Riohacha, Colombia Travel Guide and Notes
It's got potential! The beach area is wide, the water about 50 feet out is a teal blue, the water is warm, sunset facing, and the weather, while hot, is not overbearing, not humid, and cools to about 26C/78F at night.
The Cons: Human filth, trash everywhere, cutting down every tree in sight. There are no coffee shops, no nice restaurants/all the restaurants are the same, one small shopping center, one Smartfit.
Now, I did witness a donkey, what I thought, play and roll in the ground until it stood up and it's front legs were tied. All the locals looked at it. Fucking horrid and disgusting lack of basic empathy.
Riohacha has the annual Vallanato festival, typical Colombian music.
Recommended Restaurants for dining: La Jaus by La Trece (kinda sketchy feeling area, but Cartegena vibes, maybe the "nicest" dining, photo below), Plaza 11 Food House, Maradentro Cafe Bar, La Casa de Marisco (highly rated and fine), Sazon Internacional (pictured above, those small Lobsters were actually delicious!)
Recommending Bars and Nightlife: Waya Coco Beach, Beer House, Malacon Playa (dining and drinking fenced-off beach portion), Bonanza (chill spot with seating right on the beach with alcohol slushies and popsicles), El Callejon (on the main walking street, no google pin, pictured above)
I visited on a Tuesday and Wednesday and even though there were people out at night, it was very calm.
Nautical Recreations is part bar/part restaurant/part private beach. It seems nice.
The Muelle Turistico is the pier and worth a walk out during sunset.
Be sure to check out the pink Flamingos about 45-minutes away.