The Kuna of the San Blas Islands, Panama

The Kuna of the San Blas Islands, Panama

San Blas Islands are an archipelago of approximately 365
islets off the Caribbean Coast of Panama. To reach these pristine
lands you take a bus from
Panama City
followed by a speedboat out to sea, or you can sail
from Cartagena which takes a few days depending on the weather.
Tourists are only allowed on the islands for a certain number of
days each year.

About 50 of the islands are inhabited and home to indigenous
Kuna Indians. The Kuna follow a traditional way of life much like
their ancestors, making their livelihood by allowing tourists to
stay on the islands and by selling coconuts and fish to the
mainland and beyond.

After observing their way of life, I decided to document it. I
spent a few days in San Blas and the Kuna people were incredibly
hospitable, welcoming me into their homes, sharing their food with
me and letting me explore their magical haven. My days passed
hopping from one island to the next and discovering marine life,
while nights were spent eating fresh fish around camp fires and
sleeping in wooden beach huts.

Panama is beautiful, not only aesthetically, but in the simple
way of life lived by the people; I hope these images go some way to
capture that.

@maylavelle | may

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