Things to do in Minca in the Mountains

Things to do in Minca Colombia

This article has links to products and services we love, which we may make commission from.

Minca, a small town with a population of one thousand, tucked away in the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta mountains, really has it all and here are the things to do in Minca for all backpackers travelling to Colombia (my favourite country to backpack around!)


Casa Loma | Minca Colombia

Las Cascadas De Marinka | Minca Colombia

Casa Loma | Minca Colombia

Santa Marta to Minca

Head to Calle 11, Carrera 12 and catch a 4 x 4. This will set you back 7 COP / £1. 80 (cheap). The only draw back is you need to wait on enough passengers to fill the car. Then it’s a forty minute ride out of town and into the mountains.

When you arrive, locals on motorbikes will be waiting to offer you a lift to your hostel. If like us, you are staying with Casa Loma there is no need to take a mototaxi, just walk to the church and take the next left. Then it’s a hefty climb up some stairs but it’s worth it for the view.

Things to do in Minca

There are three options to visit watering holes / waterfalls in and around Minca which is perfect for the clammy weather and mosquito bites.

Las Cascadas De Marinka

We visited Las Cascadas De Marinka (entry 3 COP / 77p ), it can be reached by mototaxi for 6 COP / £1.54 or takes one hour to walk there and 45 minutes back. We took a taxi there and walked back. The easy trek back was actually very nice.

Things to do in Minca, Colombia

The water was shallow but a nice dip in the heat.

Las Cascadas De Marinka | Minca ColombiaPozo Azul

These are smaller waterfalls pools, pretty to look at but not for swimming according to another traveller. It is free though and only a 45 minute walk there / 30 minute back.

Las Piedras

This is a stream from a waterfall which then meets the river Minca, it only takes 15 minutes to walk according to the Casa Loma bible.

If you are feeling like a challenge and don’t want to miss any of Minca’s hotspots there is the Los Pinos Trek which take 5 – 7 hours and is intermediate in difficulty but does pass both Pozo Azul and Las Cascadas (add more time if swimming!)

Minca’s Nightlife 

The locals love a fiesta on a Saturday night! There are quite a few bars in the main town which sell food and drink. Two even have WiFi! Minca really is a special town in the mountains.

Accommodation in Minca

We had the pleasure of staying at the rustic Casa Loma, a massive tree house! Loma means hill and this makes sense when you see the eco hostel.

Casa Loma

We stayed in a cute private cabana which is a round room. Luckily for me each room has a mosquito net. The bathrooms and showers were directly behind us.

Things to do in Minca, Colombia I Casa Loma

If you need a bit of luxury in your life, Casa Loma has a ‘presidential suite,’ El Mirador Room with private views of the Sierra Nevada mountains.

At the other end of the scale there are fourteen hammocks with nets and also a personal locker for your belongings.

Casa Loma | Things to do in Minca, Colombia
There are also practical dorm rooms which have private curtains and lamps, very much like our stay at Kokopeli in Cusco.

Similar to Costeño Beach Surf Ecolodge, the hostel encourages socialising at meal times. Everyone dines together at 19:30-20:00. Meals are mostly vegetarian and thumbs up for the veggie burger and banana bread for pudding. Breakfast is also on offer, I was happy to buy some porridge. After dinner, everyone retires to the bonfire, led into the woods by bright lights which shine on the trees, nice touch.

The magic really happens before dinner… Happy hour cocktails from the outside bar whilst watching the sunset was just incredible.

Casa Loma | Things to do in Minca, Colombia

Jay and Anne, who run the eco hostel (which utilises rain water where possible) are very helpful. They have an organised ‘bible’ which gives you a history lesson about the hostel; ideas for things to do onsite such as yoga (15 COP), Spanish lessons or forest cinema (!) plus suggestions in and around Minca. If you seek out unusual accommodation why not check out how to stay in a castle in Scotland?!

Casa Loma
Address: Calle 1, No 5-160 , Minca, Colombia
Contact313 8086134, 321 2246632
Price: 90 COP / £23.11 to 17 COP / £4.37

Thanks to Casa Loma for housing us for the night, these opinions are our own but the views are all Casa Loma / Minca

Where have you seen the best sunset?

26 thoughts on “Things to do in Minca in the Mountains

  1. Adam McConnaughhay says:

    Very good guide. I haven’t stayed at Casa Loma, but walked up there one day. That view is spectacular! Minca continues to grow as a destination but still feels small and not overcrowded.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *