Biodiversity Museum in Panama



Panama is known for the greatest man-made creation, the Panama Canal, but people don’t realize Panama`s emergence has great importance. Panama emerged 3 million years ago, creating a barrier between the Atlantic and the Pacific Ocean, uniting two continents (North America and South America) and contributing to the migration of species North to South. This led to a monumental change in the biodiversity of the world.

Frank Gehry, the renowned Canadian architect known for the Guggenheim in Bilbao, Spain; after 5 years of waiting and 10 years of construction finally presents his uniquely designed Biodiversity Museum to tell the hidden past, inquisitive present and the attractive future of this small but flourishing isthmus that change the world.

Where is it located?  The Biodiversity Museum is located in a strategic spot on the Amador Causeway, you can see the contrast in Panama´s growing skyline, the greenery from Cerro Ancon and look out into the Pacific Ocean to see boats cruising towards the Canal.

The Exhibitions:  The Biodiversity Museum has eight galleries, presently five are hosting exhibitions.

Biodiversity Gallery:   When you enter the first gallery, you will listen and see the abundance of life here in Panama; not only its fauna, but flora as well.

Panamarama:   Be prepared to be transported into Panama´s ecosystem with the help of ten screens and audiovisual display.

Building the bridge: You will learn why Panama is known as the “Bridge of Life”, through the geological explanation of the emergence from the sea.

Worlds Collide:   Beware! The animals might come alive in this exhibition. When the two land masses, North and South America came together, Panama became one of the main stomping grounds for a diversity of animals.


The Human Path: The history from when the first settlers arrived to the Isthmus until the present is portrayed in sixteen columns, each representing an important story on the human and nature relationship in Panama.

Additionally they have three temporary exhibitions.

Giant Sharks and Tiny Camels – Present until Saturday, December 31, 2016.

With the Expansion of the Canal, new discoveries of fossils have been exposed.

 The Biomuseo of the Future – Present until Saturday, December 31, 2016.

You will have the opportunity to learn more about the future three galleries that are coming to the Biodiversity Museum.

 Gehry in Panama – Present until Sunday, July 17, 2016.

Why Panama? There´s a reason why Gehry choose Panama from other Latin America to build this museum. Learn more about this interesting story and it´s construction.

Museum Hours

Closed on Monday

Tuesday through Friday 10:00 AM – 4:00 PM

Saturday and Sunday 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM

For more information on visiting the Biomuseo in Panama, contact us at











The July 19th News Focus in Science magazine features STRI’s debate regarding the timing of the rise of the Isthmus of Panama. In the weekly podcast, international news editor Richard Stone, who wrote the article based on a visit to STRI earlier this year, concludes: “The challenge for the backers of the new hypothesis is to overcome paleoocean data which points to a deep sea connection between the Caribbean and the Pacific that persisted until approximately 4 million years ago. I think that’s a pretty big challenge.
Most STRI scientists side with the accepted model of Isthmus formation based on marine microfossil and other evidence from the Panama Paleontology Project headed by Jeremy Jackson and Tony Coates. Their team concluded that the Isthmus closed about 3 million years ago, setting the molecular clock for geneticists who ask how “sister species” evolved after the oceans were separated.  The new hypothesis, initially proposed by geologist
Camilo Montes based on evidence he unearthed with Carlos Jaramillos’ group—taking advantage of the $5 billion Panama Canal widening project— is that the Isthmus closed as early as 15 million years ago.
NewsFocus: Battle for the Americas
Richard Strong
Science 19 July 2013: Vol. 341 no. 6143 pp. 230-233
DOI: 10.1126/science.341.6143.230