Hiking, Wildlife/Bird watching, Horseback Riding, Golf, White Water Rafting, Surfing, Snorkeling, Scuba Diving, Rock Climbing, Kayaking, Canopy Touring, Deep Sea Fishing, Trout and Bass Fishing, Island Exploring, Whale and Dolphin Watching or just relaxing and enjoying the natural beauty of this paradise…All of these activities are available all year round in this amazing region of Panama.
Panama has 14 National Parks with a total area of 1,391,833 hectares representing approximately 22% of the surface area of the country. Those who visit the western highlands feel they have entered a different world, a world filled with powerful rivers, beautiful waterfalls, magnificent mountains, secluded hot springs, and virgin forests bursting with life.
There are two national parks in this area of Panama, La Amistad National Park and Baru Volcano National Park La Amistad National Park’s nearly one million acre International Friendship Peace Park is a shared park between Costa Rica and Panama and contains some of Panama's richest biodiversity with seven of the 12 life zones found here. There are hiking trails for both the novice and the expert hiker. The park extends from the Chiriqui mountains to the Caribbean Sea.
Wildlife & Birdwatching
Over one hundred species of mammals have been recorded in La Amistad Park, including the howler monkey, black-handed spider monkey, and white-throated capuchin monkey. The five species of cats found in Panama have been sighted in this area. More than 400 species of birds have been recorded in the park, including the Harpy Eagle, glow-throated hummingbird and the rarely seen elsewhere, Resplendent Quetzal, considered by many to be the most beautiful bird in the world. Panama has thousands of species of plants. It has over 1,200 species of orchids alone. The majority of which are found in the cool highlands of Chiriqui.
There are riding trails throughout the highlands in Chiriqui.
Several golf courses are available in the Chiriqui area including a 9 hole executive course and an 18 hole championship course, both in Boquete.
Kayaking, Canopy Touring & White Water Rafting
Tours can be arranged through highly professional outfitters in nearby Boquete.
Snorkeling & Scuba
With over 1,500 islands, Panama offers excellent diving on both the Caribbean and Pacific. Coiba Island, at 270 Sq. kilometers is Panama’s largest island and is part of a national park. The diving here has been described as a cross between that off the Galapagos Islands and Cocos Island in Costa Rica. It has the second-largest coral reef in the eastern Pacific Ocean and was recently declared a World Heritage Site because of it’s tremendous biodiversity. Orcas, dolphins, humpback whales, whale sharks, manta rays, barracudas, amberjack, big snappers, marlin, moray eels, and white-tip sharks, and sea turtles are just a few of the species commonly seen here.
Panama holds more world records for saltwater fishing than any other place on earth. There is excellent sportsfishing on both the Caribbean and Pacific coasts. “Catch and release” is commonly practiced to ensure that the huge numbers of fish will be here for future generations. Just 20 minutes drive from Potrerillos Arriba you can board a fishing boat outside of David on the Pacific. Many of the rivers in the Chiriqui Highlands have trout and are excellent for fly fishing. Bass fishermen come from around the world to angle for the feisty Peacock Bass in massive Lake Gatun, the source of water for the locks in the Panama Canal.
David, Panama’s second largest city is less than an hour drive from Volcan. It has everything from a new mall, a huge Do-It Center hardware and home store, a membership discount store, several auto dealerships, a very modern hospital, hotels, restaurants and a casino. To do “world class” shopping, Panama City is only a 40 minute flight away. With several state-of-the-art malls and great prices, it has some of the most sophisticated shopping in the world.
Panama has world class surfing on both the Pacific and Caribbean coasts. Surfers from all over the world come to surf the best break in Latin America at Santa Catalina, Panama.
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