Camino Real - King´s Highway • Colonial Spaniards Gold Route • Rainforest • Epic History •  Treking
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 HIGHLIGHTS

  • Pacific to Atlantic 
  • Camino Real de Panama
  • Epic story of Conquistadores
  • All-inclusive package
  • Rainforest Conservation
  • Age: 16 and up
  • Gateway: Panama city

 

  Caminoreal

 Trek from Pacific to Atlantic, on a cobblestoned colonial road through the primary rainforest of Chagres & Portobelo National Parks, used by endless mule caravans carrying about 200 tons of silver from Peru and Bolivia a year to the trade fairs of Portobelo, which attracted famous pirate and privateers like Francis Drake.

 

It’s the forgotten precursor of the Panama Canal, where the mix of indigenous, afro-descendent and mestizo population aspires for sustainable way of living and conservation of surrounding rainforests: experience history and be part of local communities quest for sustainability in tropical rainforests.This tour allows the participant to cross the Isthmus of Panama along the original route of the Camino Real, beginning in Old Panama on thePacific Ocean, trekking through the dense jungle of the Alto Chagres to reach Portobelo in the Caribbean. This three-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 - up to 15 pounds per person). 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.

 


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ITINERARY

1st day:  Arrival to Panama

Transfer to your Panama City Hotel. Lodging at Hotel Marbella included. No meals included

2nd day:  Panama Viejo and Lake Alajuela

In the morning we visit the ruins of Panama Viejo located at the Pacific Ocean. Panama Viejo Ruins, the first city of Panama founded in 1519, was sacked by the English pirate Sir Henry Morgan in 1671 and destroyed by fire. In the afternoon we left the outskirts of Panama and arrive at Lake Alajuela. A boat will take us to a peasant village, far from modern life. In the communal house we enjoy a traditional dish and get to know their culture and traditions and how they pursue a sustainable way of life within Chagres National Park.Lodging at the peasant community (with tent and mosquito net). Includes breakfast, lunch and dinner.

3rd day: Camino Real

Early morning we start the hike on the Camino Real. We ascend onto the edge of the mountains, where we enjoy a marvelous panoramic view of the Chagres National Park. Then we follow the route of the Camino Real between rivers Pequení and Boquerón, until we found a well-preserved section of the Camino Real near the Quebrada Peluca.Hike Details: Distance 15.3 kilometers, up 250 meters, down 150 meters, duration 8 hours.Lodging in tents. Includes breakfast, lunch and dinner.

4th day: Camino Real

Today we walk mostly through primary forests in the headwaters of the rivers and Cascajal Boquerón. We walk under giant trees of the virgin forest on the banks of the river Boquerón where we observe numerous waterfalls.Hike Details: Distance 11.2 kilometers, up 170 meters, down 220 meters, duration 8 hours. Lodging in tents. Includes breakfast, lunch and dinner

5th day: Camino Real

Today we wander the last segment of the Camino Real toward the Caribbean. We walk along the river Cascajal in the footsteps of the Camino Real toward Portobelo.The Bay of Portobelo was discovered by Columbus on his fourth voyage. Later, it was the site of the famous fairs of Portobelo and the starting point of the Spanish treasure fleet. Due to these treasures, the pirate Sir Francis Drake attacked Portobelo, soon after he became ill and lies in a lead coffin somewhere outside the Bay of Portobelo.Hike Details: Distance 10.8 kilometers, up 75 meters, down 175 meters, duration 5-6 hours.Lodging in Cabañas Las Cholitas, Includes breakfast, and lunch.

6th day: Isla Grande

We will finish our expedition relaxing in Isla Grande, about an hour from Portobelo. Enjoy sun and swimming in the Caribbean. Late afternoon transfer to Panama City or Colon. Lodging at Hotel Marbella. No meals included.

7th day: Panama Departure

Transfer to Panama International airport
Includes breakfast

FREQUENT ASKED QUESTIONS

EQUIPMENT AND SERVICES PROVIDED

  • Tents or Jungle hammocks
  • First Aid Kit
  • Complete Kitchen equipment with all cutlery, plates, cups
  • All denoted breakfast (5), lunch (4) and dinner (3)
  • Ground transfers and Lodging

WHO CAN GO ?  

Minors must travel with a responsible adult.  To participate in some activities the minimum required age is 16 years.
Private groups with some customization can be arranged.

WHAT SHOULD YOU TAKE ALONG ?

You have to bring your sleeping bag (summer sleeping bag with lowest temperature of 18º
Celsius is fine) and your camping mattress (air rest, thermarest or similar)

WHAT SHOULD NOT BE BROUGHT ?

At day trips leave object than can be deteriorated by water or valuables like jewels, cash, credit cards, etc.

About camp sites

We set up overnight camps at farm houses on the edge of primary rainforest, for two important reasons, first, we do not want to cause impact within primary rainforest, second, to support local farmers so with tourism they will have an alternative income to farming in sensitive rainforest areas. When we arrive in the afternoon at campsites, we select sites for tents and hammocks, you will be responsible to set up the tent provided for you, supported by our staff, then the staff starts preparing food and you have time for a bath in the river and relax. Then we have lunch and time to talk about experiences of the day.

EQUIPMENT CHECKLIST

  • Day backpack for personal belongings during the tour
  • Clothing: breathable lightweight outdoor clothing such as Columbia (one set of clothes with pants, long sleeved shirt, socks for hiking, a set pants and t-shirt for sleeping, 2-3 sport underpants and 2-3 quick dry-shirts, rain poncho, hat or cap, camping towel.
  • Shoes: a pair of comfortable sandals (eg trekking sandals) and a pair of hiking shoes (trekking shoes).
  • For overnight: light sleeping bag (up to 18 ° C is sufficient), camping mat (eg Thermarest or similar), if desired inflatable pillow
  • Dry-bags to to keep the clothes dry in humid air, small dry-bags or zip-loc for money and documents
  • Photography Equipment: camera, enough memory chips, battery/akkus, travel plug and charger
  • Hiking or trekking poles
  • Other: sunscreen, sunglasses, pocket knife, sewing kit, headlamp, sunburn relief, blister plasters (eg Second Skin), insect repellent, Band Aids.
  • Drugs: personal medicines

PRICE:

Double Occupancy
2 participants USD $ 1,900.00 each
3 participants USD $ 1,575.00 each
4 participants USD $ 1,400.00 each
5 participants USD $ 1,275,00 each
Single Supplement $ 85.00

SEASON:

This package is good  year around.