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Towering cityscape, green hills and beautiful blue waters combine in the port of Fuerte Amador in Panama, built on an artificial peninsula stretching out into the bay. Here long straight roads connect four small islands within view of Panama City, and provide the gateway to some truly remarkable wildlife and cultural history.
Sightseers can expect a wealth of attractions during their time in and around Fuerte Amador. Take a tour of the outstanding national park, and see the native tropical wildlife for yourself; alternatively, explore the ruins of modern Panama City's troubled colonial progenitor – or spend some time with the native Embera people in their traditional village, a world away from the city.
Soberania National Park
Take a tour of Panama's incredible Soberania National Park for a look at some of the most varied and colourful wildlife in the world. Here you'll find sloths hanging from the trees, bright yellow toucans pecking at fruit, and stark blue honeycreeper birds flitting between the branches. Take an open-air carriage on the aerial tram and you'll have the chance to see this remarkable ecosystem from high above, where you might get a closer look at the monkeys, bugs and bright green tree frogs that inhabit the canopy.
Don't miss the chance to see the Embera people for an experience of traditional life in Panama. Here in this secluded thatch-roofed village, life has changed little in centuries. Here people wear similar body art to the Maori people of New Zealand, and bright garlands that you might expect to see on Hawaii – combined with a rich and unique heritage of music, dance and crafts. You might well find yourself eating and dancing with the locals during your visit, too – making this excursion the perfect opportunity for a cultural exchange during your time in Central America.
The Viejo is Panama City's oldest quarter, filled with the ruins of Spanish conquistador buildings that date back to the early 16th century. This World Heritage Site is filled with museums and monuments, churches and tumble-down walls which chart the original Panama City's difficult past – where fire, natural disaster, slave rebellion and marauding pirates brought the original settlement to its knees, and forced its eventual relocation to form the modern-day city.
Visitors around Fuerte Amador itself will find a great choice of boutiques and souvenir stalls around the shopping centres, particularly when it comes to clothing, jewellery and fragrances. Browse the selection of shops dotted around the marina, where you'll find a host of handicrafts and keepsakes – or buy traditional native dishes and jewellery from the Embera people during your time in their village.
As a tourist-centric modern port on the edge of a big city, you'll find no shortage of beautiful places to eat. Take a seat in a modern restaurant for some bright, unique nouvelle cuisine – or wander round the stalls and stores along the marina for more traditional Panamanian eats like corn-dough bollo buns, tortillas or even a slice of rich ‘tres leches' cake.
Up to 77 FREE shore excursions
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