Panama Culture & Wildlife8 days & 7 nights, Private Journey
Handcrafted itineraries for one or more travelers with on-the-ground support, a private guide, and a private vehicle. Private Journeys represent the best of the custom programs we've designed over the years. Our insider knowledge and destination expertise make these innovative journeys truly unique experiences.Private Journey
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Day 1Arrive Panama City
Welcome to Peru! Upon arrival, you will be met and assisted to your hotel. The balance of the day will be at your leisure.Central Hotel Panama - 2 Nights
Day 2Panama City
In the morning, you will visit the Metropolitan National Park, which is the only tropical forest in Central America that is located in the heart of a city. Continue to Casco Antiguo, a colonial area that represents the second Panama City, characterized by unique architecture. You will visit the San Jose church with its famous Golden Altar, walk along the French Plaza and explore historic Casco Antiguo with your bilingual guide. Visit a gourmet shop that specializes in rich Panamanian chocolate, learn about Panamanian cacao, and enjoy samples. Explore the seafood market for a taste of fresh ceviche.Central Hotel Panama (B, L)
Day 3Panama City to Boquete
Visit the ruins of Old Panama, also known as "Panama La Vieja." Founded in 1519, Old Panama was the first settlement on the Pacific Ocean. Explore the Miraflores Locks Visitors Center, where you will visit multiple exhibits on the Canal and have the opportunity to view its operations. Depending on the vessel transit program scheduled by the Panama Canal Authority, you could have the opportunity to see live ship transits. After the tour, you will be transferred to Albrook Airport for your flight to David, where one of our representatives will be waiting to escort you to Boquete.Valle Escondido - 2 Nights (B, L)
Visit a beautiful coffee plantation in the highlands of Boquete, a coffee-growing region popular for its rich volcanic soil and ideal climate. As you walk the fields you will learn about the growing and processing of the coffee plant. You will also have the chance to visit the roasting house. Walk around Boquete, visiting the local market and take the opportunity to interact with the locals.Valle Escondido (B)
Day 5Boquete to Panama City
The Boquete Honey and Butterfly Tour will give you a unique perspective on Boquete and Chiriqui Highlands. Try over 15 different varieties of honey products and learn first-hand about the bees that make the marvelous Boquete honey. Visit the new butterfly house, hosting 35 native butterfly species. In the late afternoon, catch your flight back to Panama City. A representative will be waiting for you at Albrook Airport to transfer you to your hotel.Valle Escondido - 3 Nights (B)
Day 6Panama City
Travel to Chagres National Park, home of the Embera indigenous village. Board a motorized canoe and explore the Chagres River on the way to the Embera community. At the Embera village, you will be greeted with dancing and music. Learn about Embera customs and their relationship with nature. There will be handcrafts available for sale and you will have a chance to be painted with the traditional jagua, a natural dye the Embera use to adorn their bodies, before enjoying a traditional Embera lunch.Valle Escondido (B, L)
Day 7Panama City
Discover Soberania National Park, with its picturesque walking trails and wide variety of bird species. Start your tour hiking along the trails, observing up to 14 species of hummingbirds, as well as sloths, anteaters and trogons. Ascend the 40-meter tower to contemplate the famous blue cotinga and toucans, and visit the viewing platform by the lake. Explore Gatun Lake, including some of the islands formed after the creation of what was once the largest artificial lake in the world. Keep an eye out for crocodiles, caimans and monkeys.Valle Escondido (B)
Day 8Depart Panama
In the morning, enjoy breakfast at the hotel. At a pre-arranged time, you will be assisted to the airport for your flight home.(B)
Generally, road travel in Latin America is reasonably good, however conditions vary greatly between the modern capital cities and the more remote areas. When traveling off the beaten track, roads are frequently narrow, bumpy, pot-holed and have stretches which are not paved, or which are under reconstruction. In Costa Rica, northern Chile and Bolivia particularly, conditions are very dusty and / or bumpy, and the road journeys tend to be quite strenuous. Road conditions change throughout the year and heavy rain and extreme weather patterns can affect journey times. Types of vehicles vary according to the country visited and the numbers on a tour: on escorted groups, transport will usually be in the form of a European-style coach or, for smaller groups, may be by mini-bus. On individual journeys, transport will generally be by sedan car. In destinations where conditions require it, off road driving will be in 4 x 4 vehicles.
Internal Flights / Delays / Insurance: Many countries within Latin America have their own air pass and, wherever possible, our tours will be constructed with the appropriate air pass, which will minimize the costs of the internal flight. Please note that the majority of air passes have restrictions; therefore if you require an itinerary with full flexibility, please contact your tour consultant who will advise the additional cost to provide you with a more flexible ticket. Please also note that in certain cases we may not be able to book internal flights under an airpass. In this event a supplement may be payable.
Because of increased air traffic, government restrictions and/or changing weather conditions, flight delays have become more commonplace. These delays can cause problems with your holiday arrangements, and additional costs may well be involved. This may be in the form of added accommodation costs, transfers and/or onward tickets. If this should occur, everything possible will be done to minimize the inconvenience. Cox & Kings will endeavor to ensure that arrangements go as smoothly as possible. As services are paid for in advance any services missed due to delays and/or schedule changes are non-refundable. Please also bear in mind that many international flight tickets are non-changeable and non-refundable. The insurance policy offered by Cox & Kings is designed to mitigate the costs and effects of such delays in certain circumstances and we strongly advise that you are insured against such eventualities.
Flight Amendments: Flights on these tours are in general quoted separately and use special airfare. These have certain conditions, which normally restrict changes of date, route and airline. Any such change made after a ticket has been issued will normally necessitate the purchase of a new ticket at the passenger’s expense.
Airport Departure Taxes: Most cities in Latin America levy a departure tax for passengers departing on international flights, which have to be paid in local currency or the equivalent in US dollars. Other cities within a country may also levy a small charge for departures on domestic flights. Occasionally, taxes may be included on your ticket and we will advise you accordingly. Since there is no standard charge between countries, and taxes are subject to change, it is not possible to list the taxes in this brochure. We will advise you of the current charge with your final documents, and our local agents will confirm the amount payable on arrival. Please ensure you keep enough local currency or US dollars to cover these taxes.
During some itineraries, it may be necessary to depart for excursions or transfers to the airport very early in the morning, sometimes before dawn. This is normally either due to the flight schedules within Latin America, or in order for us to maximize the opportunities for sightseeing during your tour. A number of flights to Latin America arrive / depart early in the morning and, while we will endeavor to schedule your tour with a flight which arrives / departs at a reasonable time, sometimes there is little or no alternative and early check-in / check-out times may be required.
Accommodation standards vary dramatically throughout Latin America. In the larger cities, the hotels we use are fully modernized and have excellent facilities, unless you choose to opt for the more colonial style property, where facilities may be limited. In some smaller cities and more remote areas, we try to offer the best hotels available. However, these may be quite simple - sometimes small colonial-style properties, in which rooms may vary in size - and often have relatively basic facilities. Please note, all rooms reserved on your tour are standard; however, if you wish to upgrade your room (e.g. to a lake or falls view, deluxe or suite etc.), please speak to your tour consultant, who will be able to advise you about the options and the applicable supplements.
Check-in & Check-out Times: For all group and individual tours, hotel check-in / out time is normally 3:00 pm, but this does vary between hotels.
Jungle Lodges & Remote Areas: Accommodation in some wildlife lodges in the Amazon rainforest, are not comparable to the better properties found in parts of Africa and Asia. Accommodation is often reached via narrow and unpaved roads, or by boat, and can be a long way from other civilization. Even when you travel off the beaten track with Cox & Kings, you can be sure that your accommodation is the best available; however sometimes the best hotel may be the only hotel, which may be very modest. In these cases, we feel that the inconvenience of such accommodation is outweighed by the experience of staying in these more remote areas.
Capital: Panama City
Official Language(s): Spanish
Visa or Fees: A tourist card, costing $5, will be needed to be purchased on arrival.
Panama offers a variety of different landscapes and cultures. The metropolis of Panama City, biodiversity of the canal watershed and tropical islands give you the opportunity to experience a great deal in this small country.
What To See
Panama’s biggest attraction is Panama Canal. It is not necessary to cruise from the Pacific to the Caribbean to experience the wonder of this man-made engineering feat. Board a small skiff for an intimate encounter with the various wildlife as enormous cargo ships pass almost silently in the background.
Panama has a rich cultural history. From the indigenous people of the Embera Drua and the island Kuna Indians to the Spanish colonists, the living heritage of its people is what brings to this warm country. Volcanoes, beaches, adventure and coffee farms round out Panama’s most alluring attractions.
When To Go
Panama’s climate is tropical; the country’s climate can be divided into three distinct climatic regions: the coast along the Caribbean Sea, the Pacific Ocean and the mountainous region. The heat is not so bad between December and April. The coast which faces the Pacific Ocean has its dry season which runs from December to April, while the rainy season is between May and November. Average temperatures for this area are 80°F.The coast of the Caribbean Sea is more rainy, here the rainy season is 9 months, while the dry season is between March and May, the annual average temperatures are 79°F, in September-October there may be hurricanes.
The mountainous northern region has a cooler climate, and the rain is concentrated in the months between May and October. The best period for visiting is the dry season from December to April.
Panama Culture & Wildlife
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