The Panama Canal has now been open for 103 years, and is still considered one of the greatest engineering feats the world has ever seen.
The Panama Canal is 49 miles long, took 17 years to build and had enough land dug out, you could circle the earth four times.
But as incredible achievement it remains, it is only a slither of what the magnificent country of Panama has to offer.
Here at Arik Travel, we love offering you the vacations of a lifetime, and a top destination remains Panama. With our exclusive, yet affordable Panama vacation packages, you can explore the marvelous country for yourself. With tons of secrets ready to discover, enjoy a thoroughly diverse adventure in Panama.
Here at Arik Travel, we explore 7 must-see things to do when on vacation in Panama. Read on to find out more…
Tourists come from all over the world to see the spectacle that is the Panama Canal. You can ejoy the best panoramic views from the four-story Miraflores Lock Visitor Center.
Many savvy travellers time their visits to the canal to view one of the big ships transiting. It is quite a spectacle, and it’s worth hanging around to see a big ship or two when you visit the canal.
Other highlights around the canal include a visit to the brand-new Panama Canal Expansion Observation Center. Opened in 2015 and costing nearly $6 billion, it’s a beautiful spectacle offering unbeatable views throughout the canal.
Bocas Del Toro
Found on the north-western Caribbean coast, Bocas Del Toro is a beautiful archipelago of tropical islands, boasting sandy beaches and crystal water.
Offering some of the best scuba-diving and surfing conditions in the country, it’s understandable that tourism and aqua adventure are big draws.
Bocas Del Toro has something for everyone. Whether you are after secret islands with miles of unspoiled coast line, or fancy some adrenaline sports like kayaking, zip-lining and jungle trekking, Bocas Del Toro has it all. A deserted paradise is waiting for you!
In order for Panama to create the infamous Panama Canal, the River Chagres was dammed and an area roughly the size of the Barbados was flooded. The result of this land-mass distribution is the artificial, yet astonishingly beautiful Lake Gatun.
Just a one hour boat trip from Panama City, you are able to see a huge array of wildlife in its ‘natural’ habitat. Lake Gatun is home to crocodiles, sloths, monkeys plus many species of birds. Also, because of the cross-over the lake has with the canal, if you choose a tour, it’s more than likely you’ll get a mini-tour of the infamous waterway.
Hidden at the bottom of the Baru Volcano, the stunning mountain-side town of Boquete is nothing short of a natural paradise.
With a huge array of activities to partake in, you won’t be sat twiddling your thumbs in Boquete. You can hike, rock-climb, whitewater-raft, as well as going in search for the local rare birds. Panama boasts upwards of 900 species of birds, of which 500 can be found around Boquete. You’re in for a special treat if you spot the highly sought Quetzal.
Furthermore, Boquete is home to some of the most exclusive coffee growers in the planet. This includes one of the most expensive brews in the world, Café Geisha. Café Geisha will set you back nearly $2,000 for a kilo or close to $50 a cup. Enjoy!
San Blas Islands
Consisting of 378 islands, this archipelago off the northern coast of Panama has a tropical island for every day of the year – plus some spares. 50 of the 378 islands are inhabited by Kuna Indians who own the islands of San Blas. They also help to operate and protect these idyllic islands.
The beaches are like something from a movie that will satisfy even the most extreme Robinson Crusoe ideas and fantasies. However, for the majority of people, it’s the Kuna people themselves who remain the highlight of the San Blas Islands. They are extremely proud of where they live, and welcome any visitor as if they were family or friends. The lifestyle of the Kuna people hasn’t changed much from centuries previous, and this won’t change any time soon.
Be ready to slow right down, very quickly. Find a beach, sit under a palm tree and wait for civilization to call you back! This is a particular highlight for us here at Arik Travel.
More than 400 years ago, English buccaneer Sir Francis Drake met his grizzly and abrupt end in Portobelo. He met his match against the Spanish cannons of Portobelo, whose fort and cannons still remain.
Visitors are able to indulge themselves in the pirate history with knowledgeable locals, or visit the church of San Felipe. In the church of San Felipe, you can find a statue of Black Christ. The statue of Black Christ attracts thousands of pilgrims every year during the month of October.
Another favorite activity in Portobelo, is grabbing lunch at the picturesque El Palenque. It’s an idyllic spot right on the water’s edge that offers fresh sea-food and typical Panamanian cuisine. We’re sure you’ll enjoy this one.
Casco Viejo, Panama City
In stark contrast to the modern, skyscraper-filled skyline of Panama City’s bay, Casco Viejo stands somewhat colonial and authentic in the distance. But, this is where the real action of Panama City lies.
During the evenings, Casco Viejo offers a perfect balance of edgy and sophistication, with music pouring onto the streets from every corner. Whether you are after a cheap beer with the locals, or a more up-market cocktail with loved ones, Casco Viejo has it all.
During the day time it’s a perfect spot for drinking a coffee in Plaza Bolivar, searching for a bargain or two in Plaza de La Independencia or watching a marvelous sunset from a view-point above Plaza Francia. The view-point above Plaza Francia is the best vantage point of the city in our opinion. It offers a stunning panoramic, that won’t disappoint.
Panama really is a location that dreams are made of and with Arik Travel, we can make that dream a reality. For unbeatable and unrivalled Panama vacation packages, get in touch with our friendly team. They are readily available to plan your perfect getaway. What are you waiting for?
Call Arik Travel now on 916 688 3700.