Port in Puerto Narino where the boats from Leticia arrive on the Amazon River, Colombia

How To Get From Leticia To Puerto Nariño, Amazon, Colombia

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If you are planning on visiting the Colombian Amazon then I highly recommend visiting Puerto Nariño from Leticia. It is an amazing peaceful town in the middle of the Amazon with lots of things to do.

To get there you will have to travel by boat for 2 hours up the Amazon from the travel hub and city of Leticia to Puerto Nariño.

Many people who visit the Colombian Amazon will just do tours from Leticia. But if you want to experience local life in the Amazon then spending a few days in Puerto Nariño is a great option.

We spent 5 days in Puerto Nariño and it is one of our favorite trips ever. So keep reading and find out the best way to get from Leticia to Puerto Nariño

How to get from Leticia to Puerto Nariño

To get from Leticia to Puerto Nariño, you must purchase tickets for the express boat. The company is called Expressos Unidos Tres Fronteras and is located here 📍 near the central market. You can’t buy them online.

There are 3 departure times each day:

  • 7 am
  • 10 am
  • 1:30 pm

Tickets cost 38,000 pesos (10 USD) per person and you will need to show your passport when purchasing them (a photo on the phone is enough).

🎟️ Tip: Apparently the 7 am boat can sell out. So if you are planning on catching that boat it is best to buy a ticket the day before.

💰 Tip: You will need to pay for your tickets in cash. Before you travel to Puerto Nariño you should have enough cash for your whole trip. There is no ATM in Puerto Nariño (but in Leticia) and you cannot use your card at any of the businesses there.

Express boat Leticia to Puerto Nariño
Express boat from Leticia to Puerto Nariño, the luggage comes on top

Departure of the boat

The boat to Puerto Nariño will depart from the main Amazon River. How you get there will depend on what season it is and the water level of the river:

  • In the wet season, you will have to catch a small boat for 5,000 pesos over the river. Then you will have to walk across an island to the main river.
  • If it is the dry season there will be a bridge over the first river so you can walk over.

Either way, the person at the ticket office should ask you if you know how to get to the boat. If you don’t know they will ask you to meet them at the office beforehand and take you to the boat.

🕙 Tip: The people at the ticket office told us to meet at the office at 9 am for our 10 am boat. But they didn’t take us to the boat until 9:45! So you only need to be there 30 minutes beforehand at the most or bring a coffee or snacks.

A woman standing next to a boat on a wooden dock that is traveling from Leticia to Puerto Narino
She guided us from the office to the boat and managed boarding

Ride time and Comfort

The boat ride from Leticia to Puerto Nariño took us just under 2.5 hours. But this can vary depending on how many people are dropped off and picked up along the way.

Also, the comfort of the boat ride can vary a lot depending on the boat that you get. Our boat from Leticia to Puerto Nariño had uncomfortable plastic chairs and a really loud engine. So it wasn’t the most pleasant experience.

But our boat from Puerto Nariño to Leticia had super comfortable chairs and a much quieter engine. It made the experience so much more comfortable.

Which boat you get depends on what company is operating that day. There are two companies that operate the route and the blue company had by far the most comfortable boat.

💺 So if it is possible ask if the boat has padded seats. But you will probably have to take whatever boat is going that day.

People on a boat in the Amazon from Leticia to Puerto Narino
Our boat from Leticia to Puerto Nariño had uncomfortable plastic chairs
An empty boat on the Amazon River with comfortable seats
Our return boat from Puerto Nariño to Leticia was way more comfortable!

Where to buy your Return Tickets

We did not buy a return ticket from Leticia to Puerto Nariño. So we had to buy ours in Puerto Nariño which was actually not straightforward.

There are two companies that run the boat service between Leticia and Puerto Nariño. Each company has a different office so you will have to buy your tickets at a different location depending on what day you want to leave.

The best way to find out is to ask the people sitting at the entrance to Puerto Nariño who take the tourist tax. They will point you in the right direction.

The boats from Puerto Nariño to Leticia leave 3 times a day at 7 am, 11 am and 3 pm daily. Tickets cost 38,000 pesos (10 USD) per person in cash.

Read also: Top things to do in Leticia 🦜

A woman standing in between the letters for Puerto Narino in the Colombian Amazon
Ask at the grass hut to the left of the Puerto Nariño sign where to buy your tickets to Leticia
Ticket receipt for the tourist tax in Puerto Narino
There you pay your 15,000 pesos (4 USD) tourist tax on arrival in Puerto Nariño
Port in Puerto Nariño where the boats leave to Letica
The express boat from Leticia arrives and leaves from this port in Puerto Nariño in the dry season; in the wet season it leaves further down at a big bridge

What to pack for Puerto Nariño

  • Mosquito Repellent – This is a must for the Amazon. I hate using repellent with DEET in it but the spray really works. In some areas, you will get eaten alive without it. You can also cover your skin up but the mosquitos will devour any skin that is exposed.
  • Lightweight clothing – this will help protect you from the sun and mosquitos. I personally just wore shorts and a t-shirt the whole time. But you will have to use far less sunblock and insect repellent with proper clothing.
  • Sunscreen and a hat – the sun is super strong in the Amazon with a very high UV Index. Despite lightweight clothing, protect exposed skin with it.
  • Washable sneakers – simple running shoes worked for us. We got boots from our guide when we booked jungle tours.
  • Refillable water bottle – all accommodations we stayed at had free cold refills!
  • Camera, GoPro, or a good phone – you will want to take good photos!
Walking through the jungle close to Puerto Narino, Amazon, Colombia
Pack light with long sleeves to protect your skin from the sun and insects

Where to stay in Puerto Nariño

We stayed 5 nights in Puerto Nariño at Cabañas Alto del Aguila and loved it! It’s rustic so don’t expect a luxurious stay but the owners and the wildlife experience will make up for it.

Many Leticia tours go there to see the monkeys, the colorful macaws, a baby caiman, and a matamata (a turtle with a triangle-shaped head) that come and live at the property wildly. So why not stay there and experience it fully?

Our private cabaña for 20 USD a night in Puerto Narinõ

What to do in Puerto Nariño

There are so many cool things to do and see in Puerto Nariño! We covered them all in detail in our Puerto Nariño travel guide linked below.

  • Go up the mirador for an amazing view
  • Eat at a street BBQ in the evenings
  • Visit Peru on a tour and see sloths
  • Go on a boat ride and spot pink dolphins
  • Go piranha fishing (we caught 3 species!)
  • Go kayaking on the Amazon river
  • Visit the fish farm Wochine
  • Go on a night jungle tour
  • Visit the Amazon Underwater Museum
  • Visit or stay at Cabañas Alto del Aguila to see monkeys
  • Take a photo with all the monuments

Read also: Top things to do in Puerto Nariño 🐒

Enjoy the boat ride from Leticia to Puerto Nariño – we saw dolphins!

Taking the boat from Leticia to Puerto Nariño is part of your Amazon experience. You will travel down the murky Amazon River and have the chance to spot dolphins – we saw them both ways, so keep your eyes open! 🐬

A grey dolphin in the Amazon River on the way from Leticia to Puerto Narino

Puerto Nariño is really worth visiting and one of the most underrated places to visit in Colombia. If you would like to know more about what to do when you are in Puerto Nariño make sure to read our in-depth guide linked below.


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Travel, health and fitness fanatic from New Zealand. Co-founder of Happy Healthy Nomads and always on a hunt for good food.

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