We visited an Embera Village on the Gatun River. The village was about 20 minutes by dugout canoe from the highway. The village had 47 residents. The village medicine man took us on a tour of the village and pointed out various medicinal plants that they used. We also visited the village school. They cooked a lunch of tilapia, chicken and "Chinese" plantains (white when cooked rather than yellow) for us. After lunch, the men and the women put on several dances important to their culture. We then had an opportunity to view and purchase various crafts that they had made or that their relations in the Darien had made. We saw many birds, spider monkeys, iguanas, and a two toed sloth as we traveled along the river.
We went on this tour with Rudy of Rudy's Tours. Rudy is a great guide, speaks very good English (as well as Spanish, German, and Italian), and is very knowledgeable about Panama. He is a very safe driver and his vehicles are very nice. Rudy's wife Patty makes all of the arrangements for the tours and the price of the tours includes all entry fees.
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