The Embera Native Experience


This special journey will bring you to a a local Embera village on the Chagres River for a unique peek into the lives of one of Panama’s 7 recognized indigenous tribes. The Embera people have populated the Choco region of western Colombia and the Darien region of eastern Panama for centuries, long before Spanish colonization. Today over 30,000 Embera inhabit Panama; while most still live in the Darien region, some communities have migrated to Chagres National Park between Panama City and Colon, allowing for more accessibility for tourism.

Your adventure will begin with a 1-1.5-hour drive into the Panamanian jungle. From here, you will take an Embera dugout canoe ride down the Chagres River, observing the lush flora and fauna of this virgin rainforest along the way. Look out for a great variety of birds, turtles, caiman, monkeys, sloths, and more. Welcomed at the pier by members of the community, you will have the rare opportunity to interact with the Embera natives and learn more about their traditions, music, homes, typical dances, native dress, and overall way of life. They are proud of their history and culture and open to sharing.

Also enjoy a typical native lunch prepared by the Embera women, consisting of catch of the day, fried plantains and rice. You will also have time to buy handcrafted souvenirs (please bring small change for purchases) to support the community.



Approximately 8-10 hours.


Transportation from and to the hotel, boat ride, donation to the Embera, guide and lunch.


Please inquire

Please note that any tour departing from Gamboa or Playa Bonita hotels, or hotels near the airports will have a total surcharge of $70 plus 7% tax.


We will pick you up at your hotel in the city at approximately 8:00 am.



Comfortable clothing, towel, bathing suit, good traction shoes and/or water shoes, bug spray, sunglasses, camera, hat and sunscreen. Light raincoat on rainy season (Apr-Nov). Cash and small change for souvenirs.


The following information is a Panama tipping guide:

  • Shuttle Driver $ 2.00 per person, per day.
  • Sightseeing tour driver $ 5.00 per person, per day.
  • Tour guide $ 10.00 per person, per day.
  • Tour boat driver $ 5.00 per person, per day.
  • Bellboys and airports $ 1.00 per bag.
  • Waiter / a restaurant 10% – 15%.