Scattered into the Caribbean Sea just off the north-west coast of Panama, you will find the fascinating San Blas Archipelago. These 378 islands are a biological treasure trove, untouched and mostly uninhabited – save for the tall, waving palms and occasional tree crab. Here you will find your bliss and the ultimate version of paradise.
They say there is one island for every day of the year in the San Blas Archipelago, indiscriminately tossed into the Caribbean Sea in an approximate 100-mile radius to be explored, at your leisure. The smaller islands of San Blas are uninhabited, but the larger land masses such as Aguja Island, Guanidup Island, Chichimei, Yandup Island and El Porvenir are populated by the peaceful native folk, known as the Kuna’s.
With powdery white sand beaches, tall swaying palms and impossibly clear, warm sea waters, the San Blas islands are your postcard images of paradise, brought to reality. The tourism on the larger island of San Blas is run by the native Kuna people, with very little interference from national government so as to best preserve the natural state of these islands. Many of the homes on the larger islands are carefully hand-crafted by the locals from natural materials, while these inhabitants proudly go about their day-to-day life with their own set of laws and norms. Part of any visit to these larger islands is to experience and appreciate local culture by respecting their traditions, way of life and trying local food and delicacies.
Water sports lovers, eat your heart out – San Blas is world renowned for pristine sailing conditions – the best way to travel between islands and get a true feel of paradise, while avid fishermen are spoiled for choice between trying their hand at catching the famed marlin, sailfish or wahoo when fishing with the local Kuna. Due to the protection afforded by the coral reefs and sand banks, the San Blas islands also offer excellent wind conditions for both wind surfers and experienced kite boarders, while a whole new world of unspoiled beauty and rainbow coral reefs lies beneath the warm, tranquil waters, begging to be explored.