Panama Holidays & Accommodation
Panama, the most southerly of the Central American countries, has the engineering miracle of The Panama Canal linking the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans carved into it. This canal makes the country unique in the Americas, and it's not the only thing that makes Panama unique from a visitor's point of view. The nation is also known globally its fine hats and to tourists for the hundreds of islands on both the Caribbean and Pacific coastline.
Panama Holidays Planner
On the Pacific coast, Panama City, the capital with almost a million people, is a modern high rise city and is a major international airport hub for all of the Americas. The city is surrounded by hills and tropical rainforest which has excellent sightseeing tours to spot exotic bids and wildlife including tapirs. The city itself has excellent shopping boulevards, lively restaurants and night life and a huge choice of hotels. Carnival is also celebrated in Panama, which makes it a great destination in the week leading up to Lent.
Panama is known for its rainforests and rivers as well. It has built a reputation as being a great destination for kayaking, rafting, and hiking. There are tour companies that can provide you with gear and guides throughout Panama, and the process is professional and streamlined. For others, they may want to explore the coast for surf spots or opportunities for windsurfing.
Panama's Islands are a wonderful opportunity to explore a more pristine forest life. Featured in National Geographic, for example, the San Blas Islands on the Kuna Yala Archipelago offer a unique opportunity to visit life among the Kuna Indians. The guides are very careful to observe the principles of eco-tourism, improving the well-being of local people with minimal impact on the environment.
White water rafting is fantastic in Panama and there is detailed information about the difficulty ratings of different rivers. White water rafting in the Viejo River in Chiriqui province is a wonderful experience, or you might try the Mamoni River. Many say that white water rafting in Panama is unparalleled in Central America.
White water kayaking schools are offered in Panama, but for those who already have the experience, the same rivers that are good for rafting offer great opportunities also for white water kayaking. For sea kayaking, you can visit the Las Perlas Archipelago on the Pacific coast, south east of Panama city for a scenic paddle with relatively calm water, or you can go to Coiba National Park and explore a large region of islands, beaches, mangroves, and coral reefs
For Carnival, two cities in Panama, Panama City and Las Tablas have parades and festivals for the four day celebration. Las Tablas has a more traditional take on the festivities, and within the city different neighbourhoods undertake a rivalry and compete to put on the best seasonal celebration.
Panama City has a great neighbourhood called the Casco Viejo with old style architecture that you can visit and walk around to see examples of the Colonial building style. Also in the capital city is the Amador Causeway, a breakwater that was constructed by joining several small islands, and you can tour the area on rented bikes for a pleasant afternoon.
Another pleasant feature of a trip to Panama is taking the trans-isthmus train. This is a train that traverses the Central American continent, ocean to ocean, for a scenic trip that cannot be undertaken in many places in the Americas.