Panama is for Adventurers

There’s another side to Panama, just beyond the Panama Canal — dense biodiverse ecosystems like rainforests and islands. Sip pure coffee and enjoy amazing rivers and vibrant ingenious cultures. Let go of control and give Panama the wheel.

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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

FAM TRIP: PANAMA CANAL EXPEDITION CRUISE & ADVENTURE – JUNE, 2018

Discover the natural and cultural beauty of Panama on board of the Discovery cruise Yacth.   This amazing journey will take you to the Darien National Park in search of amazing wildlife and for a cultural exchange with one of our distinct indigenous groups: the Emberas.   We will also navigate the Pearl Island Archipelago and will have the unique experience of a crossing the renowned Panama Canal.  This will be combined with historical tours while walking the legendary trails of the of Pirates and Conquistadores that once fought in the Isthmus that changed the world.

Day 1 – June 5, 2018 Welcome to Panama! 

Today at the appropriate time an EcoCircuitos representative will meet you at the Tocumen International Airport to assist and transfer you to your hotel located in Panama City. You will also receive an EcoCircuitos information kit. Upon your arrival at your hotel please check in.   Once you arrive at Tocumen International Airport you will first go through immigration, then you will proceed to pick up your luggage.  After you have your luggage you will need to clear customs and agriculture, you will pass all your luggage through an x-ray machine.  Then you will proceed to exit the area, once you pass through the exit door you can go either to the right or the left. EcoCircuitos Panama recommends that you go to the right to better locate our staff who will be receiving you with a sign bearing your name with the company’s logo.  Then transfer to your hotel in the City.  Overnight hotel Central or similar.

 Day 2 – June 6, 2018 Historical City Tour and visit the Biodiversity Museum

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During the half-day morning tour, you will visit the ruins of Old Panama, climb up the Cathedral tower, visit the Old Panama Museum and then continue to Casco Viejo (the old city compound), which dates back to the late 1600’s. A bilingual guide will describe the events in history leading up to the eventual movement of the capital city to its present location. Casco Viejo is home of monuments of Ferdinand de Lesseps and other Frenchmen instrumental in the ill-fated attempt of the French to construct a canal through Panama. The full-day tour continues to visit the Biodiversity Museum designed by Canadian-American Architect Frank Gehry, the Biomuseo is his only work in Latin America and the tropics. The building was designed to tell the story about how the Isthmus of Panama rose from the sea, uniting two continents, separating a vast ocean in two, and changing the planet’s biodiversity forever. The Biomuseo’s 4,000 square meters contain 8 permanent exhibition galleries designed by Bruce Mau Design. An expert from the Museum will conduct the visit. In addition to the main spaces, the museum includes a public atrium, a space for temporary exhibitions, a shop, a cafe, and multiple outdoor exhibits displayed in the botanical park. The permanent exhibition is a combination of art and science that leads the visitor to experience a marvelous phenomenon.

Return to the hotel in the afternoon for overnight. (B, L)

Day 3 –June 7, 2018 The Pirate Trail: Agua Clara Locks & Fort San Lorenzo – Early in the morning, your guide will meet you at your hotel for a drive across the Isthmus of Panama to the Caribbean province of Colon. You will visit the Gatun Locks and Fort San Lorenzo, which was sacked by the famous Pirate Captain Morgan during his legendary attack on Panama City. Also, you will hike the San Lorenzo National Park trails looking for wildlife with an expert naturalist guide. Along the way, you will stop at a site where remnants of Las Cruces Trail, the 400-year-old colonial trail used by the Spaniards to transport gold across the isthmus, are still found. Once in Colon Province, you will take a short ferry ride over the Panama Canal, you will have the opportunity to see both the Gatun and Agua Clara Locks on one end and Colon 2000 port at the other end. Once you reach the other side of the Canal you will make your way to Fort San Lorenzo a UNESCO World Heritage Site built at the mouth of the Chagres River. The road will lead us deep into the rainforest until we get to the impressive ruins situated on cliffs overlooking endless rainforest and abandoned coastlines. The Spanish bastion formerly served to fortify and protect the river entrance of the Las Cruces Trail that led to Panama City on the Pacific Ocean. This entrance was later used as the port of entry for gold diggers on their way to California during the second half of the 19th century. Enjoy the rich history and extensive panorama of the fort and hike through the rainforest within San Lorenzo National Park, watching out for monkeys, Two and Three-toed sloths, coatimundis, toucans and other wildlife species. Lunch will be at a local restaurant.  The return if is a weekday will be on board of the transcontinental train to recreate the experience of the California Gold Rush age and enjoy the spectacular landscape of the heart of the Panama Canal watershed from the comfort of your train cabin.  Overnight at the Central hotel.  (B,L)

 Day 4 – June 8, 2018 Embarkation & Panama Canal Transit

 

Today you will be transferred to the middle of the Panama Canal for the Discovery embarkation. After embarkation, you will join the afternoon’s ship convoy for our southbound canal passage. Navigate the Gaillard Cut, the narrowest section of the Panama Canal, bisecting the Continental Divide. This section of the canal is full of history and geological value and you will be able to appreciate the continuous maintenance that this area requires, because it is very susceptible to landslides. At Pedro Miguel Locks and Miraflores Locks, the Discovery will be lowered 85 feet back to sea level of the Pacific Ocean. You will have a once in a lifetime opportunity to experience up close the history and operation of this engineering marvel. (B, L, D)

Day 5 –June 9, 2018 Darien Jungle & the Embera Indians

Step aboard a time machine and travel back more than 600 years to a place that not many have had the privilege of experiencing. More than an excursion, this is a journey into the lives of the Embera Indians. A proud people who have been able to maintain their traditions and lifestyle as they were before the Spaniards colonized the region. These natives are also master crafters of cocobolo woodcarvings and basketry. After motoring up river you will see the village emerging from the jungle, as if by magic.  Keep your eyes open along the way as the region offers abundant wildlife that is particularly active along the river’s edge. (B, L, D)

Day 6 –June 10, 2018 Pearl Islands

Snorkel and swim in the waters of the Pearl Islands. The archipelago owes its name to the abundance of pearl oysters, which supported a substantial fishery in the early 1900’s. On the outer portion of the archipelago, the islands are home to some pristine beaches and fertile fishing grounds. View the remains of the submarine Explorer built in 1865 during the Civil War and which sunk off the coast of San Telmo during the oyster fishery of the late 1800´s. (B,L,D)

Day 7 –June 11, 2018 Disembarkation & Hiking and Wildlife Observation at the Rainforest Discovery Center

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Today you will arrive Flamenco Marina and disembark the Discovery. Our guides will meet you for another exciting adventure.  Our EcoCircuitos naturalist guide will pick you up at the pier for a ride to the scenic Gamboa Road to Pipeline Road located in the Soberania National Park. You will experience a unique tour exploring the canopy of the Soberania National Park; you will be fascinated by the beautiful view of the forest, the lake and the national parks that protect the canal’s watershed. The upper rainforest canopy at the Rainforest Tower is 30 meters high with emergent trees reaching 40m. Our naturalist guide will explain you the wildlife that you will observe during this trip and you will learn about the sustainable use of water and the recycling materials of this great educational facility in the core of the forest.  Along the way, watch out for Green iguanas and three-toed sloths resting on tree branches, Ospreys in the hunt for Peacock basses, Snail Kites and Keel-billed toucans, amongst many other wildlife species.  Look for the White-faced Capuchin, Mantled Howler Monkey, Central American Spider Monkey, and Geoffrey’s Tamarin among other species.

 Departure to the airport late in the afternoon

At the appropriate time, you will be transferred to the Tocumen International Airport for your outbound flight. You will arrive at the airport approximately 2 hours before your departure time.

Note: customers will be picked up 3 hours before flight time. (B)

End of services.-

Price per person in double: $1485.00

Rack rate:  $2995.00

For details please contact info@ecocircuitos.com

Only for wholesalers and their travel agencies with certification.

Adventure in Coiba National Park

Coiba national park

With the exception of the Galapagos and Isla del Coco, few places in the Americas are as exotic and biodiverse as this national park on Coiba Island. Due to its hard accessibility and the strict environmental protection, the island features pristine ecosystems and a unique fauna.

Coiba National Park consists of a group of Islands in the Pacific Ocean south of Veraguas Province. The park covers 270,125 hectares, of which about 80% is marine, the islands cover only 20% of the surface area. The waters around Coiba are very rich in life. There may be as many as 700 species of fish swimming in the waters around Coiba and some of those are present in large numbers.

While snorkeling near Coiba, you are often surrounded by hundreds of fish, mostly by small plankton-eating fish such as panamic sergeant majors and scissortails. The reefs are inhabited by morays, butterfly fish, angel fish, parrot fish, hawk fish, tile fish, moorish idols, wrasses, white-tipped reef-sharks (harmless) and many others. Occasionally, you may encounter a huge snapper, grouper or a nurse shark on the reef. The reefs are also home to turtles, mostly hawksbill and olive ridley turtles, but green turtles and loggerheads have been seen as well. The edges of the reef are often visited by blue-fin trevally and other species of jacks, trevallies, rainbow runners and occasionally schools of black-tail barracudas (harmless) also make a pass along the reefs. Wahoo, yellow fin tuna, sail fish and marlins roam the deeper waters of the park.

The island is home to 36 species of mammals, 39 species of amphibians and reptiles, and 147 species of birds. Some of the land animals have been isolated from the mainland for so long that they have evolved into different species. The Coiba agouti and the Coiba howler monkeys are a different species from those you encounter on the mainland. These two and the Coiba spinetail (Cranioleuca dissita), a bird, only occur on Coiba and nowhere else in the world. Coiba is also the only place in Panama where you can see flocks of the threatened Scarlet Macaw (Ara macao).

Check our Coiba adventure for more information.  We offer special discounts for students and groups.

For more information contact info@ecocircuitos.com  or call +507 3151488

EcoCircuitos Panama: Promoting Sustinable Tourism in Panama

EcoCircuitos Panama: http://www.ecocircuitos.com
31 Albrook Plaza, Panama City, Panama
+507 315 1488

Since 1999, EcoCircuitos Panama has been a company committed to the development of sustainable tourism by providing diverse options for responsible and low impact travel thought the Republic of Panama. It is a locally owned company that works on a grass roots level providing greener options for traveling.

EcoCircuitos founder Annie Young Jaén realized earlier than most Panamanian tour operators, that the sensitive natural and cultural destinations in the country would need to be approached with much care and understanding. “The core element in all our tours is to keep the environmental impacts to a minimum while at the same time maximizing the benefits to the local host communities. The customized tours and adventures are  designed to have a strong educational side: each traveler is accompanied by a local guide who is not only an expert on the nature and culture of the visited area, but also follows and teaches minimum-impact principles”.

EcoCircuitos aims to combine fun outdoor adventures, cultural exchanges and nature preservation to make an unforgettable vacation for their clients, all organized and lead by local talents.  “Maximizing the skills and opportunities of the local suppliers, guides and staff to grow together through tourism is one of the main goals for us”.

The EcoCircuitos staff is an inspirational group of people who are all committed to provide alternatives to conventional tourism in Panama. They truly care about their clients and make sure that each and every experience is unique and genuine, showing the true Panamanian culture and spirit. The team is passionate about sustainable travel and work continuously to improve not only their operations through best-practice learning but also those of their suppliers in the office and the field.

The company’s commitment is further visible in their key role in the founding of APTSO (www.aptso.org) The Panamanian Association for sustainable tourism. EcoCircuitos hope that their permanent example of best practice will become a model and learning opportunity to other Panamanian companies to inspire a more sustainable and responsible development of Panama Tourism.