perfect option for those seeking a bit of pampering and relaxation during their day trip to the islands.

Planning your day trip to the Rosario Islands

Choosing the best Rosario Islands tour

When planning your day trip to the Rosario Islands, it’s important to choose the best tour option that suits your needs. There are various tour operators in Cartagena that offer different packages, so take the time to research and read reviews to ensure you select a reputable company. Look for tours that include transportation, island hopping, snorkeling equipment, and lunch to make the most of your experience.

Tour option 1: Islabela

Located in the majestic Rosario Islands, Islabela invites you to discover its private beach of unparalleled beauty, highlighted by its soft white sand and crystal-clear blue waters. This gem in the heart of the Rosario Islands offers meticulously designed infrastructure that not only enhances the natural beauty of the archipelago but also provides the ideal environment for relaxation and entertainment.

Escape the daily hustle and immerse yourself in an oasis where nature blends with modern comforts. If you are looking for a haven in the Rosario Islands where serenity meets a vibrant and joyful atmosphere, Islabela presents itself as your perfect destination. Experience the ideal fusion of nature and comfort in a place that is, without a doubt, one of the most treasured treasures of the Rosario Islands.

Islabela: Book your day trip to the Rosario Islands here.

Tour option 2: Luxury Beach

Luxury, located in the Rosario Islands, is a place specially designed for our visitors to enjoy a spectacular beach, delicious cocktails and beautiful views.

It has a private beach with white sand and crystal clear waters, and a unique infrastructure that makes it ideal to relax, have fun and disconnect from the routine. Luxury is the ideal destination for those who want to immerse themselves in splendid nature, a lively and vibrant atmosphere that will enchant them.

Luxury: Book your day trip to the Rosario Islands here.

Tour option 3: Bonavida Catamaran

From Cartagena de Indias, we sail to the Rosario Islands Natural National Park. We depart from La Bodeguita pier, facing the walled city, taking in the spectacular view of the modern part of the city. We navigate between Tierra Bomba Island and the industrial area, heading out to the open sea by the San Fernando de Bocachica fort.

Aboard the BONA VIDA catamaran, you can enjoy both sail and motor navigation for approximately an hour and fifteen minutes to our destination. The catamaran boasts very comfortable seating with pleasant cushions, offering spots both in the shade and in the sun.

We offer an onboard bar service with a wide variety of drinks throughout the excursion (non-alcoholic beverages are included in the price). As we sail, you’ll discover a delightful sensation as the catamaran silently glides over the water. We sail up to Isla Grande, in the Rosario Islands, and make a stop next to a beautiful coral barrier, where you can swim enjoying our fun inflatables, and snorkel if you wish, marveling at the fascinating underwater life with its colorful tropical fish and various types of coral.

Onboard, the crew prepares a delicious seafood or vegetarian rice dish for you to enjoy at our second stop, an idyllic cove with turquoise waters, facing a white sandy beach.

Next, we sail towards the Rosario Islands, making two stops – the first in front of Isla Grande and the second at Punta Gigante. Finally, we enter the Bay of Cartagena.

Catamaran: Book your day trip to the Rosario Islands here.

Tour option 4: 5 Islas Plan

This tour offers you a unique experience by allowing you to visit 5 islands on a sport boat from Cartagena. With this plan, you’ll have the opportunity to enjoy the most comprehensive tour of the city, exploring the beautiful beaches of Barú and the Rosario Islands. You can dive into crystal-clear waters, walk on white sands, and admire the impressive coral reefs. This experience will be unforgettable, providing you with the chance to live memorable moments in touch with nature.

You will visit the following places:

  • Isla Bocachica.
  • Isla Grande.
  • Isla Privada Cocotera or Encantada Beach
  • Isla Cholón.
  • Isla Baru (Mambo Beach).

5 Islas Plan: Book your day trip to the Rosario Islands here.

Tips for a memorable day trip to the Rosario Islands

Booking your Rosario Islands tour in advance

To ensure availability and secure your spot on a day trip to the Rosario Islands, it’s recommended to book your tour in advance. Especially during peak travel seasons, tours can fill up quickly, and you don’t want to miss out on this incredible experience. Check with different tour operators, compare prices, and read reviews to find the best option for you.

Preparing for a boat ride to the islands

It’s important to be prepared for the boat ride to the Rosario Islands. While the journey is relatively short, it can be choppy at times, so it’s advisable to take motion sickness medication if you’re prone to seasickness. Bring a light jacket or sweater, as the sea breeze can be cool, and don’t forget to pack any necessary medications or personal items you may need during the day.

What to pack for your day trip to the Rosario Islands

When preparing for your day trip to the Rosario Islands, there are a few essential items you should pack. These include sunscreen, a hat, sunglasses, a swimsuit, a towel, a change of clothes, snorkeling equipment if you have your own, and a waterproof bag to protect your belongings. It’s also a good idea to bring some cash for any potential purchases or additional activities that may be available on the islands.

Discovering the vibrant marine life while snorkeling

Don’t forget to bring your snorkeling gear or rent it from the tour operator. Snorkeling is one of the highlights of a day trip to the Rosario Islands, as you’ll have the opportunity to discover the vibrant marine life that calls these waters home. From colorful fish to stunning coral formations, there’s a whole underwater world waiting to be explored.

Any questions? Talk to Luis