Every child dreams about exploring jungles, admiring wild animals, and being an authentic adventurer. With EcoCircuitos Panama and our preferred partners, you can enjoy an exciting family vacation. We offer brand-new family experiences, developed through the eyes of our children. Our favorite adventure starts with a biking tour at the promenade of Panama City, after trying exotic ice-cream flavors in the colorful and Old Town. We will also visit the Caribbean side, where we will discover the Portobelo and San Lorenzo forts and will learn about the real Pirates of the Caribbean. Families turn into real explorers when spotting howler monkeys, unique birds as the Toucan, and crocodiles while learning about the ecosystems of the tropical rainforest on board of a jungle boat. Discover why Panama is the Isthmus that changed the world. Click here!
Take advantage of the COPA Stopover and explore one of Panama’s best kept secrets: The Gulf of Chiriqui.
Day 01: From Tocumen International Airport, take a flight to the capital of Chiriqui, David. From here, head to the small fishing town of Boca Chica, on the Gulf of Chiriqui. The natural beauty of this place is astounding, and still unknown. Check in to a charming boutique hotel and relax.
Day 02: The Gulf of Chiriqui is known for its amazing wildlife and stunning natural beauty. Certainly, a must is to explore part of this! Accompanied by a local captain, sail out and visit some of the islands, feel the warm tropical breeze and the sand between your toes. Go snorkeling, beach combing and enjoy a romantic picnic lunch.
Day 03: Enjoy a morning at leisure. In the afternoon sail slowly through the mangroves along the tranquil river as you observe a variety of birds and other present wildlife. This unique ecosystem is often under looked, but it’s a key environment for many species, whether they are under the ocean or soaring the skies. Finish off with a drink and appreciate the sunset.
Day 04: Unfortunately, your stay has come to an end. But hopefully, you’ll come back soon to discover more of what Panama has to offer. Check out, and head back to David for your flight back to Panama City.
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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!
The Rio Grande Basin of the Coclé region (a province of central Panama on the nation’s southern coast) has become famous in recent years for the discovery of extraordinary remains exhibiting the life and customs of pre-Columbian societies in the Neotropics. The El Caño Archeological Park, located close to Rio Grande, is of particular importance. In 2009, archeologists discovered the tomb of an important Coclé warrior buried with treasures such as breastplates, bracelets, belts, and ear sticks made of gold and copper, stone and bone. The artifacts found were so spectacular that an article in National Geographic Magazine (2012) entitled “The Golden Chiefs of Panama” describe El Caño and its surrounding areas as “Panama Valley of the Kings”. Since that time many more tombs have been identified and continue to be excavated.
PANAMA RAINFOREST HIKING
Tranquilo Bay’s grounds include over 200 acres with several kilometers of forested trails. Many of Isla Bastimentos favorite birds, monkeys, sloths, iguanas, lizards, insects and frogs live here.
Possible bird sightings may include: multiple raptors, Montezuma Oropendolas, Red-lored Parrots, hummingbirds, five species of kingfishers, Green Ibis, woodpeckers, honeycreepers, tanagers, pigeons, antbirds, manakins, seedeaters, herons, and in-season, Three-wattled Bellbirds.
Wildlife sightings may include: White-faced Capuchins, three and two-toed sloths, green iguanas, basilisk lizards, butterflies and poison dart frogs
CLIMB UP – LOOK AROUND
The wildlife and views from the tower are incredible, but the natural history lesson alone is worth the climb. All life zones known to the tropics, from the mountains to the coral reefs below the ocean’s surface are visible from the Canopy Tower. This vantage point above the forest’s canopy gives you a bird’s-eye view of the entire archipelago.
KAYAKING THE CARIBBEAN
The kayaking part of the tour departs from Tranquilo Bay’s comfortable facility. Our our staff will handle the preparation, maintenance and portage of the equipment. We provide snorkel gear for the tour so you may explore the underwater garden that includes tropical fish and vibrant coral reefs. All you have to do is paddle and absorb the breath-taking scenery.
For those new to kayaking, we will give you a lesson to familiarize you with the equipment and techniques to prepare you for your adventure.
SNORKELING THE CARIBBEAN BLUE
Your snorkeling adventure covers several ecosystems. Kayak snorkeling from Tranquilo Bay places you within the marine park. You explore different types of coral formations and marine habitat during your time underwater.
This unique adventure is for families, couples and small groups of 8 people maximum. The tour leaves only on Wednesdays and Thursdays. The program includes boat transfer from Bocas del Toro Island, bilingual guide, lunch at the reserve and activities. For reservations: click here
During the Adventure Week Panama this past May, the participants from different Continents discover why Panama became the Isthmus that changed the world and a paradise for the outdoor travelers.
The explorers discover a diverse destination filled with natural and cultural beauty and with an incredible history to share with the rest of the world. Panama surprises the adventure travelers for the cosmopolitan capital, the legends of Pirates and Conquistadores that fought for the treasures of the Americas, amazing close national parks and trails, good adventures, unique wildlife and a superb gastronomy.
Through kayak, trekking, amazing gastronomic fests, hikes with naturalist guides, snorkeling, boutique hotels and wildlife observation, Panama became the place where friends from around the world united for one week. We all enjoyed this adventure and we hope to continue receiving new friends from the Adventure Travel Association.
Approximately two miles from the Panama City center are found the archeological compound of the first city of Panama known as “Panama La Vieja” or Old Panama, founded in 1519 by Pedrarias Davila. Fragments of walls and arches stand in an open park, recalling the splendor of the Spaniard’s first settlement on the Pacific Ocean. From here, expeditions were mounted to conquer the Inca Empire of South America. All of the wealth from Peru and Chile flowed to Spain through Old Panama. Not surprisingly, the enormous quantities of gold attracted pirates like sharks to Panama’s water. When Henry Morgan looted the city in 1671, Panama’s governor ordered the powder magazine burned, and the whole city went up in flames. the capital was moved two miles to the west, and present-day Panama city was founded in 1673. The most impressive structures remaining are the cathedral, that you can climb and have an amazing view of the City and market. This is one of the spots not to missed if you visit our City.
Did you know that Panama has 5 UNESCO World Heritage Sites? Well if you didn’t, check this out!
Three Natural Sites
Since 1981: Darien National Park
This incredible National Park in the Eastern part of Panama, on the borders of Colombia, is home to an extraordinarily rich flora and fauna. It has a variety of habitats from tropical forests, mangroves and swamps, wetlands and beaches. Two of Panama’s indigenous tribes the Wounaan and Embera have their home in this incredible park. It has 169 identified mammals, to name some of them: the near threatened jaguar, the endangered tapir, bush dog and the capybara. Darien National Park has a lot to offer if you are in love with nature and incredible biodiversity!
Since 1983: La Amistad National Park and Talamanca Range- La Amistad reserves
The Talamanca Mountains are enclosed by this breathtaking national park and reserves. It is considered to be the tallest and wildest mountain range in Central America. There are numerous ecosystems and landforms, such as rivers, valleys and lakes which were shaped by glaciers. Also in this national park you can find an incredible amount of different animals: 215 mammals including the Puma and Jaguar and abundant bird, amphibian, reptile and fish species. Don’t miss this incredible biodiversity and unique scenery!
Since 2005: Coiba National Park
This unique island once was a penal colony and along with other 38 smaller islands and its surrounding marine area is the Coiba site National Park. Abundant marine life such as whales and tiger sharks has its home in the surrounding marine area. The variety of endemic flora and fauna on this wonderful island is due to years of separation from the Mainland. You really should discover the natural beauties of the island, but always in a sustainable way!
Two Cultural Sites
Since 1980: Portobelo-San Lorenzo Caribbean Fortifications
The forts of Portobelo and San Lorenzo, listed as endangered, were constructed by Spanish colonialists to protect the first town of Panama Ciy which had become a very significant trade center. The forts continuously suffered attacks by pirates. It really is an incredible site, as it provides very important information about the defense system which was used in the 17th and the 18th centuries! Don’t miss the site for the real Pirates of the Caribbean.
Since 1997: Panamá Viejo Archaeological Site and Historic District of Panamá
The Panama Viejo Archaeological Site and Historic District of Panama dates back to the 16th century, and is the oldest European settlement along the Pacific coast. In 1673 it has been burned to the ground, so it was located in Casco Viejo.
Significant information on various aspects of the social life, communication and the economy can be read through the ruins. Numerous Churches, medieval houses, the presidential palace and the Salón Bolivar are cultural landmarks in the historic district. Follow the the steps of the Spanish empire in Latin America in this beautiful site and book a historical tour with us.
Panama has so much to offer – besides of an incredible nature and biodiversity, our beautiful country has a very significant history. Our local guides will take you through an unforgettable cultural, historical and natural experience through our beautiful country! For tours or more information contact firstname.lastname@example.org or visit our website http://www.ecocircuitos.com.
Adventure, Conservation and Education
By Raffaele Capomolla
The Darien – A region of Panama, that is still unexplored, with an incredible biodiversity, stunning wildlife and a breathtaking beauty. The Darien is not just a place to go and see, but place you will admire, where you will literally feel the nature, which will offer you an unforgettable experience. I had the chance to accompany a group of biology students from the St. Edwards University in Austin, Texas through an adventure in Panama’s treasure of wildlife. The adventure started very early in the morning in Panama City, where we were picked up for a long drive to El Real in the Region of Darien. Once arrived there, we had to hike for 2 hours until we arrive to place called “Rancho Frio”, where we would overnight in tents and hammocks, exposed to nature, in the middle of this beautiful, virgin rainforest. The next day we went on a trail in the area, which beat all our expectations – we saw the impressive harpy eagle, a powerful and very beautiful prey bird. To finish this great trail our extraordinary local guides took us to a wonderful waterfall to have a swim and eat a snack in the middle of nature. We were impressed of what the Darien gave us to see; amazing birds, snakes, insects and amphibians. The region of the Darien is also habitat of the Jaguars; unfortunately, we didn’t see them, but that’s nature is – unpredictable.
Our next part of the trip was an incredible, cultural experience. We went to the Mogue indigenous community, where the “Embera” have their houses made of wood. We literally got to experience their way of living, their old traditions, their typical food and their language. We were impressed of the simplicity of their lives, with no electricity, no internet, just using the nature in a sustainable way. I was touched of the answer of an Embera when I asked him: “How much meat do you eat? Do you kill animals for food every day?” And he replies: No, because if we kill a lot of animals in a short time, we won’t have enough”. It seems ridiculous, but this is something a lot of people nowadays still don’t realize – Such a simple and obvious answer, but too many people still continue to eat meat every day. We stayed a night in one of those rustic but very authentic houses of the Embera.
The last part of our trip was in the beautiful Archipelago of San Blas, called “Kuna Yala” in indigenous language. Not only we enjoyed the typical Caribbean, crystal-clear waters of the Atlantic ocean, but also the culture of this indigenous community, which had to fight a lot for their territory. We slept in comfortable, rustic cabanas and had fresh seafood every day. The Kunas are very organized and very proud of their culture, which they always transmit to future generations. I was picking up a coconut that fell from a palm tree and was first a little confused when a Kuna asked me to pay for the coconut I just found on the sand. But then I understood as he explained to me that the coconut is a very important and sacred object in their daily lives, because the coconut is still used as a payment method for goods. We had then the chance to visit the village and the Museum of the Kunas, where Mister Delfino explained us everything about the history, the culture and traditions of the kunas.
If you are planning to come to Panama, don’t miss the chance to visit the incredible, natural beauty of the Darien and the marvelous clear waters of San Blas. You will have it all in one – Nature, Culture and Adventure! The EcoCircuitos Team and our naturalist guides will be happy to organize this adventure for you. Just contact us!
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There are a lot of reasons to visit Panama. You have probably already thought of the Panama Canal, which is one of the world’s most famous accomplishments of modern engineering. Maybe you have considered a tropical island or beach, or just the climate, which is warm all year round. But there is a lot more to Panama: read here some of our staff picks to do in Panama City.
1. Visit Seafood market and walk or bike Cinta Costera towards the Casco Antiguo neighborhood while eating a fresh seafood ceviche.
2. Take a tour at the Biodiversity Museum and hire of our naturalist guides for an introductory rainforest tour in the Metropolitan Park
3. Bar hopping in Casco Viejo at night and don´t miss the Jazz Bar in the American Trade Hotel
4. Historical City Tour– walking Panama la Antigua and learn about the Pirates and Conquistadors and the Canal zone era
5. Kayaking the Panama Canal in the Gatun Lake and a visit to a local Wounaan community for handcrafts shopping
6. Visit the Contemporary Art Museum and take a Art Cultural Tour with a local panamanian artist
7. Hike, bike or wildlife observation at one of the many trails of the Soberania National Park
8. Go on a historical trekking the old 8-mile Camino de Cruces Trail takes you through primarily tropical forest
9. Ride the Transcontinental train towards the Atlantic side in one day: The Pirate trail and Panama Canal
10. Enjoy the local gastronomy (tasajo empanada, carimañola, tortilla, yuca frita, and the seafood of Panama).