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Old 31-12-2010, 07:25   #1
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Isla San Andreas, Colombia and Providencia

We will be in Providencia and San Andreas in a month or so. Does anyone have any good advice for these 2 islands. Anything at all. Thanks in advance
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Old 31-12-2010, 09:19   #2
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Both of them are easy to enter.

Contrary to the cruising guides, you can enter San Andreas in the dark as it is well buoyed (more buoys than show on the charts), but the harbor is tight for anchoring and has some really shallow spots so you might want to creep in there. There is a reason for those open spots in the harbor, but you should be able to anchor at the periphery. The agents will find you and offer to help with check in. Your choice if you use them. This is the better island for fuel and groceries.

Providencia is a well protected harbor and could be made at night or in bad weather if the entrance is not breaking. The clarity of the water will spook you into thinking you are in 3 feet of water, but believe your instruments. The harbor is a bit shallow (a lot of it is 6' and sand bottom) but charted correctly. I am guessing that Mr. Bush is still there as an agent and is worth using IMHO as he knows everyone and can find everything for you--just watch his boatman when he comes to you: my boat still has a gash from the nails in the bow of his shore boat. Suggest you hire a cab for a tour of the island while you are there.

These islands are great stops. Providencia is the more natural area, but San Andreas has more restaurants and development. Both are major tourist destinations for Columbians.
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Old 31-12-2010, 10:40   #3
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Another option for touring the island is to rent a power scooter. Most of the locals travel this way. It's fun and relatively safe. It only takes a few hours to get around the island. Try to take in a local baseball game- they are really good, and the whole town turns out. The crowd is really into it. We suspect the local rum adds to the enjoyment!
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Old 29-01-2011, 21:47   #4
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I spent some time last year in San Andreas, the scuba diving there is great. If you make it to the far side of the island there is a Reggae bar across for the San Louis Decamaron hotel that has good food and there is a man there called Di Ghenaral, he is the man to talk to about where to dive, fish, and rent scooters. I flew there with my girl so I payed him to take me to Johnny Key on his small fishing boat, it was like 50,000 colombian pesos and came with lunch(fried fish w/coconut rice) and Coco Loco(a strong rum drink that kind of tastes like Hi-C with gas in it). Remember that San Andreas is a TAX FREE zone like Duty-free at the airport. Have a great time!!!!!!!
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Old 31-01-2012, 14:19   #5
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Re: Isla San Andreas, Colombia and Providencia

Hello Panamajames,

I guess you have already visited our island but will throw a little more information into this thread for any future readers.

Most boaters who come our way prefer Providencia to San Andres. The two islands are very different. San Andres is popular with low-end package tourism and caters mainly to the Colombian market. Development there has been haphazard and has sadly spoilt much of the island. Still, there are some very beautiful parts of San Andres once out of the town centre.

Providencia is at the other end of the spectrum - very undeveloped, and sees only a trickle of tourists. Many visitors here are repeat visitors - lots of people who visit by yacht plan on spending a couple of nights and end up staying for a week or two as it's a magical place.

You can hire scooters of golf buggies to explore the island in a day. The scuba diving is excellent in Providencia - the second biggest barrier reef in the Caribbean is found just offshore. I'm looking at it as I type this.....

I'd also recommend as visit to the McBean Lagoon National Park while you are here. You can visit by kayak or use your own dingy boat. Crystal clear calm waters and offshore islands can be explored there. You might also want to go hiking or horseback riding through the islands forested mountains. Plus there are many undeveloped beaches and coves to explore.
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Old 31-01-2012, 14:51   #6
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Re: Isla San Andreas, Colombia and Providencia

Been there and everything said here is true. Providencia is great. Is Mr. Bush (no, not that one) still there?
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Old 06-08-2013, 14:19   #7
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Re: Isla San Andreas, Colombia and Providencia

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Old 07-08-2013, 19:21   #8
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Re: Isla San Andreas, Colombia and Providencia

Not much to add other than to mention that a stop at the Albuquerque Cays, which are located 25 miles southwest of San Andres, is worthwhile.
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Old 07-08-2013, 20:05   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DeepBlue View Post
Hello Panamajames,

I guess you have already visited our island but will throw a little more information into this thread for any future readers.

Most boaters who come our way prefer Providencia to San Andres. The two islands are very different. San Andres is popular with low-end package tourism and caters mainly to the Colombian market. Development there has been haphazard and has sadly spoilt much of the island. Still, there are some very beautiful parts of San Andres once out of the town centre.

Providencia is at the other end of the spectrum - very undeveloped, and sees only a trickle of tourists. Many visitors here are repeat visitors - lots of people who visit by yacht plan on spending a couple of nights and end up staying for a week or two as it's a magical place.

You can hire scooters of golf buggies to explore the island in a day. The scuba diving is excellent in Providencia - the second biggest barrier reef in the Caribbean is found just offshore. I'm looking at it as I type this.....

I'd also recommend as visit to the McBean Lagoon National Park while you are here. You can visit by kayak or use your own dingy boat. Crystal clear calm waters and offshore islands can be explored there. You might also want to go hiking or horseback riding through the islands forested mountains. Plus there are many undeveloped beaches and coves to explore.
+1. I prefer Providencia too. San Andres is like a Columbian version of Cancun, but yes there are still some beautiful areas there too.

Also, if you visit both islands you must check in and pay seperately at each.
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Old 07-08-2013, 21:10   #10
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One bonus of San Andres beaches is the free parts available from abandoned cars
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Old 28-08-2013, 15:50   #11
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Agreed. Both have a lot to recommend them. Is Mr. Bush still at Providencia?
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