Begin with a morning visit to Gatun Lake for an amazing ecological boat ride and kayaking on the lake. Gatun Lake is located within an immensely diverse tropical ecological zone and is surrounded by untouched exotic rainforest.
Set off into the sky for a memorable experience soaring over Panama City and the Panama Canal in a private helicopter. This one-hour ride will take you from ocean to ocean, with exclusive views of the San Lorenzo Fortress, indigenous Embera villages, and the Canal’s full operations and current expansion site. Flying only 100 feet above the Chagres River will give you the opportunity to take top photos of the lush rainforest below.
Enjoy an ecological boat tour on Gatun Lake, a large manmade lake formed when the Gatun Dam was built across the Chagres River between 1907 and 1913. At the time of its creation, Gatun Lake was the largest artificial lake in the world, encompassing 430 square kilometers (166 sq mi). Today it remains an essential part of the Panama Canal system, carrying ships for 33 kilometers (21 mi) of their transit across the isthmus of Panama, and also generating crucial hydro-electricity for the operation of the Canal’s locks.
Follow the famous route that thousands of cargo ships take each year on a full transit of the Panama Canal. This one-day canal crossing on a shared boat first crosses under the Bridge of the Americas and then navigates through all three sets of the Canal’s locks: the Pedro Miguel Locks, the Miraflores Locks and the Gatun Locks. On this journey from the Pacific to the Atlantic, you will also travel through the historically significant Gaillard Cut, otherwise known as the Culebra Cut, and discover Gatun Lake.
On this full-day tour of Panama City, your guide will illuminate some of the highlights of this tropical metropolis. Start with a visit to the remains of the former capital city of Panama—Panamá Viejo, or Old Panama—founded in 1519 and looted by the pirate Henry Morgan in 1671.
This partial transit of the Panama Canal either follows a southbound or northbound route, depending on the day. On the partial transit, you will pass through two of the Canal’s three sets of locks: Miraflores Locks and Pedro Miguel Locks. The southbound route boards the shared boat in Gamboa and begins at the north end of the historically significant Gaillard Cut, also known as the Culebra Cut.
Spend the day in nature on an exciting day outside of Panama City in the surrounding rainforest. Begin with a morning visit to Soberania National Park, a biodiverse swatch of rainforest only 16 miles outside of the city. Spanning 55,000 acres, the park is known for its abundance of birds, with over 525 species identified here.
In the morning, you will be picked up at your hotel for your one-hour car ride towards the city of Colon, located on the Atlantic coast of Panama. First you will stop at the San Lorenzo Fort, a castle and fortress built by the Spaniards in 1598 to protect the entrance to the Chagres River from pirate attacks. The Chagres River was a very important waterway for the transportation of gold and many other goods from ocean to ocean, eventually ending up in Europe. This fortress was declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO In 1980.