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The pristine San Blas Archipelago includes picture-perfect tropical islands with white sand and coconut trees. Depending on whom you ask, the number of islands varies between 365 and 380, many of them with no people living on them. Less than 60 islands are home by an Indian tribe, the Kuna. The Kuna is one of the best preserved of all the indigenous cultures of the Americas. The Kuna people are so determined to protect their heritage that they have maintained their autonomy since the Spanish first arrived over 500 years ago. The San Blas province has its own government - the indigenous independent congress - and each island is run by a chief. Tourism is limited to only a few of the islands. But with its turquoise waters, the white sand beaches dotted with palm trees and thatched-roof Kuna villages, the San Blas Archipelago is absolutely worth a visit. Discover the intricately embroidered textiles or 'mola' with geometric multi-coloured designs typical of the community here.
Accommodation here is owned and operated by the Kuna tribe and offers very rustic rooms built out of bamboo and board and only very simple amenities. Alternatively take a private catamaran to cruise around the various islands in comfort and stop where you like, a perfect way to discover the landscapes and people of this attractive archipelago.
San Blas Islands Holidays with Abercrombie & Kent. Let our experts design your perfect San Blas Islands holiday.
Best time to be there
December to March is generally considered the dry season. Temperatures rise in April and the rains arrive on the Pacific side from May to November. The Atlantic side has no specific dry season but there is less rainfall between March and September.
GMT -6 hours
Not required for UK passport holders
Yellow fever if arriving from an infected area
Our recent awards
We particularly appreciated the friendly staff, who got the professional/casual balance just right; the magnificent breakfast spread; the wafts of frankincense; the sunsets; the sheer relaxation provided by the spa; the library; the open fire; the gym that made room for breakfast and, not least, the alcohol licence!
- JD, London