Lake Gatun: This is a must do. The very best way to appreciate the massiveness of the Canal is by boat, either by booking a tour or arranging a local taxi. It is an awesome experience that we would be happy to help you arrange.
Many people don’t know it was necessary to create one of the world’s largest man-made lakes in order for ships to cut through the interior of Panama to enter the locks at each end. Lake Gatun is that passage. It is surrounded by a pristine natural preserve of dense jungle that remains one the world’s most bio-diverse eco-systems. With an experienced boatman, you will be able to see monkeys, crocodiles, and a wide variety of birds, all the while massive ships glide past on their way to one of the two seas. Moreover, the lake was stocked some years ago with Peacock Bass which have flourished. Fishing is allowed and encouraged on the Lake, whether you practice catch and release or simply catch what you eat.
Pipeline Road: a 2 to 3 km stroll through a pristine jungle. Along the hike, there are several observation areas and towers to birdwatch, listen to howler monkeys, see sloths, etc. One of the most biodiverse areas in the world. The entrance is $20/person (6-10am) or $15/person (after 10am until Close) and birdwatching guides can be arranged for $25/group.
Colon Coast via the Panama Canal Railway: To truly understand how deep Panama’s Caribbean roots are, requires a visit to the surrounding coast. Arranging driver to pick you up in the morning and to take you past the historical ruins of Portobelo and soft sand beaches of Isla Grande or the hidden white sand beach of Playa Blanca. Also, the Caribbean Coast is home to Panama’s best zipline tour! All these activities can fit into one full day.
For the history buffs, we suggest taking the early morning Panama Canal Railway to Colon through the jungle. It is best to arranging a chauffeur to meet you on the Colon side.
El Valle: Situated in the crater of an extinct volcano, El Valle provides an excellent day trip excursion. We suggest visiting the hot springs, the zip line tour, hiking along the water falls, and browsing through the market place. We also like the food at Bruschetta’s. (Note* you’ll need to bring a bathing suit and towel for the hot springs.)