Surrounded on three sides by dense jungle, Capurganá is the last town of any reasonable size on the Colombian Caribbean coast before the border with Panama. A sleepy little place with a laid-back atmosphere, it is popular with Colombians, but is only just starting to put in an appearance on the Gringo trail; mainly because it is the last place on the coast with a DAS office where you can get stamped out of Colombia.
If you are passing through, Capurganá is a great place to spend a few days relaxing and savouring one of the few places left with no cars (there are no roads to Capurganá, so the only form of land-based transport there are horses or bicycles). It has a couple of small beaches (although with strong currents, so take care when swimming), and is a great place for snorkelling.
There are numerous hotels and restaurants scattered throughout the place, so there are plenty of options for the budget traveller (who are likely to arrive on the bone-shaking launches from Puerto Obaldia or Turbo), as well as more up-market choices for those who can afford to fly in.
Capurganá has an airstrip and tiny airport, from which a couple of companies provide regular and charter flights from Medellín:
- ADA: has flights from Medellín at around 290,000 COP. They can be contacted in Medellin +574 444 4232 or Capurganá 682 8817/682 8804
- Searca : provide passenger and cargo flights: +574 444 4232
There are no roads leading to Capurganá, hence the feeling of being in an island.
- Dive and Green. A place providing diving services. For more information see the website . 2 dives : 180,000 COP.
- La Miel (Hire boat for 20,000 COP per person round-trip). Located on the border of Colombia and Panama, La Miel is one of the most beautiful beaches in the world. Though technically in Panama, there is no need to bring your passport, and the bars accept COP and USD.
- alberto (delso), posada del gecko (capurgana), ☎ +57 3142217154. Gecko Cafe Bar 13000.
- Posada del Gecko (calle de la policia), ☎ +57 3142217154. Restaurante Bar Posada Del Gecko .....pizza e comida Italian y cocktails
- Hotel el Uvito (At the start of the main street, right next to the docks). From 25,000 COP (30,000 with breakfast).
- Hotel Don Blas (On the right of the main street as you leave the docks).
- Los Delphines (Walk up the main street from the docks, take the first right and carry on walking about 100m). Owner Hannibal will most likely be at the dock waiting for new arrivants. A cheap, clean and friendly place that also serves good food. Rooms with bath from 15,000 COP..
- Hostal Capurganá (On the left on main street leading from the docks).
- Hospedaje/Camping Nelly (off dock 50 meters to the right, just before crossing small bridge to beach). Nice place owned by Nelly, a local resident for years. Camping available for 7,000 COP, rooms starting at 15,000 COP. Located literally steps from the beach. Kitchen available, but limited use of burners.
- Tacarcuna Lodge (downtown, just next to the soccer field, 2 blocks away from the beach), ☎ +57 4 361 78 09. 150.000 COP per night.
- Cabaña Darius (About 10 minutes away from town, Hawaiian owner Joey will pick you up from the dock with his horse and cart), ☎ +57 3146468974. Beautiful retreat just outside of town, with dorms and private rooms. Clean, comfortable beds in new wooden cabins. Dorms from 15000, Private from 30000. Swimming pool and kitchen.
Several places provide internet services.
- Capurganá Tours on the main street provide internet for 3,000 COP per hour.
- A public internet service for 3,000 COP is also provided at an office in the high school, although the connection is painfully slow.
- Angel National Park
There are launches to Turbo leaving everymorning (55,000 COP). There is an office selling tickets on the sea front where you can reserve your ticket the day before. Launches to Puerto Obaldia depart at 7AM and 1PM daily (25,000 COP) and private boats can be hired (100,000 COP). If the office is closed, ask around to find Marcelino, almost everyone will be able to point you to the right person. Days when the plane is coming to Puerto Obaldia, the boat leaves early enough so that you can make the connection with the plane on the same day, you don t need to travel a day before and spend a night there as it s not very tourist orientated.
There are boats to Sapzurro every day (7,000 COP).
It is also possible to arrange launches to La Miel, further along the Colombian coast.
It is possible to walk over the mountain to the town of Sapzurro on the border with Panamá, with an almost perfect circular bay. From there you can continue your hike over the border to the La Miel, Panama. A small coastal town with white sandy beaches.