You can walk from Capurgana to Sapzurro, it takes about one hour and a half over the mountain with plenty of views.
From Turbo you can take a launch from the Waffe (Wharf) that leaves at around 07:30 to Capurgana which costs COP$55,000. The trip takes about 2½ hours. The sea can be a bit rough between December and February so its more enjoyable to get seats at the back of the boat. Also have sun protection with you. Its also a good idea to take something to drink and a snack. To avoid getting your belongings wet you should put them inside a bin liner, which they conveniently sell at the dock for an outrageous price COP$1000. They charge an excess baggage fee of COP$1000 per kg exceeding 10 kg.
From Capurgana you can take a launch to Sapzurro for COP$10,000, most boats leave at 12:00 although you can get boats as late as 17:00 (but don't rely on it).
From Puerto Obaldia, Panama it's a 45-min US$15 launch ride.
A number of sailboats also run between Panama and Sapzurro, especially between November and April when the trade winds make the Panama - Cartagena trip untenable. The PC Sailing has some candidates. It includes a three day tour of the islands. See the boat section for more info.
You can arrange a launch in the morning to Puerto Obaldia (COP$30,000) and catch a flight to Panama City. Air Panama operates one flight on Sundays, Tuesdays, and Thursdays departing at 09:30 arriving 10:40. Bookings should be made by phone as they don't always check the email or website.
A number of sailboats have now made Sapzurro their home as well. They have chosen the Sapzurro - Porvenir, San Blas route over the Cartagena - Porvenir route for a gentler ride while seeing more of San Blas. These trips include three full days in islands meals included at US$300-350. Talk to the Chileno at Paraiso Sapzurro for scheduling launches and sailboats. +57 313-685-9862 Spanish speaking.
There are no roads in Sapzurro, so your options to get around are to walk or go by boat, but thats not really a problem as you can get from one end of the village to the other in 10 minutes.
You can walk to Playa Blanca the White Beach, La Miel, Panama, (make sure you have your passport or colombian cedula with you)
You can go on a jungle trek to Capurgana an hour and a half walk over the mountain.
The Diana Waterfall is nice especially if has rained recently.
There is a half an hour walk along the coast to Cabo Tiburon - Shark Cape, the coastal border between South and Central America.
There are many coral reefs in the Sapzurro Bay and along the coast to Cabo Tiburon ranging from 2 m deep to 40 m, you can snorkel or go freediving, mask and snorkels can be rented at Mystic Roots.
Where the jungle meets the sea. Hiking, swimming, snorkeling, waterfall, exotic birds, and monkeys.
You should take into account that there are no ATMs in Sapzurro or the surrounding region, and no businesses in Sapzurro accept credit cards, so you should bring enough cash preferably in COP or USD with you.
At the Club de Yates (Yacht Club) you can buy Mola, a cloth sewn with intricate designs, a handicraft made by the Kuna Yala tribe in Panama and/or a T shirt to take back to the folks back home. They also sell beach articles.
You should check out the local ginger, borojo and hibiscus wines sold in the Club de Yates and some restaurants and bars in Sapzurro.
There is a local bakery run by Andres and Eloisa, ask for directions.
If you are in the mood for some delicious home made brownies or a refreshing lemon cake, contact Clemencia in the Zingara Hostal.
Shops start to close from 19:00 onwards so if you need to buy provisions take that into account.
The most common dish in the restaurants in Sapzurro is fried red snapper, rice made with coconut milk and fried plantain. If you are looking for something different there is a Peruvian Restaurant "Paraiso cangrejales" where you can eat Ceviche de Pescado (raw fish in lemon juice), Fish in Mango Sauce, Chorillana and Chicharron de Pescado (fish steaks). Also the Posada serves great seafood dishes with shrimps, squid and fish. For a lighter dish there is a Pizza "Hut" (it really is a hut! - not related to the pizza chain).
If you want to chill out go to the Mystic Roots Coffee Bar, run by an Englishman, it has a relaxed atmosphere. Drinks include cocktails, shots, capuccinos (hot or frappé) and expressos. They play a variety of music from around the world, also you can ask for the music you want. Several nights of the week there is live music. There is WiFi internet access with a good connection suitable for video calls back home. It is on the sea front next to one of the nicest beaches in Sapzurro, near to the Cultural Center (Centro Cultural).
- [dead link] Paraiso Sapzurro, ☏ . Check-in: 14:00, check-out: 13:00. Home of the Chileno. Cabanas, hammocks, camping, showers, bar, and restaurant. varies.
- Hotel Doña Triny, ☏ . Check-in: 14:00, check-out: 13:00. Cabanas, rooms, showers, bar, and restaurant. varies.
- 1 Mystic Roots, ☏ . Check-in: 13:00, check-out: 10:00. Cabañas, suites on the sea front, private access to a beach, and coffee bar with WiFi. COP$20,000-50,000.
On various days (not always weekends) there is loud music on the waterfront. The farthest from the bay will provide you with a good evenings sleep.
While the area was subject to smuggling and banditry in the past, it has been fairly safe for a number of years now and guerrilla movement of FARC was driven out of area over ten years ago. It's quite safe to walk between surrounding towns and Sapzurro.
The tap water is not treated, so you should either drink bottled water or filtered water.
At some times of day there are mosquitoes so bring insect repellent and for jungle treks long sleeved shirts and long trousers to protect yourself.
Bring a torch with you as the electricity in Sapzurro and the surrounding region is not available 24 hours a day.
There is WiFi internet access at the Mystic Roots Coffee Bar and additionally you can purchase a SIM card (see below), suitable for video calls to your friends and family back home.
There is no postal service in the region, however you can send articles by air freight to and from Capurgana-Medellín.
You can make national phone calls from the super giro lottery and pay for the time used.
Phone/WiFi: Take into account that Comcel is the only mobile phone operator with coverage in Sapzurro. You can purchase a SIM card at the Kiosk by the water front. Cell Phone and Data service can be paid for there. There is 3G service in Sapzurro.
To travel by boat to Turbo you need to take one of the boats leaving Sapzurro at 06:30 which gets you to Capurgana in time to catch the boat to Turbo that leaves around 07:30.