These Islands are at Risk of Disappearing

Bocas del Toro, Panama
Bocas del Toro, Panama | © JAIROMAYA/Pixabay
Brittney Schering

The archipelago of more than 350 islands in the Caribbean Sea is known as San Blas Islands, a supremely popular destination in Panama. Home to the indigenous Guna tribe for hundreds of years, the entire cluster of islands is currently at risk of sinking within decades.

San Blas is known as Guna Yala to the natives who call it home, the tribe who won independence from the Panamanian government in 1925 following their staged revolution. The indigenous people, as a result, now operate under their own constitution and respective government, separate from the rest of the country.

Fishing boats

While they live on less than 100 of the San Blas Islands, they protect all of the more than 350 that unite to become San Blas. Large-scale developments do not exist here, nor do any modern builds.

The special sanctuary of San Blas Islands has been known to captivate tourists and locals alike. From the turquoise, crystal clear water to the palm-tree dotted beaches and soft-as-silk sand, there is a mesmerizing, completely uninterrupted view from island to island. In fact, the only buildings on San Blas are the small, basic huts for minimal shelter.

Isla Iguana, Panama

Over time, the Guna Yala has become more vulnerable as the reefs have slowly stripped away the protective barrier that once surrounded and supported the islands. The sea level, as a result, has increased at an accelerated speed. Also affecting the rapidity is poor resource management, leading to significant coastal erosion.

The future of San Blas Islands, as it stands currently, is in significant danger of disappearing to land under the sea within a matter of decades. The fate of the islands is no longer an “if” but a “when” the local, native, indigenous people will be forced to leave their home, the beloved San Blas Islands.

Culture Trips launched in 2011 with a simple yet passionate mission: to inspire people to go beyond their boundaries and experience what makes a place, its people and its culture special and meaningful. We are proud that, for more than a decade, millions like you have trusted our award-winning recommendations by people who deeply understand what makes places and communities so special.

Our immersive trips, led by Local Insiders, are once-in-a-lifetime experiences and an invitation to travel the world with like-minded explorers. Our Travel Experts are on hand to help you make perfect memories. All our Trips are suitable for both solo travelers, couples and friends who want to explore the world together.

All our travel guides are curated by the Culture Trip team working in tandem with local experts. From unique experiences to essential tips on how to make the most of your future travels, we’ve got you covered.

Culture Trip Spring Sale

Save up to $1,656 on our unique small-group trips! Limited spots.

X
close-ad
Edit article