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San Blas Islands, Panama

sunny

So we set sail and I’m not going to lie. It was a horrible 36 hours and was really rough and everyone was feeling ill accept for Hannah who had found her sea legs quite early on. Germans record for getting to the San Blas Islands was 40 hours from Cartagena. We beat it by 5 hours I think- that’s how windy it was!!

San Blas Islands is a group of Islands off the coast of Panama. There are 368 of them and they are slowly disappearing due to global warming. Only a handful are inhabited and one of them is just big enough for a tiny runway!
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Our Yacht Eucalyptus dropped anchor inbetween 2 small islands where it was a lot calmer. We took a load of tents over to the island and set up camp. We had met up with another yacht run by Umberto so his 3 passengers joined us on the island too. Apart from the hut and the 2 fisherman who lived on the island there was nothing else on the there. No electricity, no running water, no gas and no sewage, just a tiny bore hole which filtered the sea water sort of! The only food available to us was coconuts and the fish in the sea. We figured quite early on that eating the coconuts was calorie negative because it took absolutely ages to get into them!
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Food was mostly lobster, crab and fish BBQd at night over the open fire which was gorgeous. The fishermen didn’t want paying in money, in fact they looked quite insulted when we offered money- they wanted alcohol or smokes!!!
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There was a funny little dog who was also called Umberto who lived between islands. The first time we saw him he was swimming between the 2 islands to greet the fishermen, when he got to the boat he hauled himself up into the boat and got a lift with them back to the shore! There is a little story about him that he was out with the fishermen in the middle of the sea miles and miles away from land when they got into difficulty and the boat ended up sinking. Him and the 2 fishermen had to stay afloat for 2 days until a passing ship spotted them and brought them in. He was ill for quite a while because he had swallowed so much sea water but slowly he recovered. He was with us on the island one day and started barking all of a sudden and right out in the distance you could see the fishermen coming back in. Quite a cute dog!!
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We spent our time making things out of the coconut shells and catching rays, quite relaxing really!!
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After 3 nights on the island we then headed off to Portobelo but had to stop off at another island to get stamped into Panama.
Then the fun begins……..it’s a race against the clock to get up to Mexico in time for our flight…..

Posted by downbhoy 22.05.2011 16:22 Archived in Panama

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