Panama Travel Guide
Panama travel guide
Due to its unique location like a strip between the Atlantic and Pacific ocean, Panama is a piece of heaven, a country surrounded by endless beaches offering more than spectacular landscapes.
Panama travel guide – Geography
Panama has land borders only with two countries Colombia and Costa Rica, has access to the Caribbean Sea in the Atlantic Ocean and to the Pacific Ocean and is crossed by the Panama Canal connecting the two oceans.
Located in the narrowest part of the Panama Isthmus, linking North America to South America, Panama is a tropical country with a central range of volcanic mountains whose slopes go down to the Atlantic and Pacific coast creating a unique and fabulous landscape.
The highest peak is Vulcan Barú 3474 m, and due to the presence of these volcanic mountains some beaches have black charcoal sand and others white.
We must also mention that there are also about 1000 islands on the Pacific coast among which the most important are the ones from the Pearl Archipelago, The Island of Coiba and the Islands of Taboga.
Panama has a tropical climate with a dry season and a rainy season, with heavier rainfalls on the Caribbean coast, thunderstorms but without hurricane threat. The temperatures are slightly lower on the Pacific coast and also at higher altitudes where sometimes even frosts can occur. All these features make the Republic of Panama a great exotic holiday location.
From a historic point of view Panama together with other countries from the isthmus were the first ones to be explored first by Columbus and then by Balboa in the XVI century.
Panama travel guide – Flora and Fauna
The tropical climate present here is an essential condition for the development of an exuberant and abundant flora. Representative is the rain forest covering about 40% of the country, mangroves near the river banks and ocean shores, orchids and alpine flora on the highlands of the volcanic mountains.
Wildlife is also very well represented by many species like the bushdog, the capybara, the largest rodent in the world and many more. You can also find here a heaven for birdwatchers with species like the harpy eagle, five species of macaws, parrots, toucans, bellbirds etc. Aqua fauna is rich as well, in sweet and sea water, the country’s name itself meaning “abundance of fish”.
Panama travel guide – Tips for tourists
Panama is not one of the most wanted destinations by tourists due to the presence of the more developed seaside resorts from the neighbor countries. Still, the natural beauties of this country are undeniable and this lack of visitors is an important factor in preserving all these treasures.
In order to travel to Panama you need a visa, a valid passport, a tourist card, which is usually valid for 90 days, and a return ticket to your departure place. The most comfortable time to travel to Panama is in the dry season from mid December to mid April.
The local currency is the Panamanian Balboa and the official paper currency is the United States dollar.
Panama travel guide – Transport
There is a reliable road system here with six highways linking the two American continents, and is also the main way of transport within the country. You ca also travel by bus, railway or charter airplanes. The main airports here are the Tocumen International Airport linking Panama with the rest of the world and other domestic airports like the Albrok Airport, Bocas del Toro Airport and many more.
Panama travel guide – Resorts
Many of the resorts here are located all over the coast line and even in the rain forest. The most popular resorts are the ones on the many beaches or islands like the Coronado Resort on the Coronado beach with comfortable suites, swimming pool for adults and children, club for children, quiet gardens with hammocks and many activities. If you like fishing you must choose the Tropic Star Lodge reachable only by plane and offering besides great accommodation many activities like kayaking, hiking and of course fishing trips.
For a vacation on one of the exotic Pearl Islands the Contadora Resort will offer you flawless services and accommodation, casino, tennis and volleyball court, recreational area for children and many activities like boat trips, windsurfing, diving, snorkeling etc.
Panama travel guide – Cuisine
Due to its location and rich history Panama’s cuisine is full of contrasts, with Spanish, African and Native American influences. The main ingredients are the local tropical fruits and vegetables, rice, beef and chicken meat, seafood and many spices and herbs. Some traditional Panamanian meals are the sancocho, a stew, full of meat and vegetables, the empanadas which is a type of corn or wheat flour pastry filled with meat, potatoes or cheese, the tamales which is boiled corn dough stuffed with meat and served on banana leafs. They also have many types of desserts like the tres leches cake and beverages among which the most popular is the beer.
Though Panama is a destination overlooked by many people it has a tremendous amount of tourist attractions waiting to be explored. Hundreds of exotic islands, impenetrable rainforests, the peaks of the volcanic mountains, crystal clear oceans, captivating animals and much more are the perfect ingredients for a holiday to remember.
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