Portobelo National Park

Portobelo National Park, Panama is 105 kilometers from Panama City and is World Heritage site with 70 kms of coast with palm trees and rich coral reefs. The park was created in 1976.

Portobelo National Park covers 34,846 hectares. The national park protects the headwaters of the Rivers: Cascajal, Guanche, Piedras, Iguana, Iguanita and Brazuelo. The highest point in the park is the 979-meter Cerro Bruja which is on the continental watershed. There are also two hills called Cerro Pan de Azùcar an Cerro Palmas and a narrow mountainous strip within the northern boundary of the Panama Canal Basin.

Average annual rainfall is 4,800 mm and average annual temperature varies from 27° C on the coast to 24° C in the mountains. Premontane rainforests, very moist tropical forests, very moist premontane forests and moist tropical forests can all be found.

The Portobelo Park's 70 kilometers of coastline runs from San Cristobal Bay in the North and Buenaventura Bay in the South, with beautiful stretches of coral reefs, mangrove swamp, coastal lagoons and beaches.

Four species of marine turtle, including the hawksbill (Eretmochelys imbricate), come to nest on these beaches. The iguana (Iguana iguana) is found in large numbers.

The most common species of mammals is the manglatero cat. On the coasts, particularly in the mangrove swamps, there are crab-eating raccoons (Procyon cancrivorus). In the rivers otters (lontra longicaudis) can be found, and in the most remote forests there are groups of white-throated capuchin monkey (Cebus capucinus).

With birds you will see osprey (Pandion haliaetus), common black hawk (Beteogallus anthracinus) and the tiger heron (Tigrosoma fasciatum). Also the largest kingfisher in Panama, Ceryle torquata, and the plumbeous kite (Ictinia plumbea)

Scuba divers recommend Drake's Island, Salmedena Reef, the Three Sisters, and Playa Blanca.