About Panama Travel
Anton Valley: Known for its square trees, the valley is the only place in the world where this occurs. The valley is located within the crater of the second largest inhabited dormant volcano in the world. The cooler climate is a pleasant change from the heat and humidity of the city and on warm days refreshing breezes rush down from the surrounding hills. The crater stands at about 600 meters/1,968 feet above sea level while all around are mountains that range from about 800 meters/2,650 feet to about 1,000 meters/3,281 feet. The most popular mountain is the Sleeping Indian Girl. From certain viewpoints, the mountain’s outline resembles a girl lying on her back gazing at the skies. According to legend, an Indian princess wandered the mountains and died in disgrace after her lover committed suicide. Travelers can hike the mountain trails, take a dip in pools beneath cascading waterfalls, visit the Piedra El Sapo, a rock with carvings of toads and discover abundant flora including wild orchids and unusual flowers. El Chorro Macho Waterfall is 35 meters/115 feet tall within the boundaries of an ecological refuge. Here, too, is a zip line canopy ride across El Macho.
Chiriquí Highlands: Chiriqui Province in western Panama, near Costa Rica, encompasses primary forests that harbor orchids and unique endemic wildlife, including the fabled resplendent Quetzal. Indian cultures, coffee plantations, hiking and horseback riding are here to be experienced. David is the provincial capital city and offers excellent shopping. Chiriqui Province is known for rafting and kayaking adventures, including Class Five rapids.
Colon: On the Caribbean side, Panama Canal transits start and end here. Highlights include the San Lorenzo and Portobello fortresses, the state-of-the art cruise port and the largest Free Trade Zone outside Hong Kong. This province not only offers historical sites and shopping, it is also a perfect place for nature activities such as snorkeling, diving and rainforest hiking within world-class birding areas. It is a relaxing spot to enjoy the Caribbean atmosphere. Colon province features the Panama Railroad and the lush tropical Isla Grande just off the coast.
Darien: Located in the most remote province of Panama, Darien is surrounded by forests teeming with a large diversity of mammals, frogs, insects and plants. A tented camp here offers a menu of diverse activities that include visiting local towns, traveling the rivers by dugout canoe, and a canopy tour. There is also the opportunity to visit an Embera village, one of the indigenous groups that live in eastern Panama to learn about their culture, the history of the village, their traditions, food, dress and dance. The list of wildlife in the forest includes many varieties of herons, egrets and hawks as well as ibis, owls, American crocodile, iguana, white-faced Capuchin monkeys and howler monkeys. Hiking, horseback riding, canoeing all yield plenty of wildlife sightings. Darien offers guests a range of opportunities to reconnect with nature.
Panama Canal & Cruise Between The Seas: The earliest mention of a canal through Panama dates to 1534 when the king of Spain commissioned a survey to discover a shorter route between Spain and Peru. But it took 349 years before the first unsuccessful efforts began. The 82-kilometer/51-mile canal was completed in 1913, and it remains a vital link in world shipping. The seven-day Cruise Between the Seas explores the traditional Embera culture, as well as the wildlife and the ecosystems of the region, and includes a passage through the canal.
Panama City: Founded in 1517, the city has long been an international crossroads. It was the first city built on the Pacific Coast of the Americas by the Spanish. The thriving business district includes shops, fine restaurants and lively nightclubs strung along the beautiful bay. The Spanish architectural influence is found in the 17thcentury convents and churches such as the Church of the Golden Altar. In addition to the famed canal, other sights include the original dungeons, a French monument to the 22,000 workers who died building the canal, and the Panama Canal Museum. The Amador Causeway connects three small islands that also have fine restaurants, bike and walking paths, a Smithsonian Institute research aquarium and a marina. The thriving business district includes shops, restaurants and lively nightclubs strung along the beautiful bay.
Suggested Panama Tour Itinerary
Day 1: Panama City, Panama
Founded in 1517, the city has long been an international crossroads.
Day 2: Panama City
Panama City is a modern metropolis of skyscrapers as well as historical sights and one of the most famous canals in the world.
Day 3: Panama City / Darien
In the most remote province of Panama, the forest is a thriving ecosystem teeming with mammals, frogs, insects, birds and plants.
Days 4-6: Darien
This natural paradise offers abundant outdoor activities including excellent wildlife viewing, horseback explorations of farms lands and hikes to waterfalls.
Day 7: Darien / Panama City
Panama’s thriving business district includes shops, restaurants and lively nightclubs strung along the beautiful bay.
Day 8: Panama City / Alton Valley / Panama City
Alton Valley is the only place in the world to find square-trunked trees.
Day 9: Panama City / Depart
Custom Travel Options
Bocas del Toro (3 days)
Accessible by water taxis and private boats, the islands present an array of nature-based activities including jungle hikes, kayaking and scuba diving.
Chiriquí Highlands (3 days)
The highlands are noted for indigenous Indian cultures, bird-watching, horseback riding, whitewater rafting and rainforest hikes.
Colon (3 days)
Colon is home to historic San Lorenzo and Portobello fortresses, a state-of-the-art cruise port, and the largest free trade zone outside of Hong Kong.
Panama Canal / Cruise Between the Seas (7 days)
This cruise explores the world of the Embera Indians, and the endemic wildlife and the ecosystems of the region.
Land price, per person, double occupancy: Approx. $500 - $700 per day.