Highlights of Panama

Destination:   |  Duration: 8 days  |  Customized Package – Call for Pricing

This tour reveals the highlights of Panama, as well as the famous canal. Take a ride on a dugout canoe in the wild jungle, visit an Embera Indigenous community, take an Aerial Tram Tour, visit the Gatun Locks of the Panama Canal, witness the impressive Canal Expansion Project, tour historic Portobelo and much more.

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Day 1: Welcome to Panama!

Your journey begins when you arrive at Tocumen International Airport. You will be picked up from the airport by a representative and you will transfer to the Gamboa Rainforest Resort, a stylish hotel along the shores of the Panama Canal where you will be relaxing in luxury for the next three nights. This is where your unforgettable adventure in Panama begins!

Night in Casco Antiguo at Central Hotel – Jr. Suite

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Day 2: Chagres River and Embera Culture

Take a trip deep into the jungles of Chagres where the Embera indigenous people have lived for many centuries. Ride up the river in a traditional hand carved canoe and arrive in the village, where you will be taken back in time and immersed in the ancient Embera cultural dances and music. The traditions here have not changed much since the 1500s when Columbus arrived. Take a trek with the Embera people and learn about the native wildlife and birds of the area. Your Embera guide will reveal how they use rainforest plants as natural remedies. Watch the local women weave baskets out of palm leaves and have your body painted with natural fruit dyes.

Night in Casco Antiguo at Central Hotel – Jr. Suite

Day 3: Gatun Lake Expedition & Aerial Tram

Ascend 280 feet from the forest floor through the dense undergrowth to the canopy on the aerial tram. At the top you can climb the observation tower and enjoy stunning views of Soberania National Park.

Next you will take a thrilling 20 minute boat ride through the heart of the Canal and enter the labyrinth of islands on Gatun Lake, where you might spot howler monkeys, three toed sloths, capuchin monkeys, toucans, crocodiles, turtles, caimans and many colourful butterflies. Your experienced naturalist guide will educate you about the amazing wildlife of this diverse region.

Night in Casco Antiguo at Central Hotel – Jr. Suite

panama railway tour

Day 4: Panama Railway & Historic Portobelo

Board the train for an unforgettable journey on the Panama Railway. This historic track that snakes through protected rainforests and along the enormous Gatun Lake. It was completed in 1855 and was the first transcontinental railroad. Enjoy amazing views of the giant ships making their way through the Canal. Stop at Gatun Locks for an close up view of the ships moving through the complex system. We will also visit the massive Panama Canal Expansion project – an incredible feat of engineering.

End the day with a visit to the quiet historic bayside town of Portobelo, where you will feel like you have been transported back in time as you admire the colonial fortifications and monuments. Enjoy lunch at a Caribbean restaurant before continuing your sightseeing trip and heading back to your hotel.

Night at Hotel Le Meridien – Deluxe Room (BL)

Anton Valley Panama

Day 5: Private Anton Valley Tour

Take a gorgeous scenic drive through rolling hills and rural villages to the picturesque town of El Valle, located in the crater of a huge extinct volcano. This small town is surrounded by jagged mountain peaks, cool and refreshing creeks and lush fertile plains. Enjoy the cool and refreshing high altitude climate – El Valle is known as the “Land of Eternal Spring”.

Hike to refreshing waterfalls deep in the jungle and keep an eye out for tropical birds in the forest canopy. Visit the Nispero Botanical Gardens & Zoo and see the pre-Columbian petroglyphs at La Piedra Pintada. After a delicious meal at a local restaurant you will visit the famous Sunday handicraft market to check out the authentic wares of the indigenous artisans.

Hotel Le Meridien in a Deluxe Ocean View Room

Day 6: Panama City and Miraflores Locks

Panama City is fascinating, vibrant, cosmopolitan and one of the most important cities of the Americas. On this intriguing historic tour you will see all of the highlights of the old city, including the National Theater, the National Cathedral, the Panama Canal Museum and the San Jose Church.

Travel to Miraflores Locks to marvel at this impressive feat of engineering. You will also visit the “Causeway” – a group of three islands linked to the mainland by the breakwaters of the Panama Canal. This site was used by the US Army for the defense of the canal due to its strategic location. Today the Causeway is lined with restaurants, bars and excellent shopping, so pick up some traditional handicrafts including jewelry, wood carvings and hand-woven baskets.

Hotel Le Meridien in a Deluxe Ocean View Room

Day 7: Panama Canal Full Transit Tour

Depart bright and early from the Flamenco Marina and travel from the Pacific Ocean to the Atlantic Ocean in one day. Admire the stunning Bay of Panama and pass under the famous Bridge of the Americas. At Miraflores Locks the ship will ascend 18 meters in two distinct steps and enter the freshwater of Miraflores Lake. After exiting the lake at Pedro Miguel Locks, you will travel through the Galliard Cut. This narrow channel was carved through the Continental Divide.

Next, journey through Gatun Lake and pass the Smithsonian Research Station at Barro Colorado. At the Gatun Locks the vessel will be lowered yet another 26 meters. When you arrive at Colon you will disembark at Pier 6 and travel back to Panama City.

Hotel Le Meridien in a Deluxe Ocean View Room

Highlights of Panama


Day 8: Farewell to Panama

Today you will be picked up from the hotel lobby approximately 3 hours prior to your scheduled departure for the private transfer to Tocumen International Airport.