Sailors pay lots of money to obtain permission to cruise Kuna Yala.  One of these permits is supposed to go directly to the Kuna people, but in some islands, Kuna became rude or aggressive when sailors refused to pay an additional tax to enjoy the beaches.  The issue lies with the disturbing fact that these Kuna claim they never receive any money or benefits from the entry taxes sailors pay.  However, some of these additional charges have become relatively high and more numerous, and with the lack of a bank or ATM in Kuna Yala, sailors arrive with limited cash.  This means we spend less on the things they make and sell, like Molas and bead jewelry. 

Fair use of land, sea, and beaches, are issues we will be dealing with throughout our journey.

Give us your thoughts

Do you think it is okay to charge people an unofficially-recognized tax to enjoy your beach if they have already paid one?
Do you think it would be okay, considering it is your land and you do not receive payment or benefits from the first tax?

Send Meredith and Justin a message