In the Pacific region, settlement is mostly riverine, lacustrine, or coastal and is often quite dispersed. Houses are generally rectangular wooden constructions, built on stilts and with palm-thatch or sheet-metal roofing. There are also some larger villages and towns, such as Quibdó and Tumaco (about 50,000 inhabitants each in 1985). The international port of Buenaventura (population about 160,000 in 1985) is constantly expanding because of immigration from the rural areas. Access to space is so constrained that some residents live in houses on stilts in neighborhoods that stretch onto the tidal mud flats.
In the Cauca region, settlement is on small peasant farms and in villages and towns: all these feed the sugarcane industry's demand for labor. Many Blacks from the Cauca and the Pacific regions have migrated to cities such as Cali and Medellín, where they often live in self-built neighborhoods. In the Caribbean region, the most obvious concentrations of Black people are in settlements along the beaches, often dispersed, occasionally nucleated. Houses are generally of the common rectangular wooden design but are not on stilts. In the hinterland, settlement is in villages and towns, with a more mixed population. Houses are more likely to be made of industrially produced materials. The poorer neighborhoods of large cities such as Barranquilla and especially Cartagena have notable concentrations of Black people.