Search This Blog

About Me

My photo
Panama, Panama, Panama
Greetings from Panama! My name is Marina Ehrman and I have been a professional tour guide and promoter for Panama Tourism and Travel Company since 2005. I love what I do and am proud to share what my country has to offer. It is filled with endless leisure and commercial attractions, friendly happy people who open their doors to all visitors. Panama is a country of incomparable natural beauty with a variety of tourist attractions, beautiful beaches in the Pacific and Caribbean. The tropical climate year round with its diversified flora, fauna and indigenous groups make it one of the most important of Ecotourism in Latin America. I invite you to know our country’s history, culture and also enjoy the cuisine, folklore and traditions that only a place in the world can provide………Panama! Contact me and I’ll organize your visit and will be happy to welcome you in Panama. For more information on Panama, follow my Facebook page and my blog. Visit

Bocas del Toro: Starfish Beach


Famous for its abundance of starfish (you will literally encounter hundreds of them in this beach), Starfish Beach is a must visit destination of the Bocas del Toro Archipelago. Starfish beach is located on Colon Island, on its north-western side (opposite side of Bocas Town). Even though it can be reached by bus from Bocas Town (30 minutes), most tours that visit Bird Island (about 30 minutes from Bocas Town by boat) make a stop at this beach, either before or after lunch. It's about a 20 minute boat ride back to town from Starfish Beach.
Due to its location, its waters are very calm during most of the year, except during certain times in November and December when the swell comes up from the north. Its crystal clear waters and abundance of starfish make it a big favourite amongst visitors of all ages. Definitively one of the most beautiful beaches in Bocas del Toro.


Bocas del Toro: Bird Island

Swans' Cay, also known as Bird Island is birders paradise. Here you will find the only known nesting place in the Caribbean of the Red-billed Tropic Bird (Phaeton aethereus). Swans Cay is a rocky formation approximately 70 meters long, with a rounded quarter moon shape, pierced by two openings through one end, and rises 55 meters at the highest point. On the southern side, sheltered from the northeastern trade winds, there is a small sandy beach below a higher level area. Bushes and other vegetation cover the summit, and there is a small clump of coconut palms at the low end. A designated bird sanctuary, Isla Pajaros, also has brown booby (Sula leucogaster etesiaca), the brown pelican (Pelecanus occidentalis carolinensis), the frigate (Fregata magnificens) and many types of gulls and terns.

Boat used for Panama Canal transit

The Isla Morada...A Ship With Much History

The Isla Morada is surrounded by a fascinating history, long before transporting tourists across the Panama Canal. It was designed as a luxury megayacht for Boston millionaires. It was Built by Lawley & Sons, the company Cox & Stevens. All in wood, was built in the shipyards of the East Coast of the United States, and began sailing in 1912 with the name Santana. It had five luxury bedrooms, a lavish dining room, a library and was home to a crew of seven sailors. Among its owners was a very special one, the most famous gangster in history, the legendary Al Capone.

In the years of World War II it was requisitioned by the United States Navy, later to be acquired by a sailor who lived in Florida, which re-christened with the name of Isla Morada. It arrived in Panama in 1960 and served as a hotel ship anchored off Piñas Bay during the construction of the Tropic Star Lodge, the world famous sport fishing resort.
With capacity for 100 people, complete sets of Signs and Lighting, Help Communication System, Navigation lights properly installed and operational, and Fire Systems First Aid Kit. The conditions of the hull, machinery and electrical installations are periodically reviewed and are appropriate for making the spacecraft trajectories.

The ship has the following life-saving appliances:
  • 6 bags with capacity for 132 lifeguards people.
  • Life jackets for 165 people.
Its dimensions are:
  • Length (L): 96.00 mts.
  • Beam (width): 19:00 mts.
  • Depth (draft): 5.00 mts.
  • Gross tonnage: 94.00 tons

The second boat we have is the Fantasia del Mar with a capacity for up to 434 people.

It was built in Booth Bay Harbor, Maine, E.U.A. by Eastern Shipbuilding Corp.

The Fantasia del Mar has the following life-saving appliances:
  • 22 bags jackets with a total capacity of 440 people
  • Life Jackets for 440 people
Its dimensions are:
  • Length (L): 35.66 mts.
  • Beam (width): 8.69 mts.
  • Depth (draft): 3.23 mts.
  • Gross Tonnage: 465.14 tons

The third and last boat  is the Tuira II with a capacity for up to 492 passengers with 2 spacious floors.

It was built in the USA by Willey Manufacturing Co.

The ship has the following life-saving appliances:
  • 26 bags with capacity for 572 Lifeguard people
  • Life Jackets for 600 people
Its dimensions are:
  • Length: 35.80 mts.
  • Beam: 10.02 meters.
  • Depth: 3.26 mts.
  • Gross Tonnage: 227.00 tons

Main Plaza of Old Panama

Tour Suggested

The main plaza in Old Panama occupies an important place in the history of Latin American urban planning as one of oldest such space.
The quadrangle of Old Panama´s main plaza is small and slightly trapezoidal in shape. Records indicate that in 1671 it measured approximately 69 x 57 meters, a very modest size in comparison to the huge plaza subsequently laid out in Mexico and the Andean region. The archaeological excavation conducted a decade ago suggest the the original plaza was even smaller as the block on the north side, corresponding to the so-called Terrin houses, was reduced in size in the early 17th century  , thus providing 500 m2 of additional open space .
The plaza is presided over by the cathedral tower, located more or less at the center of the east side. Right of the cathedral stad the ruins of the old cabildo or council, a small building that had a two stored arade. the terrin house also had an arcade .  On the west side was a row of wooden house,  while the south side, where the prision is thought to have been located, is buried  beneath a modern building 

Map of Casco Antiguo

Tour Suggested

Old Panama: King's Bridge

The King's Bridge ( Puente del Rey) has legendary fame in Panama , comparable only to the cathedral tower in Old Panama. It is not only the best preserved bridge from the colonial period in the country but it also represents the spot where the Royal Road commenced, along which passed the mythical riches of Peru in route to Portobelo.
For a hundred years there was a wooden bridge over the River Abajo- the north terminus of Old Panama but in 1619 building works commenced on the present day stone structure , which has a single semicircular arch with exquisite worked ashlaring. No one knows when the bridge was completed, but apparently construction works lasted for years .

Tour Suggested

Visit Needle Island

This is a paradise island with a beach, surrounded by crystalline emerald, turquoise, blue and white waters. Ideal for a sunny day.

Isla Aguja is part of Carti’s archipelago.

It is located 10 minutes away from the parking lots in Carti and from the car terminal in Barsukun.

Isla Aguja is an area where marine life is protected.

Island services:

  • Freshwater tanks, showers
  • Unisex toilets
  • Solar based electricity
  • Restaurant



Enjoy de Rainforest at Soberania National Park

Soberania National Park is located within Colon Province and Panama Province. It is about 40 minutes from Colon, and 20 minutes from Panama City. Established as a national park in 1980, the park covers 55,000 acres (220 km2) The Charges River flows across the national park at the town of Gamboa.
There is a park headquarters with rooms for meetings and audiovisual presentations, a store, orchid site, and natural trails. In Aguas Claras there is a checkpoint and a forest ranger facility. There are three natural trails: the Charco, the Camino de Plataciones and Camino de Cruces. In the protected area there is a camping area. There 105 species of mammals, 525 species of birds, 79 reptiles, 55 amphibious and 36 species of fresh water fish, so the park is an important wildlife refuge.
The jewels of the park are Trail el Charco in Gamboa and the bird observation sites along Pipeline Road ( Camino del Oleoducto). The Camino de Cruces also crosses the park. This was the road that the Spanish used to transport gold overland from the Pacific to their ships in the Caribbean. Part of the paved section has been restored.
The annual mean temperature is 28º C the Caribbean slopes of the park. Rugged undulating hills and steep slops prevail, with a maximum height at Cerro Calabaza (85 meters above sea level).
The Park is made up of humid forest with its impressive trees like, cotton tree (ceiba), cuipo (Cavanillesia platanifolia), mahogany and guayacan (Tabebuia guayacan). The forest contains lots of lianas, epifitas and orchids and the royal palm tress, fruit trees nance (Brysonima crassifolia), and wild plums.
Birds are particularly noteworthy here. On its best known trail, the Pipeline Road, the Audubon Society has for 19 years held consecutive world records in the annual census it organizes. 525 species of birds were recorded on just one day in 1996. Among the outstanding ones are the endangered crested eagle, the spectacular rofous-ventaul, ground- cuckoo, and colorful tragons like violaceous tragon, motmots, toucans, trogons, flycatchers, antbirds, woodpeckers, tanagers, and hawks. Among the rare bird species in the park are yellow-eared toucanets, crimson-bellied woodpeckers, sirystes, and rarely seen harpy eagles
Among the mammals you will fid jaguar, the white-tailed deer, ñeques, raccoons and herds of wild pigs. Various species of monkeys occupy the forest canopy, including the small mono titi , the evasive jujana , white-faced capuchin monkeys, mantled howler monkeys, Geoffroy's tamarins, two-toed sloths, three-toed sloths, anteaters, coatis, and agoutis. Green iguanas are also found in the park
Reptiles such as the babilus, the warty snake, amphibians such as the common toad or the salamander and fresh water fishes like the sabalo, pipon or the barbudo are to be found here


Portobelo National Park

Portobelo National Park is located within Colon Province. It is made up of 86,000 acres, 20% of which are marine areas. It protects both coral reef communities and coastal forest. This coastline includes important stretches of coral reefs, mangrove swamps, coastal lagoons and beautiful beaches, where every year four species of marine turtle, including the threatened hawksbill, come to nest. Within the park is one of the more beautiful natural harbors of all Caribbean, the bay of Portobelo. The fortifications that are conserved surrounding the cove were named by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site in 1980. This means that the bay of Portobelo has been included on the list maintained by the international World Heritage Program administered by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization World Heritage Committee, whose goal is to preserve sites of outstanding cultural or natural importance to the common heritage of humankind.

The Centennial Bridge

The Centennial Bridge is one of only two major bridge crossings over the Panama Canal. The other major crossing being the Bridge of the Americas. Two small service bridges stretch across the Panama Canal at the Miraflores Locks and Gatun Locks; however these crossings can only be used when the lock gates are closed. The Centennial Bridge opened in 2004 and was constructed to alleviate the traffic on the Bridge of the Americas and replace it as the route of the Pan-American Highway.

The bridge was named for Panama's centennial, which occurred on November 3, 2003. The Centennial Bridge crosses the Panama Canal at the Gaillard Cut near the Pedro Migual locks and is about 10 miles north of the Bridge of the Americas.

Tour Suggested