Finding a paradise island to stay in San Blas (Guna Yala) is not that difficult, because you can choose out of different island sizes and facilities. It all just depends on what you are looking for. Just don’t expect five star hotel facilities in San Blas because the region is laidback and more likely to feel back to basic. We can recommend the following paradise islands.
The amazing paradise islands guide
The islands are listed in alphabetical order and not from good to bad. They all have different facilities to fulfill the need of any tourist. We suggest some places with the sign “Top Spot” that are the most fun to visit in our eyes.
Aguja (Icodub Island) *Top spot*
Crystal clear waters and a mystical coral reef surround the island of Aguja. The island offers great tourist facilities such as bathrooms, restaurants, electricity and hammocks. The island is located only 15 minutes from the mainland port and is therefore probably the most visited in San Blas. The place is amazing and sometimes a little bit crowded but don’t worry enough space to put your towels on the beach.
Ansuelo (Achuerdub Island)
Commonly referred to as Ansuelo Island is an amazing place to relax and enjoy the beautiful nature of San Blas. The island isn’t that popular with tourist since it isn’t offering many tourist facilities. Yet the place resembles peace, tranquility and has paradise beaches to enjoy throughout the day.
Banedub *Top spot*
Not far from the famous Isla Perro or Dog Island you find Isla Banedub. This places offers magical lodges on a tiny island surrounded by white sand beaches and crystal clear turquoise Caribbean water. The island also has a bar and campfire which attracts sailboat tourist at night. It is a fun place to stay and relax, truly a paradise island.
Cayos Holandeses is the most remote part of the San Blas archipelago and is located all the way in the East. The islands are the most pristine and untouched of the Guna Yala. You can only stay here in camping tents but the experience will be unforgettable. The islands nature and marine diversity is amazing and will blow your mind. Als je Nederlands bent kan je deze eilanden niet overslaan aangezien ze vernoemd zijn naar ons! Probeer een dagtour te boeken om deze prachtige keys te ontdekken.
Chichimei *Top spot*
One of the bigger islands on San Blas is Isla Chichimei. This island is one of the bigger islands in San Blas yet walking around only takes you up to 10 minutes. The island offers dormitories and private cabins. You get served breakfast, lunch and diner. Since the island is relatively big it is always possible to find a strip of sand that is totally empty of tourist. Perfect for your honeymoon!
One of the Islands that is the closest to the port to the mainland is El Porvenir. This Island servers as maritime customs and has a small airstrip on which you can fly from Panama City. The facilities on the island are private showers, bathrooms and electricity combined with beautiful white sand beaches and crystal clear water on one side of the island.
Franklin Island is located only 40 minutes by water taxi from the mainland port in Carti. This place offers excellent camping facilities and lodges to stay for the night. Don’t expect it to be luxuries but it is above average for the San Blas region. The facility offers electricity, bathrooms, volleyball – and basketball field. This all is surrounded by crystal clear water that is perfect for snorkeling.
Isla Perro / Dog Island *#1 Top spot*
Probably the most famous paradise island in San Blas is Isla Perro or Dog Island. This island serves most tourist imagination of how a paradise island should look like. The island offers camping facilities to stay for the night and a small restaurant/bar. Yet, the most exciting thing on the island is the old gunboat wreck that is located in front of the main beach. This wreck is perfect for snorkeling and attracts a great marine biodiversity. Snorkeling, beaching, volleyball and relaxing is the way to go on Isla Perro. The island is located in the Lemon Keys around 40 minutes away from the mainland port.
One of the private islands in San Blas is Kikirdub. This island is located near the Wichubwala community and offers relaxing and comfort. It has a little beach, restaurant, and bar and is close to the mainland. The hotel/guesthouse is one of the most luxuries places to stay in San Blas. It offers clean beds, large rooms, bar, restaurant and beautiful Guna art.
One of the communities in San Blas is the Wichubuala community. They offer a hotel on their island Nadi. This hotel offers daily tours to different islands such as Dog Island. Close to the main port but there are no beaches! If you want to learn more about the Gunas and their culture and traditions this is the place to be.
Nalu Nega offers great cabanas to stay in with comfortable beds and showers. The island is well developed and offers breakfast, lunch and dinner. You can book various tours from the island since there is not much beach to enjoy.
Senidup *Top spot*
If you like to party and chill out on a tropical paradise the island of Senidup is probably the best place to go in San Blas. This island offers a great party atmosphere and attracts many young/backpacker travelers. Additionally, the island facilities are great since they have electricity, showers, shared bathrooms, restaurant, bar and a volleyball field on the beach. They also offer cheap trips to Dog Island, which is the must visit island in San Blas.
Some other island in the archipelago
There are plenty more island in the San Blas archipelago on which you visit or stay on for the night. From West to East these islands are; Aggwadargana, Wagsagiadup, Wisedup, Miradup, Miria Diadup, Esmeddup, Niagalubir, Ogob Bugip, Sibadup, Wegodup, Ugubsidup, Goledup, Galubir, Birdiadup, Inabiadup, Gwindup and diadup. We recommend you ask local gunas about them, they can inform you if the island is open to visit or closed at the time being.