I got to Panama on the Holland American ship m/s Zuiderman; I got to the Embera village by motorized dugout. What a contrast, both in terms of life style and mode of transportation.
The Embra are semi-nomadic, indigenous people who even in 2014 are retaining many of their old ways and customs.
The visited village is located on a river in the rain forest in Darien Province in Panama, reachable only by dugout canoe. Even with an outboard motor pushing the canoe, it took us at an hour to reach the village. The canoe leaked a bit and the seats were narrow wooden slats, not very comfortable, but I would make the trip again in a heart beat.
If you ever have the opportunity to visit this or another Embera village, be sure to do so. The day I spent in the village was unlike any other experience I have had.
Rather than write a long description of the village, I encourage you to look at this short video. It gives you a very good idea what the trip and visit are like.
The Embera people have their own language but are required by the government to learn Spanish. If you can speak even a little Spanish the residents will enjoy talking with you. I had a good conversation with the chief and one of the people; they enjoyed it as much as I did.
The only bathroom facilities at the village for visitors is a latrine. A simple meal was served of fruit and fish.
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