“I wanted freedom, open air, adventure. I found it on the sea.” ― Alain Gerbault, Sailor
For travellers looking for something a little different, authentic, with a little adventure, yet still comfortable and affordable.
Let me introduce you to this brilliant, not so well known alternative route to get you from Panama to Colombia. It's an awesome island hopping sailing adventure on a classic yacht named Ave Maria. This beautiful, picturesque, classic sailboat is plying the route between with regular departures from either Cartagena or Portobelo.
Just one of the gorgous beaches of San Blas
Captain Paul and his Chef partner Sindry welcomed myself and another 9 travellers aboard for this 5 night adventure in paradise with an ice cold beverage. Then preceded to run us through the hows, why and where's of the trip, the boat and life onboard. Once we were all organised and comfortable they raised the anchor and we set sail. Off into a star filled night sky on a calm Caribbean Sea.
Having explored the region continuously for the past 12 years. The crew know the area very well and it was obvious. As we were taken to pristine coral reefs and shipwrecks to snorkel, explore and enjoy. All felt privileged to visiting the best uninhabited tropical islands in the archipelago de San Blas, Panama with their white sandy, coconut palm lined beaches and calm azure waters. An absolutely brilliant experience.
An underwater wonderland
One of the trips highlight was the 3 full days spent visiting the islands of San Blas. Every morning the captain raised anchor shortly after breakfast and set sail again for the next island paradise which was always close by. At each of the new locations Captain Paul explained the lay of the reefs and gave directions to the best areas of coral for us to explore and imerse ourselves in the fabulous underwater wonderland. I was amazed by the diversity of the coral and life that i saw during these snorkeling expeditions. Fond memories which I am sure will stay with me forever.
The waters edge in San Blas
Our chef Sindry provided a fabulous menu of healthy and varied meals designed specifically to fit with the activities of the day. All prepared with much consideration, from the best local ingredients and catering for most dietary requirements. Including a sensational beach barbeque and bonfire. Regarded as a fabulous bonus by all.
Sunset San Blas style.
If your planning to backpack through Central America and South America or looking for a short break jump aboard Ave Maria and enjoy this journey, a San Blas Adventure.
Paradise, an island in San Blas, Panama.
Whether travelling from Colombia to Panama or Panama to Colombia this is the best option available to cross the remote border and explore this route following a path less travelled.
Sure you could fly.
Though that's simply just boring.
Or you could take a speedboat.
But in reality what they call speedboats are actually open boats with a wooden bench seat and nothing more. Wet and uncomfortable beyond belief, kind of dodgy and definitely not safe.
Neither of the abovementioned options can compare to the brilliant and enjoyable journey you will experience on the Ave Maria.
Conclusion: Life on a sailboat in the Caribbean is awesome!
© 2020 Palaides Light
letstalk1 on May 28, 2020: