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Exploring Paradise: Crafting the Ultimate Itinerary for Sailing the San Blas Islands

For the best itinerary, keep away from the area of Carti and most of touristic islands close to the road entrance and venture deep into the Dutch and Coco Bandero Cays. Follow our recommendations to improve your catamaran vacations in San Blas.

What’s the point of renting a catamaran in the most idyllic Caribbean sailing destination and limiting you and your family or fiends to the islands with the easiest access where most of the tourists reach? Like the rest of other charter destinations, San Blas also has it’s own share of places we recommend not to visit. We will not get into that matter now, please refer to the post Top 5 Islands Not To Visit In The San Blas if you are interested.

Anchorage in San Blas
Anchorage in San Blas

Visiting the remote islands in the San Blas archipelago of more than 20 miles can be a truly unique and extraordinary experience,

Below are a few observations to consider when choosing your San Blas tour.

Choosing a 1-3 night sailing trip and wanting to visit many islands is not a good mix. We highly recommend lowering your aspirations in order to have the best results. For only one or two nights and if you choose to come by private flight, islands such Coco Bandero and Cambombia should not be missed. Consider booking 1/2 day more, exiting at 15:30, so that you have the chance to sleep out in the cays the night before your checkout date. If you decide to come in by road and of course you do not mind spending close to 5 hours being transferred, West Dutch Cays or Maoqui island is around an hour sail from your embarking location and is definitely one of the unspoiled jewels seldom visited by other visitors. Once in Maoqui head ashore to meed Jose’s family and grab some local handcrafts or molas. Jose is the Guna indigenous deckhand to our Salina 48 catamaran Mambo Diablo and will show you around.

Deckhand of Catamaran Adventures in San Blas
Jose, our famous deckhand and beloved friend

Catamaran charters of 4-7 nights: this where the fun starts and when the deep San Blas starts to open for you. Flying in to Corazon de Jesus in San Blas opens the doors to Coco Bandero East and West, Cambombia, Bapurgana, Green Island and the rest of the wildest spots in the region. Prepare to see dolphins, turtles, sharks and a huge variety of tropical fish and corals while you snorkel, also get your mind ready for the ultimate cultural shock Reaching the Pool in 5 night charters is possible and absolutely recommended. If you are taking the road in, start off at Banedup in Lemon Cays and work you way through Dutch Cays and the islands that comprise it until you reach the Pool and BBQ island.

Marine life in San Blas
Marine life in San Blas
Maoqui island aerial view.
Maoqui island at the bottom
All inclusive catamaran charter in San Blas.
Jump in the water and head over to the island

Sailing 7-14 or more nights is, from our point of view, the greatest Caribbean sailing experience possible and one that will leave memories for years to come. Fly in and make a one way itinerary through Coco Bandero Cays and Holandeses (Dutch Cays) including the Pool once finished Dutch Cays in Maoqui islands, head South and start progressing through Salardub, Cambombia, Bapurgana, Coco Blanco, Green Island and all the islands in between. Long stays of more than 7 nights gives you time to discover one of the islands closer to shore with the local communities such as Soledad Miria and Rio Azucar. Taking a road transfer? simply start in Salardub and work your way through the islands mentioned counterclockwise.

Coco Bandero Cays in San Blas archipelago
Coco Bandero Cays
Deep San Blas. Guna indigenous woman
Deep San Blas
Guna community in San Blas, Panama
Up for a cultural shock in a Guna community?

As said, we like to keep to the less visited and the bests islands with pristine environment and natural equilibrium. If you would like to visit any island in particular we are totally open to your suggestions. Simply notify us with your reservation and we will brief the captain of your catamaran in San Blas.


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