"Panama a beautiful retreat... yet almost unknown" Top 5 Page for this destination Panama by Ekahau
Panama Travel Guide: 1,668 reviews and 4,012 photos
This adventure to the Emberá people of Panama all started with a photo sent from Kiwi. The author of Tintin used this Kiwi sent for one of his animated adventures – the light just came. Oh ya I want to do that I said.
So went to the VT pages and found Indians in Panama right on VT and a VT expert on the subject-- snoopy9109 (thank you Tammy). So off I went on a long weekend adventure to Panama, complete with my Tintin book on the subject and new VT travel guide tool (thank you VT).
The Emberá people are beautiful indigenous first nation people who live their own lifestyle - quite unique. They live much as they did before the Europeans delivered small pox and other diseases on them and they live much the way Tintin would have seen them in the 1920s. This luck VT traveler soon completely forgot the outside world as I was thrown into and immersed in their cultural, of a gentle sprit, dance and music. The Emberá dress me in a g-string painted me with traditional body paint with a natural sap dye called Jagua and allowed me enter and share their world. They shared with me theire knowledge of the rain forests abundant variety of flowers, butterflies, birds and wildlife during a rain forest walk. Because of my medical and background interest we stopped all along the walk where they shared the Emberá’s amazing botanical healing knowledge – most will be surprised to learn of their contributions to modern pharmaceuticals a native middle American yam is the source of the modern birth control pill for example . I had the chance to see the Emberá make baskets and watch as they made some poison for hunting from a very poisonous very small and very cute green and orange frog.
To get to the village I was paddled in a dugout canoe for about three hours a very peaceful way to spend a morning with lots of Birds along the way to admire.
To see about 50 more photos of the Embera people from this trip look at the site below.
Embera people from this trip look at.
I arriving at night in Panama City with the Embera people and rainforest in mind, it was exciting to arise with the sun to a coastline of beautiful skyscrapers
The muggy, hot capital of Panama is well spectacular, busy and very interesting. The city is really very compact with a 2 buck taxi fare taking you anywhere. The most interesting and photogenic area is the "old city built by the French", Casco Viejo. This part of Panama City is best described as crumbling French colonial architecture. But, it is really charming with flowers flowing from the balconies of brightly painted and tropically molded houses. Unesco’s declared it a world heritage site in the late 1990’s and has now become a kind of French quarter like in New Orleans a charming place to live so it is improving but “charming” poverty still remains clear for the world to see. All, this makes this place just filled with wonderful photos around every corner.
The most in your face foreign influence in Panama today is that of the USA. After only driving 10 minutes you run smack into the Canal Zone, previously US colonial territory in the very heart of Panama. The Canal Zone and the Panama were “given” back to Panama only in the last day of 1999.
The canal begins at Miraflores locks. I looked on as a huge US navy ship all in Gray on one side and a oil tanker on the other, glided through the gates into a space that looked barely wide enough to hold it. Teams of men and several small but impressively trains kicked into action like ants. It's all a slow pace rather than spectacular, but it's truly amazing.
Prior to this 20th century marvel, the only way across the continent was either via Cape Horn or trudging overland. I got a taste of the latter during a dugout and trek in the rainforest to see the embera indians.
- Pros:Indian culture wonderful
- Cons:Hot and steamy
- In a nutshell:beautiful place few tourist
After seeing the insperation here is the real picture. You can spend a few hours or a few weeks in the rain forest in... more travel advice
Oscar was my driver excellent English very nice family new and nice auto. will pick you up at airport and act as a guide... more travel advice
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