SAN ANDRES Travel Guide

Explore the Caribbean pearl of Colombia – San Andres!

Table of content


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General information

Located in the Caribbean Sea, San Andres is a Colombian island known for its crystal clear waters, white sand beaches and beautiful landscapes. This island has everything to please travelers in search of sun, sea and relaxation.


San Andres is populated by descendants of African slaves, Spanish settlers and Britons, making it a cosmopolitan destination. The inhabitants, known as Raizales, have their own language and culture, as well as a strong attachment to their island.


San Andres enjoys a tropical climate all year round, with average temperatures of 27°C. The rainy season is from May to November, but this does not discourage visitors who can enjoy the beach even during tropical downpours.


The official currency is the Colombian peso (COP).


The inhabitants of San Andres speak a creole language called “raizal” as well as Spanish.

A bit of history

The history of San Andres dates back to pre-Columbian times, when the island was inhabited by indigenous peoples of the Zenú culture. Later, in 1629, the British established a colony on the island, but were expelled by the Spanish in 1641. During the colonial period, San Andres was used as a transit point for the African slave trade. In the early 19th century, the island became a British colony and saw significant immigration of Afro-Caribbean populations and British settlers.

In the 20th century, San Andres experienced a period of economic development thanks to the exploitation of its fertile land for the production of coconuts, pineapples and cotton. In the 1950s, the Colombian government began to invest in tourism on the island, creating tourist infrastructure to attract visitors.

However, the 1980s were marked by political and social conflict on the island, with the rise of drug trafficking and gang-related violence. Since then, the Colombian government has put in place measures to strengthen security on the island and encourage sustainable economic development.

Today, San Andres is a popular tourist destination for its white sand beaches, crystal clear waters and unique Caribbean culture. Visitors can learn about the island's history and culture through its museums, historical sites and local traditions.

San Andrés

What to visit in San Andres

San Andres is a beautiful island located in the Colombian Caribbean. It offers a multitude of things to see and discover. Here is a list of 4 things not to miss during your visit.

San Luis beach

The mangrove park

Morgan's Cave

The Hoyo Soplador

When to visit San Andres

The ideal time to visit San Andres is from December to April, during the dry season, when the weather is hot and dry, with maximum sunshine.

What to do around San Andres

San Andres is an incredible tourist destination that offers so much more than beautiful beaches. If you are looking for activities to do around the island, here are 4 ideas not to be missed.





Our selection of accommodation in San Andres


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Our selection of Restaurant in San Andres

San Andres is a paradise for lovers of seafood and Caribbean cuisine. Here is a list of 4 famous restaurants on the island where you can taste delicious local dishes


aqua beach club

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Events not to be missed in San Andres

San Andres is a festive island that offers many cultural and musical events throughout the year. San Andres events offer a unique opportunity to experience local culture and traditions. Here are two events not to be missed

san andres carnival

The Carnival of San Andres

The Carnival of San Andres is one of the most important events on the island. Celebrated every November, the Carnival is a mixture of African, Native American and European traditions. For two days, the streets of the island fill with costumed dancers, musicians and spectators. Music is an essential element of Carnival, with Caribbean rhythms such as salsa, reggae and calypso. Colorful costumes and eccentric masks add a touch of whimsy to the event. 

Raizal san andres

Raizal Culture Festival

The Raizal Culture Festival is an annual event that celebrates the unique culture of the indigenous inhabitants of San Andres. Celebrated every year in August, the festival is a tribute to the African, Native American and European traditions of the Raizals. For several days, the streets of the island come alive with parades of traditional costumes, folk dances, music and local gastronomy. Visitors have the chance to discover the sacred rituals of the Raizals and participate in workshops on local culture and traditions. 

Transportation in San Andres


Taxis are the most common way to get around San Andres. They are easily accessible and can be found on any street corner. Fares are affordable and it is usually possible to negotiate prices with drivers. Taxis are ideal for short trips or for people who want to get around comfortably.


The bus is an economical and convenient form of transportation in San Andres. There are several bus lines that run around the island, with regular stops at points of tourist interest. Buses are a good option for people who want to explore the island at their own pace.


Cart or scooter rental is a good option for travelers who want to explore the island independently. Rental agencies are easily accessible and offer a wide range of vehicles to meet the needs of travelers. Rates vary according to the type of vehicle and the duration of the rental.


Boat transportation is also available in San Andres for travel between neighboring islands or for sea excursions. Ferries are available to travel to Providencia, another island in the San Andres department, as well as for excursions from observation of dolphins, manta rays and coral reefs. Fares vary depending on destination and length of visit. 

The cost of living in San Andres

Average Salary in Morocco.
Affordable cost of living 35%

The cost of living in San Andres is generally cheaper than in major cities in Colombia.


The cost of accommodation in San Andres varies depending on the time of year and the type of accommodation you are looking for. Luxury hotels offer spacious, well-equipped rooms with spectacular sea views, while hostels and rental apartments are more affordable. The average rates for a hotel room vary between 50 and 150 euros per night, depending on the category of the hotel and the services offered.


The food in San Andres is affordable and delicious. Fresh seafood is a specialty of the region and there are many restaurants offering local and international dishes. Prices vary depending on the category of the restaurant, but in general it is possible to find complete meals from 10 euros per person. For those looking for cheaper options, there are also street food stalls offering snacks at affordable prices.


The cost of transportation in San Andres is relatively affordable. Taxis are readily available throughout the island and fares are regulated by the local government. Fares for taxi rides vary depending on the distance travelled, but in general they are not very high. Car rental rates are also affordable, although driving around the island can be a bit chaotic.


Entertainment in San Andres is plentiful and varied. Activities such as scuba diving, windsurfing, sailing and fishing are popular on the island. There are also many tourist sites, such as Mangrove Regional Park, Morgan Hill Nature Park and Johnny Cay Park. The prices for these activities vary depending on the company and the type of activity. In general, activities can cost between 20 and 100 euros, depending on the duration and complexity of the activity.

Practical information

It is important to be careful with your belongings on the island, due to the presence of occasional thieves. It is also recommended to avoid drinking tap water and prefer bottled water to avoid stomach problems. Visitors should also respect the customs and culture of the islanders, especially when it comes to the protection of the environment and marine animals.


Travel insurance is especially important if you plan to travel to San Andres, Colombia.

Although the city is relatively safe for tourists, it is still possible to encounter unexpected situations such as health issues, lost or stolen luggage, or transportation delays.

In such cases, travel insurance can help you resolve the issues quickly and efficiently, without having to bear high costs or additional complications. 


When traveling to San Andres, it's important to consider several practical aspects to best manage your money. First of all, it is recommended to use ATMs to withdraw cash in Colombian pesos. However, be sure to withdraw cash from safe and well-lit places, such as shopping malls or banks. Avoid changing money on the streets or in unofficial places, as it can be risky and you could get scammed.

It is also important to travel with international credit or debit cards, such as Visa or Mastercard. Check with your bank for transaction fees that may apply to using these cards abroad. It is also recommended to notify your bank of your international travel to avoid any blockage of your card due to suspicious activity.

Finally, it is recommended to use online payment apps such as Revolut to avoid transaction fees and benefit from competitive exchange rates. Make sure to download the app and set it up before your trip to Colombia.