Most people aren’t staying in Nuqui township when they come to this part of Colombia’s Pacific Coast. Many of the places people stay are spread out South of Nuqui and require a boat ride to get there. In this post, we are going to look at accommodation options near Nuqui for a range of budgets. We’ll also describe what you can do activity wise in the area and highlight one of our favorite villages, Termales which has accommodation as well as thermal hot springs, very good local food and is an awesome experience of day to day life on the Coast!
Where exactly is Nuqui, Choco, Colombia?
Nuqui Colombia is very remote and not even that well known to Colombians. While in the past it had a history of being unsafe these days it is a burgeoning tourist location sporting some of the most pristine natural environments you can find anywhere in the world.
Nuqui is on the Pacific Coast of Colombia in the Choco Region approximately 160 km West of Medellin as the crow flies. It has one of the only airports on this stretch of coast and as such is a transport hub. The other airport is in Bahia Solano several hours north of Nuqui and close to the Utria Natural Reserve.
Where to stay near Nuqui?
As we mentioned most people do not stay in Nuqui itself. Most of the hotels and lodges are situated about 45 minutes south of Nuqui. The accommodation options in the area are either high end or low end with not much in between. Here is a breakdown of our accommodation services as well as that of some of our friends in nearby hostels – known locally as ‘Posadas’.
Prana Pacifico Eco Lodge and Retreat
Of course, we can provide accommodation for most everyone in one of our properties.
El Morro Terco :
Located on a secluded tropical island, El Morro Terco has 6 rooms (2 triples and 4 doubles) each with an ensuite and use of a shared and furnished terrace. In addition to the rooms we also have
- Fusion dining,
- Yoga and physical therapy,
- as well as being able to organize fishing, whaling and surf trips with our local contacts.
- Price: 250 000 COP p/bed p/night.
Things to do and see nearby:
It’s possible to stay in your hotel and enjoy massage and yoga or you can venture out for activities like fishing and surfing. Check out our guide here on all the activity options in the area including pricing, booking details and the best time to visit to take advantage of them.
There are lower cost Posadas in the nearby village of Termales which are available. By staying in them obviously, you bring money to the village and get a great feel for life in a small fishing village on the Colombian Pacific Coast. We love going into Termales and talking with our friends in the village and interacting with all the local kids.
On the outskirts of the small village of Termales is a small Posada right on the beach which will give you a taste of village life as well as being situated close to the hot pools about a 5 minute walk away. Pura Vida has 2 rooms (one double and one 4 person dorm room) and
- a deck area to relax in or eat,
- has its own power generator to provide light and power in the evening if desired and
- can organize guided trips through the jungle to look at local flora and fauna. 2 hours and 50 000 COP p/person.
- 60 000 COP p/person p/night,
- 70 000 COP p/person p/night with access to the kitchen to cook your own food,
- 120 000 COP p/person p/night inclusive of 3 cooked meals.
If Pura Vida (the hostel we mentioned above) was on the outskirts then Posada Irima is more or less downtown Termales. This description is downright misleading because Termales is only about 500 m long and tens of meters deep. Irimar is still very close to the beach and has a small mini-mart with basic groceries, rooms for rent and can organize activities also.
- Prices: 50 000 COP p/person p/night or $110 000 COP p/person p/night with 3 meals included.
- It has its own power generator if you need power however there is no cell-phone reception or internet.
- Activities/transport options:
- Whale Watching: Groups of 7 or less pay 100 000 COP p/person for a 2-3 hour experience. Groups of 8 or more pay 80 000 COP p/person for a 2-3 hour experience.
- Trips to Utria National park where you can visit the beaches, take an ecological walk and or see waterfalls and rivers as well as many jungle animals: 450 000 COP (3 people) and 800 000 COP (6 people).
- Can also provide private transport to Nuqui if required in order to catch a boat or flight: 400 000 COP for a boat which fits a max of 8 people.
- How to book?: See the map below and go see them on arrival.
Posada Sirena Negra:
Also in downtown Termales is a great choice of accommodation very close to the beach which has its own public restaurant (with very good local dishes) and can organize activities in the area also.
- Restaurant: The menu changes by the day but you can expect good food here including freshly caught fish (we mean it you will often see them hauling in the mornings catch) coconut rice, herbal teas, salad, Patacones, dessert, coconut fish, stews, natural juices, and beers.
- Desayuno (breakfast): 120 000 COP.
- Almuerzo (lunch): 17 000 COP.
- Cena (dinner): 15 000 COP.
- Juice or coffee is usually included. Beer is 3000 COP extra.
- Mini-market: With vegetables if in stock, beer and dry foods like biscuits and simple requirements.
- Sport-fishing: Price depends on the time of year, tide and climate Based on these the distance you may have to travel to get fish will be different, i.e. more or less gas. Commonly you can catch Albacore Tuna and Pago (Red Snapper) but there is a whole host of big fish out there to be had. This is one of the most biodiverse places on earth. Between 150 000 COP and 500 000 COP.
- Guiding services: Jungle Walk with rivers and waterfalls 25 000 COP p/person and between 1-2 hours. Jungle Walk with rivers and waterfalls 25 000 COP p/person and between 1-2 hours.
- How to book?: See the map below and go see them on arrival.
Things to do and see in Termales:
Termales is a wonderful example of village life on the coast. You are surrounded by the beach and jungle but there are a few other highlights to see like,
- Thermal Hotpools: Within the village is a purpose-built hot spring pools complex where you can swim with the local kids and adults who also enjoy using the pools. 12 000 COP will get you in. See the map below for location.
- Micdonio Bar: Come and relax at Micdonios bar on the beach in Termales its 5 minutes max from anywhere in Termales.
- Beer 4000 COP
- Biche (pronounced with a soft b a little bit similar to a ‘v sound’ in English) for 20 000 COP per bottle. Biche is a local white spirit made from Sugar Cane and is considered by some to be a a craft spirit. In Termales it’s all home-made so expect at least a little kick and an unknown alcohol content.
- Also has music. Opening hours are variable.
- Machula Crafts:
- Woven Baskets made of Coconut Palm. Depending on the size between 20 000 and 80 000 COP.
- Coconut Butter (for cooking and massages): 50 000 COP.
- Local Guide: Your hostel or hotel can arrange guiding services but also if you have need of another then you can contact Paulino Mendoza also known as ‘El Chino’ or ‘The Chinese’. El Chino can provide 1 – 4 hour Jungle Experiences where he can show you hunting techniques, medicinal plants, waterfalls and local flora and fauna. Price depends on the number of people but a group of 4 is 150 000 COP p/person.
Map 1: Showing Prana Pacifico Location and accommodation and services in Termales
How to get to Nuqui by boat and by plane including booking details
Now you know where to stay check out our guide on how to get to the Nuqui area. Travel in this part of Colombia is less predictable than in other parts of the world and operates with less obvious rules due to the wild nature of the area and the infamous ‘Choco Time’. Read our guide on all the logistics and options including pricing and contact details. We can also book flights for you with St German Airlines at no extra cost than booking one yourself.
What to do when you get to Nuqui?
We’ve put together a post with all the contact details and activity options for most anything you will want to do on your visit to the Nuqui area. The only real time-dependent activities are Whale Watching in which there is a particular time of year to undertake it (July to October is best) but other than that you can hike, surf (although April and May are better for waves), fish, do yoga and get a massage any time of the year. Note Choco is one of the wettest places on earth but February is often the driest period so potentially you could plan a trip around that if you wanted to avoid rainfall or at least much rainfall – you should still bring a rain jacket:)