4 Great Hiking Locations In Panama

By BobbyRica | July 13, 2010

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Outdoor adventures are popular in Panama. There are many outdoor activities that anyone can plunge into. For people who can’t take extreme sports, hiking is the best way to go. But where’s the best hiking locations in Panama? I have all of them here for you.There are many hiking areas in Panama, but there will always be the best and the most reliable. And when you do plan to go for some serious hiking, I do recommend any one of these great sites. These sites are the Parque Nacional Darien, Parque Internacional La Amistad, Parque Nacional Volcan Baru, and the area surrounding the Fortuna reservoir.

Coffee experience at Parque Nacional Darien.

This could be the place where you can have the most refreshing hiking experience. Nothing beats hiking in rain-forest jungles with the aroma of caffeine. You read it right—coffee! It’s not Starbucks but it’s a wide cultivated area of coffee beans.Aside from the coffee buzz you get here, you also get to visit a World Heritage site. Because of its amazing environmental features, UNESCO hailed Parque Nacional Daren as such. The fact that it has 450 bird species and various trails like the five-mile Pirre Mountain Trail make it one must-see visit.If you’re looking for more challenges within the park, go the Pirre Mountain trail that leads to a cloud forest site. It’s another refreshing view. You can also take the Boca de Cupe trail which is a 2-day hike. It’s the only exit way from the park by land.

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Most talked about Parque Internacional La Amistad.

As a site of international interest, this is probably one of the hiking locations you wouldn’t want to miss. Hikers all over the world know about this place. This is a piece of land that both Costa Rica and Panama share stewardship with. It is the only largest protected site in Costa Rica. It spans 1,950 square kilometers with a crossover border of 2,070 square kilometers over Panama.  When theplace to visit is this expansive, your experience will certainly be more than the ordinary hiking. This is a protected wildlife preserve which means that you can expect lots of amazing species of plants and animals from the mountainous terrain. Expect to see thousands of different animals including margay and tapirs to appear at the distance, or even right above you! Hikes usually last up to 12 hours while mountain climbing would eat up between two to five days.

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Go camera crazy at Parque Nacional Volcan Baru.

You will be able to see birds migrating towards the south for winter. Panama has been one of the itineraries of over 225 species of birds. It includes the Timberline Wren and the Hairy Woodpecker. These species are mostly noticeable at Sendero Los Quetzales. It’s also one of the most remarkable hiking trails. If you’re a camera bug, then you’ll have a field day taking photographs of these unique creatures. There is so much to see and take photos of (and I just don’t mean the cute guides), time will pass by so quickly. The park covers a wide variety of life zones due to both climatic variations and unique topography.Another feature this place is the set of rocks where the park is situated. Taking photos of rock formations at Sendero Las Tres Rocas trail is the most fun part. It also has a lookout platform for you to have a panoramic view. You can stretch your hands wide as if holding the entire park.

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Hot tripping around Fortuna reservoir.

Perhaps the most unique experience so far, hiking around this area is the most hottest. And I mean that both literally and figuratively. It’s the only location among the four choices that entail lava from the volcano. One of the most popular sites is Arenal, a volcano near the reservoir and a botanical garden. You can enjoy the atmosphere in the tropical forest that surrounds the active volcano. The volcano pours down lava every night. You better be hiking at this place during the day then. After exploring the area, you can do water adventure after hiking. There’s a nearby lake where you can windsurf and sail. It’s a great counterbalance to hiking.
What makes a hiking in Panama great? It’s not really the number of birds you get to see. It’s not even about where it is located. It’s not the length of time you do it. It’s the whole wonderful experience you get to have while hiking.

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