Adventure in Bocas del Toro – Tranquilo Bay Reserve

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

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Panama Destination: Chiriquí Highlands

The Chiriqui Highlands comprise the part of the Cordillera Central that defines the northern border of the province of Chiriquí.  It is a beautiful landscape of cloud forest, volcanic peaks, and coffee plantations and is home to most of Panama’s Ngöbe Indians.  In the province of Chiriquí, a few roads connect the highway to the highlands areas.  All these roads encompass one of the most beautiful scenic roads and landscapes of Panama.  Lowland areas give way to hills that have been clean for farming.  Ascending the mountains become sharper, their slopes more densely forested, and by noontime, they are enveloped in misty blue clouds.

La Amistad International Park

La Amistad is a binational park that stretches from Costa Rica into Panama, a small portion of which extends into the Chiriquí province. Here the land rises almost 5,000 feet, and warm air ascends the mountains where it meets with cooler air and condenses into persistent cloud cover. Cloudforest exhibit a unique ecosystem with an astonishing diversity of flora and fauna. Towering trees reach to the sun to form a canopy that creates a cool, shadowed, misty underworld on the forest floor. It is noisy with the sound of numerous ferns and epiphytes that crowd the lower and middle strata of the forest. Water drips from spongy mosses covering three trunks, from bromeliads that attach themselves to every cranny on the trees, and from flower petal perched high in the canopy of the forest. It is a magical world.

Boquete Mountain town

Tucked away on the eastern slopes of the Volcan Barú is small and charming mountain town of Boquete. Known to produce some of the best Coffee in Central America, Boquete is becoming a destination for those seeking great outdoor activities and good weather. Visitors bask in Boquete’s sunny and cool mountain climate and marvel at the beautiful landscape.

Boquete’s hills and slopes are primary covered in shade-grown coffee plantations.   Coffee is primary picked by the Ngöbe Indians during the months of October through February. Coffee picking season is a festive time when colorfully Indian families come from varios part of the Bocas del Toro and Chiriqui province to harvest the berries.

The highlands of Panama are the perfect place to practice different outdoor activities, such as hiking national parks, trekking adventures, birdwatching tours, river rafting, zip lining, downhill biking and more.  Contact us for more information on our extension tours to the highlands.  http://www.ecocircuitos.com

Kayaking in the Rainforest

By Meret Schueschke

Last week I got the chance to do something I had wanted to do for quite a while: To go kayaking in the rainforest with EcoCircuitos. It was going to be my first real rainforest experience, and I was really looking forward to it, but the real experience exceeded my expectations by far.

After less than an hour we arrived at Gamboa, where we were supposed to start off our kayaking excursion. While our guide and driver got the equipment ready we strolled around, had peeks into the butterfly house and aquarium they have there, and already spotted the first birds.

And then, we started out onto the lake. The cries of howler monkeys greeted us, accompanied by the distant sound of drumming that came from the Embera Village further down the shore. Along with wisps of mist hanging between the trees and the soft dripping of water from the paddles, this sound created a truly unreal experience. One of our little group described it very accurately when he said: “I could almost imagine KingKong coming out of this forest right now”

The next hours were an almost meditative experience. We spotted uncountable amounts of birds: since the kayaks make almost no sound passing through the water, you can get really close to animals as long as you don’t talk too much.

Before too long, the thatched roofs of the Embera village appeared between the trees, and by a stroke of luck we got to witness a short musical performance of the men of the tribe, as they were just receiving a group of visitors when we passed by.

I was  already feeling  like I had completely left the normal world behind, and then, weirdly enough, it got perfect when it started to rain. It had been a hot day so far, and the soft summer rain was so refreshing, and it changed the atmosphere into something almost magical. There was steam rising from the trees around us, the birds and monkeys seemed to wake up, like us being revived by that burst of fresh air the rain brought, and suddenly it was just us, the water, and the rainforest around us, and the real world so far away…

At some point we spied the howler monkeys, high up in a tree, another time we passed a large iguana. Eagles, herons, kingfishers and many more crossed our paths. Fish passed silently beneath us. We were silent, mostly, enjoying the tranquility of this spot we had all to ourselves, each taking in this different world for himself.

The three hours passed far too quickly, and all too soon we had to head back to the shore, and then to the city with all its activity…but the feeling of tranquility I had experienced there on the lake stayed with me for several days, and I am sure I will not forget this special feeling of being out on in this primeval forest so far from everyday life, and yet so close to home.

if you would like to know more about this or other rainforest tours, have a look at our website

Christmas Vacation in Panama

7 days and 6 nights
$725.00

This trip combines the cosmopolitan city of Panama, the highlands of El Valle and the Pacific Beach retreat at TOGO B&B or Buenaventura hotel.  City, Beaches and Rainforest in an unforgettable Christmas vacation in Central America.  Hike the cloudorest at a former crater in el Valle and enjoy a zip line adventure at Canopy Tour.  You will be staying at Los Mandarinos boutique hotel and SPA surrounded by beautiful mountains.  Admire the Panama Canal and the historical colonial sites and climb the observatory tower at Discovery Center.   Finish your trip by traveling into the Pacific Beach  with activities including snorkeling, fishing, and much more!

Contact us for the Caribbean Adventure in Bocas del Toro, San Blas, Boquete highlands, Azuero Peninsula and more.

For quotes and prices:  sales@ecocircuitos.com