Las Pleyades your local connection in Santa Marta, Colombia!
Meet Oliver Blanco and the team from Las Pleyades,your local connection in Santa Marta, Colombia, the pearl of the Colombian Caribbean . We are excited about the opportunity to share the very best of Santa Marta and the surrounding region with you. This special corner of northwest Colombia offers an incredible mix of history, culture, and natural beauty and our young team of tourism professionals and local Samarian guides are committed to helping you select lodging and tour options to create an unforgettable trip.
Who we are
We feel privileged to be a part of the WHL family and we are thrilled to be able to work together to offer travellers from all over the world the best of this unique natural paradise responsibly. From the promoting of existing tourism opportunities, supporting and developing new options and outlets, but always protecting and caring for the people and the natural treasures that make Santa Marta one of the most special places in the world.
Oliver Blanco is a Spaniard with a degree in International Tourism who left Spain with a pack on his back and a lust for new places and experiences. He discovered the magic of South America and fell under the spell of the fascinating city of Santa Marta. Here he saw a great potential to help preserve Santa Marta’s rich mix of Spanish colonial and native Colombian cultural heritage and protect her natural riches by working to promote a sustainable and eco-friendly tourism- a tourism that might enable the local people to be proud of their rich culture and incredibly beautiful environment and raise self-esteem and improve their standard of living while sharing them with the world.
Las Pleyades' original focus was on tours targeting passengers from cruise ships with stopovers in Santa Marta, but the recent launch of our two tourism portals has resulted in a huge uptick in the number of travellers looking for information about accommodations as well. So whether you are looking for a trek to the mysterious Lost City of the Tayrona or a stay in an ecotourist bungalow nestled between the river and the sea, a visit to Pueblito to learn about the indigenous culture of the Koguis or a hike through the jungles and along the beaches of Tayrona Park, we can help. And we are constantly working to seek out and offer new tourist options and destinations for visitors to this incredible slice of paradise.
What we do for the region
Las Pleyades is dedicated to helping to develop sustainable tourism in the region - a kind of tourism that will protect Santa Marta's natural, cultural and historical heritage while providing opportunities for the local indigenous groups to maintain and preserve their cultures by sharing them with the world. We believe that by creating tourist products that are at once high-quality, interesting, and provocative, while contributing directly to people in need, we can help.
One of our current projects, WHL Travel Santa Marta against children's malnutrition in Colombia, is an excellent example of the kind of work we are committed to in our destination.
We are constantly trying to figure out how to integrate tourism with reality in Colombia. So many visitors enjoy our beaches, our national parks, the vestiges of our colonial heritage, but very few leave with an understanding of our complicated and cruel history full of cultural confrontations which has left a legacy of poverty and need. We are currently qualifying and training bilingual guides from some of the most disadvantaged neighborhoods of Santa Marta to lead tours of our marvelous city. At the same time we are actively involved in trying to set up a series of cooperative dining corners to provide wholesome lunchtime meals to local children. Our idea is to integrate a bit of social history into our city tours, including a brief explanation of our project, which will be the beneficiary of all of the city tour profits. We are thrilled that our project won a recent international Ashoka/Conde Nast competition between similar socially or environmentally targeted tourism projects, but we know that this is only the beginning and there is an enormous task ahead of us. We are excited about our partnership with WHL which connects us to a global community of people who share this common goal.