The islands of the San Blas Archipelago
are strung out along the Caribbean coast
of Panama from the Golfo de San Blas
nearly all the way to the Colombian
border. San Blas is a series of 378
islands of which only 49 are inhabited
by the fiercely independent Kuna Indians.
Although only a 20-minute plane ride
away from Panama City, a trip to the
San Blas islands will transport you
20 centuries into the past.
Kuna Indians, who run all the islands
as an autonomous province, with minimal
interference from the national government
have maintained their own economic system,
language, customs and culture, with
distinctive dress, legends, music and
dance and thus have avoided traditional
economy of the islands is based on coconut
sales, fishing and tourism, and they
offer travelers good diving, snorkeling
and swimming. Facilities are few and
simple, as is the food.
The area is surrounded by reefs, some
of the oldest in the world, and offer
wonderful diving and snorkeling opportunities,
the best of which are between the months
of April and June.
most interesting islands are Achutupu,
Kagantupu and Coco Blanco. There are
flights to several of the islands from
Panama City or you can catch a ride
with Kuna merchant ships from Colón,
who will find the perfect island for
your sunbathing and snorkeling pleasure.
Blas is famous for one of its arts and
crafts, the mola. Kuna women make rainbow
colored fabrics, emblazoned with fish,
birds, jungle animals and geometric
designs that would impress Picasso himself.
The men still fish from canoes as they
did before Columbus came. They still
run up to the corner coconut palm trees
for something fresh and cool to drink
each morning, just as they have for
CHICO, TUPILE, AILIGANDI AND USTUPU
Tule Revolution Anniversary. They present
a dramatic feather of post battles,
typical dances and drink fermented beverages.
Patronal festivities in which western
style dances are performed, there are
regional and national dishes, there
are also basketball competitions.
MULATUPO Inokina Anniversary. Typical
dances and dishes, games and speeches.
FULIPE Patronal festivities, western
style dances as well as typical dances,
NARGANA Charles Robinson Anniversary.
Western style dances as well as typical
dances, regional dishes.
USTUP0 Nele-Kantule, Dances, dishes,
speeches, deceased eulogy.
September 1 TUWALA Yabilikiña
Anniversary, dishes, typical dances,
sport games and speeches.
El Porvenir Hotel: 13 rooms. Tel: 221-1397
Hotel San Blas: 31 rooms, kuna style,
3 daily meals, tours around inhabited
and uninhabited islands. radio communication.
Hotel Anai 20 rooms, Wooden floor and
Kuna Kishua Hotel. Five basic rooms.
Sugtupu With cabin like aspect, wooden
floor and cone walls.
La Palmera One story concrete building,
With restaurant and bar. It belongs
to the Town Cooperative Society.
Hotel Nargana 10 rooms; communication
by radio. Hotel construction Kuno style.
Hotel Uaguitupo Cabins, restaurant,
Cabins, restaurant, bar.(Sidra River).
Cabins, restaurant, bar.
Eco-resort. 6 stand-alone cabinas and
large restaurant. Tel: 269-6313