Things to do in Panama when you can Travel Again

El Mercado del Marisco

The Mercado de Mariscos is the city fish market, open for business to local restaurants and the public every day except the 3rd Monday of each month when it is closed completely for thorough cleaning. It’s the best place to buy fresh fish in Panama City – everything from tuna to snapper to lobster to octopus – or ceviche to go from one of the many vendors. It’s bustling with energy as local shoppers mingle with tourists to inspect the day’s catch.

On the outside of the market you find numerous small stalls selling Ceviche (a Panamanian specialty made with fish cured in lemon juice) and some other typical seafood dishes. Join the crowds for lunch with cup of your favorite type of fresh cold Ceviche or seafood cocktail, or head upstairs to the casual restaurant where you get a variety of typical Panamanian seafood dishes.

Take your time to taste the treasures of Panama’s oceans (some scholars even say that the word “Panama” originally meant “abundance of fish”), have a look around, and feel that you have now really arrived in Panama.

We also want to share on this post our commitment towards sustainable fishing. As a member of the Panamanian Foundation for Sustainable Tourism (www.aptso.org) and in partnership with MARVIVA we support the local fishermen in their efforts to supports their families and our conserve our oceans.

Educational Tours in the Tropics – Panama

Panama’s incredibly culture, history and diversity makes it a paradise for academic and educational tours.

Despite its small size, Panama is one of the most biodiverse places in the world with more plant species than in all of Europe. Our academic expeditions gives you in-depth insights of the natural history and biodiversity of Panama by visiting tropical rainforests, cloud forests, wetlands, mangrove forests and volcanic mountain ranges.

By about 3 million years ago, an isthmus, narrow strip of land with water on either side, had formed connecting North and South America. The formation of the Isthmus of Panama also played a major role in biodiversity, making it easier for animals and plants to migrate between the continents. For instance, in North America today, the opossum, armadillo, and porcupine all trace back to ancestors that came across the land bridge from South America. Likewise, the ancestors of bears, cats, dogs, horses, llamas, and raccoons all made the trek south across the isthmus.

But there is so much more in Panama, as you will discover on this unique academic adventure. Explore the cosmopolitan and vibrant Panama City, learn about the history of the Panama Canal and hike the camino de cruces tail, originally used in the 16th and 17th centuries by Spanish plunderers to haul gold from Peru by mule across the Isthmus of Panama on its way to Spain. You will also discover unique wildlife in lowlands and highlands and depending on your program, you can support the efforts of local biologist by helping with tropical surveys, You will also learn about unique ethnic groups by visiting local indigenous communities.

Please, contact us at annie@ecocircuitos.com for details on different programs.

Did you know? Smithsonian biologists were invited to Panama in 1910 during the construction of the Panama Canal. Their surveys of Panama’s flora and fauna were the first steps toward creating a world-class platform for research in the tropics. As a narrow land bridge that separates two oceans and connects the biodiversity of two continents, Panama’s rich ecosystems promises to keep researchers busy for another hundred years.

Discover Azuero Peninsula: the Folkloric path

Visit the idyllic Peninsula de Azuero with its year-round dry weather and laid-back lifestyle. Dive into the authentic culture of this region, which feels isolated from modern Panama, explore its colorful traditions, tasty specialties, abundant wildlife, and natural beauties, including the Sarigua dessert.

EcoCircuitos’ Azuero program starts just after a short, direct flight from Panama City, with first-hand experience of the rich culture and diverse wildlife of the Peninsula. Experience the manufacturing process of producing Panamanian rum and have a taste of the local liquors Seco and rum. See the extraction of salt from the Pacific Ocean; visit the production of handmade clay pottery, and learn how the famous La Arena bread is baked. The basic program will furthermore take you on a boat ride to the idyllic island of Isla Iguana Wildlife Refuge, with its mangrove forests, pristine white-sanded beaches, crystal waters, and colorful coral reefs. Also check our Folkloric path for a more in deep experience.

Keep on exploring the facets of charming Azuero with joining our various extension tours: Surf on laid-back Playa Venao, watch the large variety of birds at Playa Aguillito, the nesting turtles of pristine Isla Canas or join adventurous canopy zipline tours over the treetops of the forest.

This is an ideal program for a StopOver in Panama. Contact us for more information: annie@ecocircuitos.com

Family Fun Adventures

This fun-filled trip is perfect for families who are ready to start an exciting adventure holiday in the tropics. Explore the natural beauties of Panama together with your whole family and keep an eye out for wild animals with your fun guide. Get ready for the vacation of the year!

Experience the facets of the Panama Canal in this great itinerary combining the history of this amazing feat of human engineering with the biodiversity of its lush rainforest surroundings in the Soberania National Park. Our guides are specialists trained to provide in-depth insights and understandings in their field, from ornithology, botany, and herpetology to history, culture and traditions. These understandings foster unforgettable travel experiences, as well as responsible encounters between travelers and nature, animals and local people.

On this unique adventure you will visit the Atlantic locks and the UNESCO site in Portobello and San Lorenzo, a magnificent example of 17th- and 18th-century military architecture, these Panamanian forts on the Caribbean coast form part of the defense system built by the Spanish Crown to protect transatlantic trade. What an unforgettable adventure for families! Recreate the real Pirates of the Caribbean! 

Educational Travel in Panama

In today’s world where a good education is a key to success, it is important to offer the students experiences abroad.  An academic travel can impact the participants beyond the fun and adventure.   Below 10 benefits that students gain from educational travel from Dr Wendy Amato Ph.D and take it from World Strides.

  1. Better Academic Performance – On an educational tour, students get to experience different styles of teaching and see a new side to their subject of study. When able to see, touch and smell the very things they have learned about in books, students return to the classroom with a deeper connection and greater motivation for their studies.
  2. A Global Perspective – Unfamiliarity and separation from home are great incubators for thought. New experiences will question one’s preconceived ideas. The enriching experience of educational travel encourages students to expand their world view, witness a new way of life and better understand people, history and culture.
  3. Confidence – Living for any amount of time in a culture that’s different from home can help prepare students for the future in ways more profound than any camp or holiday can. Overcoming challenges while traveling help students grow confidence and prepare them for life’s obstacles.
  4. Grit – Travelling away from the comfort of friends, family and familiar surroundings is tough. But doing it shows that a person is interested enough in the rest of the world, and confident enough to venture out and discover other parts of the world. This is a character trait that’s very appealing to employers.
  5. Networking – Travel provides students with a global network of contacts and references. Plus, instead of relying on others’ opinions, travelers establish perspective, confidence, and conviction that make it easier to gain the respect of others.
  6. Growth & Independence – While away from home and the ease of a regular support system, students have opportunities to see what they are capable of accomplishing by themselves. Travelling allows students to develop themselves in ways that can’t be achieved without stepping outside of their comfort zone, becoming more mature, independent and self-aware.
  7. Individuality – Travel provides experiences to define a person’s place and purpose and establishes lifelong values and priorities.
  8. Career Opportunities – Employers view students that have traveled as well-rounded as they have shown not only a commitment to their education but a confidence to venture out and discover new things as well as their ability to adapt to new situations.
  9. Appreciation – Getting away from home is also a chance to allow a student to realize what they miss most. Experiencing another place and culture is an opportunity to appreciate what they already have and realize the importance of the little things that often go unnoticed.
  10. New Friends – Cultural immersion through travels can also help break down language barriers and open new channels of lifelong communication. Exploring a new place opens doors to establish new friendships and relationships that never would have been acquired without traveling.

For more information about our educational tours, contact us at annie@ecocircuitos.com

Study Abroad in Panama, The Isthmus that Changed the World

Despite its small size, Panama is one of the most biodiverse places in the world with more plant species than in all of Europe.  In vast contrast to the modern lifestyle of Panama City, large parts of the countryside are to a large extent still undeveloped. Deep in the rainforests, hidden in the highlands and cast-away on tiny little islands, there are unique cultures in Panama, who keep their traditions and customs and some living in autonomous regions. On our academic programs you will dive into our cultures and explore our amazing Isthmus.

EcoCircuitos Tour Operator has been conducting academic travel programs in Panama since 2003 promoting Adventure, Conservation and Education with different international partners as Hannover College, who visited recently to learn about Panamanian music, folk craft, dance as they meet with artisans working to preserve the local culture in Guararé, Panamá.

The variety of outdoor and cultural activities provides endless possibilities to experience academic programs in panama.  Nature lovers will find challenges on the various trails winding through mountains, rain forests, and indigenous communities. The spectacular  coastline support an underwater ecology and a diverse landscape. While our unique cultural heritage will transport to ancient times.  The most cosmopolitan capital in Central America will offer you a wide variety of attractions and the unique colonial neighborhood Casco Viejo.

For more information on our academic programs, please contact Annie Young at annie@ecocircuitos.com

 

 

 

 

 

Study Abroad in Panama

Despite its small size, Panama is one of the most biodiverse places in the world with more plant species than in all of Europe. Our academic tours gives you in-depth insights of the natural history and biodiversity of Panama by visiting tropical rainforests, cloud forests, wetlands, mangrove forests and volcanic mountain ranges.

EcoCircuitos Panama  is an qualified, in-country partner for high schoolsmiddle schools, and academic travel groups that want to provide a unique and authentic worldwide travel experience for their students.  Our office team and naturalist and history guides will work side-by-side with teachers, student leaders, high schools and universities to plan, organize, and lead student adventure programs through Panama.

EcoCircuitos Panama has been running Academic and Adventure travel since 2003 and we have the the experience, valuable relationships with the best partners in town.  We offer local knowledge and expertise on how to discover the Isthmus that changed the world.

Our Motto:  Adventure, Conservation and Education!

Video by Hannover College Indiana students on their trip to Panama with us in May, 2018

Academic Travel in Panama: The Isthmus that Changed the world

Recently the Hanover College students participated on a Cross-Cultural Communication tour in Panama City, where they learn about Panamanian history and its culturally diverse society.   EcoCircuitos Panama organize the program under our motto:  Adventure, Conservation and Education.

In the video the EcoCircuitos Tour guide and staff leading the tour on an amazing week where history, interpretation, new discoveries, new friends and fun where part of the daily activities.

 

Video courtesy of Hannover Students.

 

Contact us if you are interested in Academic and Educational Travel adventures and want your students to gain a deeper understanding of Panama’s history, ecological and environmental culture.   For details:  annie@ecocircuitos.com

ATTA, EcoCircuitos & Grayl to reduce use of plastic bottle pollution

“One million plastic bottles are purchased every minute, yet in the developing world, only two percent of plastic is recycled. As an industry, we must act together to free ourselves from our dependency on the single-use plastics that are choking our natural resources and threatening the very places in which our industry thrives,” said GRAYL CEO Andrew Weber.

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This new initiative is designed to challenge adventure travel companies to become part of the solution to curb global single-use plastic pollution. “We’re thrilled to work with GRAYL as its products and goals align with a cause the ATTA cares about — the reduction of single-use plastic waste in the environment,” said Shannon Stowell, CEO of the ATTA. “GRAYL has changed the way I personally consume water, both in outdoor recreation and during travel experiences. I no longer use single-use plastic water bottles. I now make my own clean water in hotels, airports, and even mountain streams. Having tested it extensively in Asia and South America, I can attest that GRAYL is packable, easy to use, convenient, and has absolutely kept me healthy!”

EcoCircuitos has joined the efforts and we will provide our clients with an exclusive discount code for the packing list and you will receive 20%off their order at checkout when shopping at http://www.TheGrayl.com

This is one of the best purifiers + filter bottles, fast and easy to use, and less than 15 seconds you will have clean and safe water to drink!

If you are a client, ask for the code and will receive a great discount on this amazing bottle!

Join us and help reduce the plastic by just purchasing this bottle before your trip.

For more information contact annie@ecocircuitos.com

 

 

 

My first wildlife experience in Soberania National Park with Ecocircuitos

By Maelle Denoual

True nature lover, I was chosen to work as an intern for 5 months in Ecocircuitos’ tour operator and it’s the first time for me in Panama. I’m French and I’ve never been further than Morocco. You can imagine how excited I was to know that I will discover a new land and such amazing country like Panama. And here I am!

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A week ago, during my first week of internship, I had the opportunity to experience, with two other clients, the hiking tour at Soberania National Park in the company of the very competent and smiley naturalist guides of the company named Fabio.

It was once again my first exploration of a rainforest and it was amazing! This tour offers an incredible opportunity for wildlife observation and birdwatching. In fact, while we were walking just at the park’s entrance, it didn’t take long before we could hear birdsongs and feel the absolutely unique atmosphere of wilderness. I felt in another world for 2 hours. Beautiful and colorful birds but also huge butterflies were flying from time to time above our head. Every time we saw an animal or a bird, Fabio was there to tell us what kind of specimen it was and inform us more about it. We have even seen a baby anteater on the side of the trail. Actually, we were very lucky because it’s not common to see one so close. I have learned so much during this hiking tour and it wasn’t exhausting but mostly enjoyable.

After the exploration of the lush forest, Fabio explained that our adventure is not finished.  We were heading to a jungle-adventure expedition across the Gatun Lake in the Panama Canal. Once aboard, we started the tour searching for more wildlife around the rainforest-covered islands. And we were lucky again because we could see monkeys having a nap on trees, many water birds, 2 big green iguanas, a sloth and a crocodile! Also, it was so impressive to see giant cargos on the canal transiting the waterway few meters away from us…I couldn’t believe that I was on the renowned Panama Canal that everybody talks about. I was thrilled!

That day was a very enriching experience thanks to these 2 different ways to discover nature and I felt very amazed by the considerable diversity of fauna and flora which offers Panama. I strongly recommend EcoCircuitos’ tours to everyone who loves ecotourism and want to visit Panama.

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EcoCircuitos practices responsible tourism and follow the standards of leave no trace and Travelers Against Plastics.  We encourage all our clients to bring their own bottle and change the way you travel.  For more information on this tours and others, please contact us at info@ecocircuitos.com