08/10
Activity
4 days
Duration
Panama Province
Location

Trek from Pacific to Atlantic on a cobblestone colonial road.  With just four days in the jungle, this amazing trek is ideal for those who wish to explore the depths of a pristine setting.  You will hone jungle skills that will help you thrive and enjoy your future treks in any tropical rainforest environment.

Prices based upon a minimum of 4 participants.
PICK UP At your hotel in Panama City at the appropriate time.
WHAT TO WEAR

Trekking boots and light leisure clothing, rain jacket, sleeping mat, trekking poles, backpack, water bottle, mosquito repellent and sunscreen. A hat and sunglasses are recommended.

HIGHLIGHTS
 Ocean to Ocean
 Scenic Rainforest Surroundings
 Expert Jungle Guide
All Meals
 Porters (not personal)
 Use of jungle hammocks
 Satellite monitoring services
INCLUDED
Private transportation
All meals
Equipped naturalist guide
Entrance fees
NOT INCLUDED
 International airfares and taxes
 Domestic airfares and taxes
 Alcoholic beverages and meals not specified in the itinerary
 Optional activities
 Gratuities and departure tax at the airport

This tour allows the participant to cross the Isthmus of Panama along the original route of the Camino Real, beginning in Old Panama on the Pacific Ocean, trekking through the dense jungle of the Alto Chagres to reach Portobelo in the Caribbean. This four-day trekking has expedition character and requires very good physical condition from the participants. The night before departure, we will held a meeting to explain details of expeditions in the jungle, animals, safety, and also what to carry and what not (the trekker carries his day pack, while the tent, food and personal belongings are carried by porters). The challenge of this hike is not the altitude, but the humidity and temperature of the tropical climate. Participate in this expedition really allows to experience and appreciate the work of the historical characters like Francis Drake and the unknown drovers of the mule trains, who crossed this road in the past. The first night we spent at a peasant village, where we will better understand their life situation within a national park and the problems of deforestation and conservation. The second day we start hiking the path of the Camino Real, soon we find a well-preserved segment of it in the mountains of the Chagres National Park and enjoy spectacular scenery. The third day we walk mostly in primary forests below old giant trees up to the headwaters of the Rio Boquerón, which pours down its valley over countless waterfalls. The fourth day we arrive finally at Portobelo in the Caribbean Sea, where between the walls of the Spanish fortifications remains the rich heritage of Afro-Caribbean populations.

The sheer beauty of this trek, makes it one of the most unique adventure destinations in Panama.  All of this topped with the fascinating history of the Camino Real, which goes back to the times of the Spanish Conquistadores of the New World, when this cobblestone path helped shape the economies of Spain and Europe.  Over the centuries, however, numerous pirate attacks on the Spanish Main and the overall decadence of their empire virtually erase all evidence of this fabled thoroughfare, and today only a few remnants can be found obscure by the tropical vegetation.

1

Boqueron Arriba

Early this morning we board our private van headed for the village of Boqueron Arriba, north of Lake Alajuela, located in one of the most important areas of the Panama Canal Watershed.  Travel time is about two hours.  We hike up to a ridge fringing the Boqueron River, where we immediately encounter archeological evidence of the ancient Camino Real. After approximately 8 Km (5 miles) we arrive at the small village of Santa Librada. We get acquainted with our jungle camping equipment and spend the night there, ready for an exciting day tomorrow. (L, D)
2

Hiking Charges National Park

 we begin our journey hiking through farmland and along some scattered thatch huts. Slowly the farms give way to less developed areas until we reach the pristine rainforest of the Chagres National Park. We cross the Boqueron River a myriad times, and take rest stops to enjoy and interpret the natural landscapes as well as the history, especially where the are obvious signs of the Camino Real. These stops also allow us to adjust to the heat and humidity of the tropical jungle. It is not unusual to take a dip in some of the crystal-like pools that form along the river bends. The weather is typically sunny in the morning and cloudy in the afternoon with rain showers that last only a few minutes. So being wet is a fact of life in these realms. After 10 Km (6 miles) of hiking we reach an idyllic spot in the jungle where the river splits into three small waterfalls forming a wonderful little pool flanked by a wide beach. We’ve christened this spot as “Ambush falls”. The setting is so inviting that we have no other choice than to stay here and camp. By this time we all have done quite a decent workout and deserve to rest and enjoy the beauty of the place in relative comfort. (B, L, D)
3

Camino Real

 The next morning we get ready to traverse the most dense and technical section of the trek. We hike through very pristine and lush primary forest; climb a ridge following the pass that the Spaniards cross centuries ago carrying their precious cargo of silver and gold. We camp in the jungle again, and spend the last hours of daylight telling stories of Spaniards and pirates before retiring to a well-deserved slumber.. (B, L, D)
4

Portobello

 The fourth and last day, after a delicious cup of jungle coffee and a hearty breakfast, we break camp and proceed to trek 13 Km (8 miles) to the outskirts of Portobelo. Here we enjoy a great lunch, accompanied by a cold beer. We can shower and change into dry street clothes and ride our van back to Panama City. (B, L)

NOTE AND DETAILS: This tour leaves early in the morning and involves a daily hiking of 10 – 15 kilometers.  This trail requires good physical condition and will take you through rivers and muddy, slippery, rugged and uneven rainforest terrain. It is recommended to bring another set of sandals and clothes in your backpack. You will have to sign a release of responsibility form.

Note: For further information, contact us! This program can be tailor-made for your needs and interests.