January 24, 2019

From the USA flying from Miami or New York directly to Medellin and then taking another flight to Nuqui Airport is the quickest route from the USA. From Spain, you can fly directly from Madrid to Medellin and then take a connecting flight to Nuqui. Let’s look at the specifics of each of these and some alternatives if you aren’t quite able to fly directly to Medellin.


The beach near Termales after rough seas with the island location of Prana Pacifico in the background.

How to get from USA to Nuqui, Colombia

  • From wherever you are in the USA your best bet is to get yourself to New York or Miami, whichever is easier for you.
  • From New York or Miami, you can fly directly to Medellin, Colombia and then onto Nuqui on a separate flight. Avianca will do a direct flight from New York (around 5-6 hours flight time) and LATAM from Miami (around 3-4 hours flight time).
  • You can learn all about how to get to Nuqui from Medellin here in a separate article where we note all of the necessary details like which airport, luggage restrictions as well as logistics for getting to your hotel. Traveling to Nuqui and then onto your hotel nearby is an adventure in itself so make sure to check out this article.
  • If you cannot get to New York or Miami to take advantage of a direct flight to Medellin you can also fly to Bogota (Colombia’s capital) from Orlando, Miami, Washington DC, Dallas, Atlanta, Houston and LA and to Cartagena (A UNESCO World Heritage City on the Caribbean coast of Colombia) from Miami and Atlanta.
  • Then you can take internal Colombian flights to Medellin and then onto Nuqui.
  • Colombia’s national airlines are Viva Air and Avianca. Viva Air is a low-cost carrier but has very particular rules so make sure you read below to save you from incurring extra costs with them.
  • Important note about Viva Air: They are really pedantic about their check procedures and it will cost you at the airport if you haven’t followed them properly. For example, if you haven’t printed (a PDF on your phone isn’t enough) your e-ticket to present at the gate they will charge you to do so. There is no need for this it’s just a money making scam but they do have lower fares so if you are aware of this then it’s possible to save some money. Make sure to read the terms and conditions of your ticket in order to avoid this and potentially other costs. YOU’VE BEEN WARNED!

US visa requirements to Colombia

All US citizens must have a US passport book valid at their time of entry into Colombia with one blank page for a visa stamp. No tourist visa applications are required to be submitted for stays shorter than 90 days, but all visitors may be required to present vaccination records for yellow fever if they passed through Brazil prior to their stay in Colombia.

All 90-day visas on arrival may be extended another 90 days once in Colombia. As always, proof of ongoing travel is required.

As quoted from Travel Visa Pro.

How to get from Spain to Nuqui, Colombia

  • From wherever you are in Spain your best bet is to get yourself to Madrid. Iberia and LATAM both have direct non -stop flights to Medellin. Others airlines have more flights but there is usually a connecting flight involved taking longer time. A direct flight would be 10 -11 hours which is more than enough time in a plane.
  • From Madrid, you can fly directly to Medellin or to Cali and then onto Nuqui on a separate flight.
  • If you are flying to Cali it is possible for you to come to Nuqui by boat from nearby Buenaventura. This will save you going to Medellin at all although on your return from the Nuqui area you are still able to fly to Medellin. Check out our article on how to get to Nuqui for all the details on boat travel from Buenaventura.

Spanish visa requirements for Colombia

Spanish passport holders get 90 days on arrival which is able to be extended to 180 days if necessary. No more than 180 days in a one year period.

As quoted from Wikipedia.

How long should my holiday to Nuqui be?

Nuqui is a logistically difficult part of Colombia to get to but the time and effort are worth it. We recommend you spend at least 3 nights here to take advantage but 1 week is better. A week gives you time to recover from travel if you need it as well as plan some half day or day trips and be able to visit the local communities – a treat in itself!

Choco Time: Here in the Colombian Pacific Coast things happen at their own pace. You are at the mercy of the sun, tides and the relaxed scheduling prevalent in the area known as ‘Choco time’ so rushing while you are here will lead to frustration. Staying for a week gives you enough time to relax and get everything you want to do done.

Cheapest Tickets

Traveling outside of peak travel time to Colombia will help you save money on a ticket if you desire. Peak season for flights to Colombia are December to March so buying a flight outside of these times is ideal to save a little money. December to March is the driest season of the year and hence why it is more popular.

The Nuqui area has one added bonus to buying a ticket in the offseason. From July to October (more or less) is the Whale breeding season in the area and hence Whale Watching season. Taking advantage of a offseason flight can net you an experience of a lifetime. We aren’t kidding about that. From our location you can hear Whales singing sometimes and when a whale breaches in the Nuqui area it can be a dramatic event!

Where to stay when you get here?

We provide accommodation at Prana Pacifico across 3 locations. We have accommodation to suit large groups, couples, backpackers and everything in between. If you would like to inquire about a booking with us you can read about all of our options here as well as accommodation options with our friends in nearby villages.

Onward Travel

After your stay in Nuqui you can return to Medellin by plane (via Nuqui Airport) to carry on your way or return via boat to the port town of Buenaventura which is near Cali to carry on. If you are thinking you want to go to the Southern areas of Colombia (i.e. Cali perhaps) or want to travel overland to Ecuador then the boat is a decent option and costs similar to a plane to Medellin. You can read all about how to get in or out of the Nuqui area by boat or plane here where we have described all the logistics and given contact details for boat travel (accurate as at January 2019 – if you are reading this in the distant future please feel free to check with us via our contact page and confirm these are still the same) and even a map with pick up and drop off locations.

More text, if you need it