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Panama Embera Village Tours: Understanding Ella Drua

Through Embera Village tours, you will discover Ella Drua—a small, 100 person Emberá-Wounaan  jungle village situated on the bank of the Gatún River. Its proximity to Panamá City makes it an ideal option for those looking for a total scenery change, without necessarily needing to embark on a long, tiring road trip or bus ride.

5.00 out of 5 based on 3 customer ratings
(3 customer reviews)

Per Person

Explore the Beauty of Ella Drua Through Embera Village Tours

How well do you know of Panama’s Embera Villages? Embark on a Embera Village tours package with us, as we bring you through the village to understand traditional Ella Drua music, dances, artisan work and food, as well as the diverse flora and fauna of the area. The traditional artisan goods of the Ella Drua include hand-woven baskets and masks made of natural fibers, vegetable ivory and rosewood carvings, and many accessories made from seeds, coconut, fibers and wood – their creative inspiration stems from the natural environment, so you will find many goods decorated with butterflies, birds and flowers.

There are several options available – The Embera Village tours have an excellent 3-hour guided tour of the community, or you can opt for the 1 Day 1 Night package, which is the tour plus lunch and dinner on the day of arrival, as well as breakfast the next morning.

If you want to stay longer at Ella Drua, the Embera Village tours offer a 2-night package that includes all the cultural presentations of the day trip, as well as a guided hike into the jungle, a visit to waterfalls, traditional story-telling in the evenings and plenty of time to relax around the village and river.


  • Get an understanding of traditional Ella Drua culture
  • Experience staying in Embera Village
  • Taste traditional cuisine of Ella Drua
  • Hike into the village of the jungle
  • Visit to the waterfalls
  • Swim in the village river

Tour Information

Duration: 3 hours of activities in the community, 1 hour each way from Panama City (overnight also possible)
Start/End location: Panama City, Panama
Availability: Year-round
Miscellaneous: Please note that the community must incur costs to prepare for the tour before it starts, which means all bookings are final. All bookings should also be made at least 72 hours in advance, in order to give the community enough time to prepare for your arrival.

Tour / Transport Options and Prices

Full day of activities with a community guide (Spanish only): $50 per person

What’s Included:

  • Get an understanding of traditional Ella Drua culture
  • Experience staying in Embera Village
  • Taste traditional cuisine of Ella Drua
  • Hike into the village of the jungle
  • Visit to the waterfalls
  • Swim in the village river

Add Overnight lodging + 3 meals in the community: $75 per person

  • For those that wish to stay the night, Ella Drua offers open, traditional palm thatched huts with mattresses, mosquito nets and a view of the river. Bathroom facilities (flush toilets and private showers) are located next to the hut.

Add Private roundtrip transportation from Panama City (same day): $100 for 2 people (consult at for larger groups)

Add Private roundtrip transportation from Panama City (return different day): $200 for 2 people (consult at for larger groups)

Add Private roundtrip transportation from Panama City + Bilingual guide / translator (English and Spanish): $145 for 2 people (consult at for larger groups)

What to Bring

  • Comfortable clothes and shoes

Important Notes

  • Why can’t you book this tour right now online? This is a small, community-run operation that does not do daily tours, so we always need to consult availability with them before accepting bookings. Email us at if you are interested in visiting Ella Drua – let us know how many people will be traveling, which date you are interested in, and which activities you would like included and we’ll get back to you with availability ASAP!
  • The village will cook all your meals for you if you stay in Ella Drua. They offer typical Panamanian food, including: fried fish, chicken, rice, lentils, beans, plantains, coffee, and lemon tea. There are also vegetarian options available, please contact us at if you would like to opt for the vegetarian option.
  • How to get there: You can take a public bus from Panama City to Ella Drua – it takes a little over an hour. Please email us at if you’re interested in taking public transport there and we can give you directions. (We don’t have directions on this page because the community would prefer that all travelers consult availability ahead of time before going)


Ella Drua Village, Panama

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Ella Drua Village, Panama 9.272696, -79.775365
  1. Rated 5 out of 5


    My time here was AMAZING! The people are so friendly, I felt like I was in living in The Jungle Book. The houses were beautiful and very traditional, it is truly something you have to see. The food was delicious, nothing like fresh fish and plantains from their own land. Last, the traditional ink that was painted on me was something I will never forget. Ella Drua is a MUST-SEE in Panama, a very unique & memory making trip. TE AMO.

  2. Rated 5 out of 5


    If you are like me and enjoy experiencing new places and new ways of seeing the world then Ella Drua is the place for you. To boot, this small indigenous community of approximately one hundred people is just a short drive from Panama City. Ella Drua offers an assortment of activities that fascinated me and my traveling partner: educational hikes through the jungle, canoe rides up and down the river, fishing lessons, countless games with the children, even learning how to open a coconut with a machete! (which, I was surprised to discover, is not as difficult as it sounds).

    At night the community performed beautiful traditional dances (which I gladly was able to join) and fed us delicious fresh-caught fish with patacones (fried green plantains, which were surprisingly good!). Ella Drua is nestled in one of the most beautiful, lush places I’ve ever seen. Imagine pausing during a hike to grab a banana off a tree! All around us were orange trees, palm trees, banana trees, and many others that I’ve since forgotten. The uphill hikes along a stream were totally worth the effort and the vistas along the river were breathtaking. Combine this with an incredibly happy and welcoming indigenous community, and Ella Drua is truly a special place.

    Sleeping outdoors under a raised pavilion inside a mosquito net was one of my favorite parts of the trip. It was so unique and fun to listen to the sounds of the cicadas, animals, and the embera language before falling asleep. If such a sleeping arrangement doesn’t fit your idea of fun, Ella Drua does offer day trips, which I can imagine are also very rewarding and come highly recommended. But I would allocate three days.

  3. Rated 5 out of 5


    I spent only a few days in Ella Drua and got to see so much. Every person I met was amazing, friendly, welcoming and eager to show me around. Besides the wonderful people it is set in one of the most beautiful backdrops you can imagine which made for great walks and exploring in the areas around the village. I also got to see the tourism group in beautiful dress and dance traditional dances which they taught me. It was an amazing trip and I would love to go back!

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What Happens After I Book?

After you book your experience, you will receive a confirmation email from us confirming that your payment went through. You will then be connected directly to the tour operator, in case you have any further questions. We are also happy to answer any questions about the tour, or travel in general in your country of destination.

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