Panama - Camino Real Trek 8 days/ 7 nights

INFORMATION

The Camino Real Trek is an amazing and unique experience for everyone interested in being close to the nature. In this expedition you will forget the stressful everyday life and make unforgettable memories.
If the mossy river rocks, the gurgling translucent waters and the majestic, ancient trees could talk, they would tell epic stories of long mule trains hauling the King's gold, of dashing incursions by pirates against Castilla de Oro’s New World fortifications and many untold story tales. Long before human ingenuity and determination envisioned the Panama Canal as it is today ... long before steam engines pulled the first trans-continental railroad across Panama ... a vital and mysterious road laid of stone traversed this domain of defiance ... a throughway that was the scenario of astounding human drama; where courage, greed and cruelty shaped the early history of the world's crossroads ... el Camino Real.

DETAILED ITINERARY

Day 1: Arrive to Panama
On arrival to Tocumen International Airport in Panama City you will collected and transferred to your hotel. You will spend the night at Hampton by Hilton. 

Day 2: Historic Panama City – Local jungle village
Your morning begins with a welcome briefing with your expedition leader and your fellow trekkers, followed by a thorough inspection of your equipment for the hike on the Camino Real. Afterwards, visit the ruins of Old Panama City, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, which holds historical relevance to the area that you will explore in the upcoming days. Early afternoon drive to Madden Lake, where you board your motorized dugout canoes towards a small village where you will spend the night. You are greeted by the local villagers, who are proud to share their history and heritage with you. After an exciting day you will spend the night at the local village in jungle hammocks. Breakfast, lunch and dinner are included.

Day 3 through Day 5: Chagres National Park
You bid farewell to your new friends and continue your adventure in the Chagres National Park. This protected area was created in 1985 to preserve 130.000 hectares (320.000 acres) of rainforests as part of Panama’s conservation strategy and to help preserve the watershed, which provides all of the fresh water needed for the operation of the Panama Canal, as well as the drinking water for the two largest cities in the country. Along the way you will begin to uncover remnants of the original cobblestone of the fabled colonial route. As you skirt along the park´s boundaries you will come across peasant farms and hamlets and gradually enter the thicker and more pristine rainforest, where you run into vestiges of late 1800s manganese mines, including railroad tracks and locomotives encroached in the tropical vegetation that has taken over these relics. You cross the watershed divide of the Boqueron River over a low mountain pass into the Cascajal River basin as you head northwest towards the Caribbean Sea. You will spend 3 nights in hammocks at jungle camps Breakfast, lunch and dinner are included.

Day 6: Portobelo
After four days of trekking, you finally reach the outskirts of Portobelo where you will be transferred to your hotel, the final destination of the Camino Real on the Caribbean Sea. Set on a deepwater bay deemed easier to defend from the ravages of pirates, Portobelo was heavily fortified. For 150 years it was home to the famous trade fairs, when the Spanish treasure fleet came to collect the riches that traveled across the isthmus on mule trains from Panama City and to leave merchandise brought from Seville for distribution throughout the Americas. Unsurprisingly, the wealth concentrated in the royal warehouses here was an irresistible target for the pirates who scoured the Spanish Main. At the end of this amazing day you will spend the night at Casa del Rayo verde o Casa Congo in Portobelo. Breakfast, lunch and dinner are included.

Day 7: Bay of Portobelo - Panama City
This morning is free for you to explore the town and the historic sites or to hire a local boat to shuttle across the bay to one of the many beaches of Portobelo. In the afternoon you will drive to Colon City to catch the train back to Panama City. The Panama Railway was inaugurated in 1856 and was the first train to cross the continent from one ocean to the other. The completion of the trans-isthmian railroad was inspired by the Gold Rush when pioneers were in need of a fast and safe way to get to California. The train ride is 1 hour long from coast to coast and skirts the Panama Canal. A farewell dinner is prepared for this evening and you will spend the night at Hampton by Hilton. Breakfast, lunch and dinner are included. 

Day 8: Depart Panama
Today you are picked up at the lobby of the hotel 2.5 hours prior to your scheduled departure flight and transferred to Tocumen International Airport to catch your flights home. Breakfast is included.

INCLUDED SERVICES
  • Lodging in Panama City
  • Lodging in Portobelo
  • Meals as specified in the itinerary
  • All land and water transportation within Panama as specified in the itinerary
  • All airport/hotel transfers on scheduled arrival and departure dates
  • Guides’ services and expenses
  • Park, museum and related entrance fees
  • Jungle hammocks and tarps
  • Purifying water filters
NOT INCLUDED SERVICES
  • Flights
  • Meals not specified in the itinerary
  • Alcoholic beverages
  • Personal equipment
  • Gratuities and extras in hotels (telephone calls, laundry, room service)
  • Trekking Poles (available for rent at US$30 + 7% tax per pair)
  • Travel insurances
IMPORTANT NOTES

We recommend to bring the following equipment: 

  • Binoculars
  • Camera with extra batteries and sufficient storage capacity
  • Flashlight with extra bulb and batteries
  • Bathing suit or bathing shorts
  • Insect repellant 
  • Sunscreen
  • Hat
  • 1 duffle bag / small suitcase 
  • Water bottle
  • Sandals, sneakers, hiking boots
  • Lightweight and quick dry cotton clothes
  • Rain gear
  • Windbreaker
  • Money in small denominations
  • Toiletries
  • Personal medications
  • Masking tape for flea protection / capture


  • Prices and itineraries are correct at the time of publication. However, they are subject to change due to tidal/weather or local conditions, availabilities or factors beyond our control. 
  • Travel within Chagres and Portobelo National Parks is accomplished with great preparation on the part of our staff in order to make our guests as safe and comfortable as possible. Potential guests are expected to make themselves aware of the nature and demands of this trip and prudently judge whether or not they are suited for this type of experience. A desire to experience the outdoors, a spirit of adventure, and willingness to sacrifice creature comforts are essential qualifications. Participants should be physically fit and able to hike at a moderate pace for up to eight hours in a day. Medical limitations and concerns should be brought to the attention of MEET THE GLOBE several weeks prior to the program’s departure date.
PRICES AND OTHER INFORMATION

Minimum number of travelers: 4

You do not have to present the minimum number. We will take your reservation and add it to others to create a group.

We would like to inform you that the trip is physically and mentally extremely challenging and excellent physical conditions are required.  The trip consists of full day trekking five to eight hours per day over muddy, steep, slippery slopes and mostly through rivers. You have to expect to be wet for most part of the day and carry all your gear. Therefore, you will be exposed to variable climatic conditions and rugged traveling conditions. 

  • Price per person:       1.725 €
  • Single supplement: 185 €

There is no discount for children as this tour is not planned for children below the age of 12. From the age of 12 the full price is charged.

DEPOSIT AND CANCELLATION
  • Cancellations made with more than 30 days-notice are subject to a full refund of the deposit. 
  • Cancellations made between 30 and 15 days prior to the first day of the tour are subject to a 50 % refund of the total costs of the tour. 
  • Cancellations made within 15 days of the first day of the tour are not subject to refunds. 
  • All cancellation requests must be done in writing. 
BOOKING

Our web page is currently being equipped with an automated booking process. Until this update is finished, we gladly receive your reservation request by email at info@meettheglobe.com.

We require the following information:
Name of the trip:
Travel date:
Number of travellers:

We will contact you as your personal travel advisor as soon as we receive your email.