5 nm Over to Porvenir to Check In

We got up early on Monday, November 10th. We wanted to go over to the island town of Porvenir, where the Port Captain's office is, to check in with the Kuna Comarca, but we did not want to spend the night there, so we wanted as much time as possible to get to our next anchorage after checking in. Also, I had volunteered to run the daily SSB "Panama Connection Net" at 8:30 am, and so wanted to be at anchor in Porvenir well before the net was to start.

Therefore, we got up at 5:30 am, and were underway by 6:00 am. It is a fairly short jaunt, about 5 miles, to Porvenir, so we got there about 7-7:15 am and dropped the hook just off the main dock, in view of the Port Captain's office. We had heard that the office opens early, so we promptly got the dinghy ready to go and went into shore. There are only 4-5 buildings on the island, so it wasn't hard to find the office.

We got there and met first with Ulbaldino, the Kuna representative, who quickly filled out the Comarca check-in form and collected $24 from us. It is $20 for the boat, and $2/person for a renewable one month permit to visit the San Blas Islands. Five minutes later, we met Alexi, the Port Captain, who took our "local Zarpe" that we had gotten in Colon, which specified that we would be transiting from Colon to Porvenir. All in all, it was one of the nicest official office visits we have had in Panama. In a few short minutes we were out, took a few photos of Porvenir, and were back on RHAPSODY by 8:00 am, in plenty of time to do the net.

After the net was over, we pulled up the anchor and pretty much retraced our route back to the east, passing the Lemon Cays and making for the Holandes Cays.