Walk the historic streets, float the famous canal, and spend some time exploring the beaches, rain forests, or indigenous villages of the surrounding countryside—here are some ideas on how to spend three days in Panama City.
Metropolitan National Park (Parque Natural Metropolitano)
Avenida Juan Pablo II, Panamá City, Panama, 0843-03129
It’s easy to forget you’re in the middle of a city of nearly a million people as you walk through the tropical forest of Metropolitan National Park (Parque Natural Metropolitano). Tree dwellers here include sloths, monkeys, tree frogs, toucans, and green iguanas. Two main trails—the Nature Trail and the Tití Monkey Trail—lead through the park to form a single loop, including a 511-foot-high (155-meter-high) lookout with panoramic views across the surrounding city all the way to the Miraflores Locks. Tours of the park offer added insight into the natural history and ecology of the area and a better chance at spotting wildlife thanks to a pair of experienced eyes.
Things to Know Before You Go
Metropolitan National Park (Parque Natural Metropolitano) is a must-visit for outdoor enthusiasts and animal lovers.
Guided tours of the park typically last three to four hours and include admission and round-trip transportation.
Don’t forget to bring your camera, binoculars, and insect repellant.
Wear comfortable shoes suitable for walking over uneven surfaces, and bring along a rain jacket for unexpected showers.
How to Get There
The easiest way to get to Metropolitan National Park (Parque Natural Metropolitano) is to take a taxi, though it’s also possible to take a bus from Albrook Station bound for Gran Terminal and get off at Universidad de Panamá. Those touring the park with a guide have the benefit of round-trip transportation.
When to Get There
While the warm climate means you can visit Metropolitan National Park (Parque Natural Metropolitano) throughout the year, the dry period between December and May tends to be best for spotting wildlife, as many of the park’s trees shed their leaves.
Crane of the Forest Canopy
In 1990, the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute installed a construction crane in the heart of the park for research purposes. Today, visitors can take a gondola to the top of the crane for views of the jungle canopy from 148 feet (45 meters) above the forest floor.
Frequently Asked Questions
The answers provided below are based on answers previously given by the tour provider to customers’ questions.
What are the nearest attractions to Metropolitan National Park (Parque Natural Metropolitano)?
Attractions near Metropolitan National Park (Parque Natural Metropolitano):
What else should I know about attractions in Panama City?
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- Afro-Antillean Museum of Panama (Museo Afro-Antillano de Panama)
- Ancon Hill (Cerro Ancon)
- Casco Viejo
- Presidential Palace (Palacio de las Garzas)
- San Jose Church (Iglesia San Jose)
- Panama Interoceanic Canal Museum (Museo del Canal Interoceánico)
- Miraflores Locks
- Metropolitan Cathedral
- Panama Canal
- Bridge of the Americas (Puente de las Americas)
- Fuerte Amador Cruise Port
- Panamá Viejo (Old Panama Ruins)
- Plaza de Francia
- Punta Culebra Nature Center