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!
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 ritual and festive expressions of the Congo culture encompass the contemporary vision of a collective celebration of black rebel descendants enslaved during the colonial period During the Congo season, participants act out a matriarchal society in a palisade, ruled by a queen and her court. Everyone must help protect the queen and members of the palisade from the devils (diablos), and the season concludes with a confrontation between the diablos and the congos. Everyone takes part, and the expressions have been fostering social integration for generations.
Panama is blessed with its unique beaches in both the Pacific and the Atlantic. This amazing country has two long coasts and many islands that are ideal for family beach combing, surfing, kite surfing or other water sports.
Some of my favorite beaches I listed below:
- Veracruz Beach: It is at only 20 minutes from the City and this spot is great for those interested in Stand up Paddle or kayaking the bay of Panama. There are several rentals for SUP. Don’t miss it.
- Punta Chame: if you like kite surfing, this is your spot. A great mountain backdrop and very long beach. There are also schools in the area for kite surfing.
- Coronado and Serena beach: this is a little bay ideal for surfing. It is located close to condominiums and has easy access during the day.
- El Palmar and Rio Mar: both beaches are ideal for surfers. Some small hotels and restaurants in the area and close to Rio Mar more beachfront condominiums. I love to go there during the weekday.
- Playa Langosta: in Colon on the Atlantic side this beach is on the road to Portobello and at only 1.5 hours from the city. It is very very crowed during the weekends.
- Isla Grande: Also in Colon Province a little farther from Portobello this is a small fishing town, this beach is great for swimming and also for surfing on a shallow reef.
The Congos of Portobelo today are the descendants of the cimarrones—runaway slaves who fought for their freedom during the Spanish colonial period. After escaping into the mountain hills and forest, the cimarrones built their villages (Palenques) from which they waged wars against their former enslavers.
The Congos is beautiful dance full of mystery and legends, in which men and women stage with dances, songs and sonorous drums, the ancestral drama of life, and the fight between the good and evil.
The women dance swaying their hips in an almost erotic manner, using hands and feet to mark the man limits. They wear a long skirt made up of a patchwork of very bright colors fabric, a blouse with a colorful frill necklaces, flower in her hair, and bare feet. The men wear a fringed shirt and pants (made of strips of colored cloth), masks, and bare feet and dance around the women, doing their best to get close and kiss them. The rhythm of drums, singing and applause invites everyone around to participate in the Congo.
Check out the video below of a local news report about the 2013 Festival of Diablos and Congos:
Portobello is located in Colon at the Caribbean side of Panama and was established during the Spanish colonial time. With the old cannons, ruins and buildings I totally immersed into the pirates tales and leyends.
Heading north – east from Panama City it is about two hours away by bus. The ride along the Caribbean side with all the palm trees and small huts has already impressed me. It felt like a short holiday for me. We arrived on Saturday morning and slept in “Captain Jack’s hostel”. The hostel was designed like a hidden pirate stash. Decorated with old guns, swords, skulls and ripped pirate flags the place was really authentic. On top of it, the hostel was located on a top of a hill from where we had an amazing view over Portobello. The owner Jack had the aura and appearance of an old pirate.
After we have settled down and stored our things, we took a small boat to an outer island and relaxed and snorkeled there for the day. With nobody else besides us there, we felt like stranded sailors with some rum left.
At about 5PM we headed back to the hostel, drank some rum and exchanged our adventures with Captain Jack. It was an amazing night full of fun and stories.
The next morning we had a most delicious pirate breakfast with bacon, eggs, fruits and a secret sauce made by Jack. Before we jumped on the bus back to Panama City we visited the ruins of Portobello. Standing by the ancient cannons I could completely imagine how the Pirates attacked the port city. After a day of ancient times, I sadly had to leave this port city.
If you want to feel like a pirate and want to experience Portobello where Francis Drake is sunken or San Lorenzo Castle where Henry Morgan first arrive Panama. Contact us or visit our website www.ecocircuitos.com to find out more information. Contact us directly at 1-800-830-7142. We are looking forward to organize a trip for you!
By Marc Vedder