Best Hotels to Stay in San Blas by Car
First of all, we need to say there are no “hotels” in San Blas as we know it in the city, all the accommodations are huts made by the kunas. Given that San Blas is a protected zone by the kunas, they are the only people allowed to service the tourism in all fronts: lodging, food, transportation, guides etc, therefore San Blas is not only the 2nd ATTRACTION in Panama, right after Panama Canal, but it is also a complete adventure to meet their culture, how the work and how they think. They are pretty peaceful, they are never in a rush, they don’t get frustrated and everything is done very calm, so please consider this, as you will need to have long waiting time almost for everything – to get to the boat, to be picked up and to be served, once you are mentally advised and prepared, then you will enjoy at its best this little paradise.
Each island is served by a family, normally there are only one or two families in each island to take care of it.
No 4. Island Nubesidup
The beach of this island is one of my favorites, the mood of this island quiet and peace, it is a very small Island 30min from Carti port with only 5 huts, very private and not very crowded. The owner keeps the island very clear and with a touch of charm, they have a hammock above the sea, where you can rest and make amazing pictures. They like to have foreign people, with no very loud music. Bathrooms are shared.
3. Island Aguja
No3. Island Aguja. (Cabins with private bathroom)
Island Aguja is a super tiny island which is only 15 minutes from the port, it is the closest island with the best infrastructure, which makes it ideal for small kids or babies. They have 3 amazing huts with wooden floor, terrace, and private bathroom, and they also have huts for lower budgets and even camping. These is a crowded island normally on weekends, but it is worth for only 1 night or Day tour.
They have many options of food such as fried fish, shrimps, lobster among others. Other facilities: Volleyball court, umbrellas, chairs for rent.
No 2. Island Narasgandup - Huts Over the sea
No 2. Narasgandup Naranjo Chico (Cabins Over the sea)
This is a great island also recommended for families. They have 5 huts, 2 above the sea with terrace, private bathroom, and wooden floor, and 3 at the beach also with wooden floor and private bathroom. Ausel is great, he has raised his son in the island and he is very friendly, the people always come back with a great experience from here. Breakfast normally includes fruits, which is a plus in San Blas. The island is size medium, with amazing sunset views, and very nice lightening during the night.
1. Island Waily Lodge - Cabins Over the sea
No 1. Waily Lodge (Cabins Over the sea)
This is a little paradaise in all the senses in SanBlas, it is the closest service to an hotel in the city. The owner Mr. Toño had a course on architecture, and he designed these very original cabins over the sea with terrace, and private bathroom, they also have huts at the beach with private bathroom and wooden floor. A big restaurant over the sea with delicious fresh food, the manager trained his chef with the Sheraton hotel, the food is tasty but not as fancy 😊. There are starfishes all around the island, feel free to explore below the huts, this is the place where they hide. Amenities includes volleyball court, restaurant, showers at the beach. Soon they will create their own swimming pool where you can swim with lobsters and starfishes. Very calm island and friendly staff. Mr Heraldo will be there for anything you need.
Find your Island in San Blas!
Many of our clients have went to San Blas Islands but they dont know exacly where are they or how much time it takes to went from the main port to the Islands.
This is why we have created this map, with the help if Google Maps to know exactly how far is your islands and calculate how many minutes it will take to arrive.
CLICK HERE TO SEE OUR MAP.
First the ground transport from Panama city to Carti, which is the biggest port in San Blas it takes around 2.5 hours.
GOING TO ISLA AGUJA TAKES ONLY 15 MINUTES, It is the closest islands, so if you suffer seasickness, this is the island for you. They also have many clean bathrooms, volley court, lunch and breakfast menu very vary (shrimps, fish, lobster etc). Also they have Premium Cabins with private bathroom, fan, hammock and wooden floor!, for lower budgets they also have options for camping.
CLICK HERE TO BOOK IN AGUJA
There are islands only to visit, and spend less than 2 hours such as Island Perro and Natural Swimming pool, which are the best attractions in San Blas. Perro since it has a sunken boat just in front of it which today is a coral reef, so its amazing to go there are make snorkeling. But I dont recommend to spend your day there, since it is very crowded, and of course the NATURAL SWIMMING POOL, I beleive is a sunken island 1 meter depth, so you can walk and walk long distances and spot some starfishes, this is great for the kids!! The distance from the port to Perro is around 45minutes.
CLICK HERE TO MAKE A DAY TRIP TO THIS ISLANDS
Then to sleepover, the Island I would recommend with all my heart is Naransgandup, it takes only 30 minutes to arrive there. Its not only the Island host "Ausel" which is great and very responsable, but also the island has some magic during the night, it is romantic. You also have a free lobster dinner if you spend 2 nights there. They have in total 5 Cabins, 2 Above the sea and 3 in the beach, all of them with private bathroom and wooden floor.
CLICK HERE TO BOOK IN NARASGANDUP
If you need more information for the rest of the islands, please visit our website:
Hi Thanks for booking with us PanamaSanBlasTours. I have been living in Panama for more than 7 years, now I´ve lost the count on the times I have been in San Blas. I just love it, it is a true paradaise barely touched by man. All advantages and disadvantages make it different to what we are use it, but that is its essence. Now lets see what tips can make a better adventure.
How to arrive to San Blas?
First pick you up at 5:30 am in your hotel, if you are the first one, then you have to travel to pick up the others, or if you are the last one, you have to wait until 6:20 in the lobby of your hotel.
Then they take you to an agency to give you a bracelet, and you will see the first Island San Blas until 10am. We “PanamaSanBlasTours” have a special policy for not to take more than 6 pax in the same car.
Recommended Islands In San Blas
Food in SanBlas.
The food on the islands is good. There are islands like Aguja that have menu with different prices, from 7 USD fried fish, up to shrimp at 8-9USD, king prawns at 12-13USD, up to lobster at 20 USD, all sided by coconut rice and salad.
On the other islands they usually provides fried fish or fried chicken, fried rice and salad, but if you want lobster, you only need to ask for it, and you will be charged 20USD more per person.
Buy lobsters / Centollos.
In the port after the Daytours around 4-5pm there are Little Kuna canoes that sell lobsters or crabs at a very good price, from USD 5 per big lobster/crab. They even sell your whole boat for 40 USD. As I live here, sometimes I buy the whole boat and I take 10-12 small/médium lobsters and a couple of crabs for 40 USD.
You just have to say "How much for everything", and they usually tell you 40 USD. Once I get an octopus, I still have it frozen, because I do not know how to cook it.
Well that's it. If you have more questions, you can write to me!