It has been a while since my trip to El Valle de Antón in Panama. But didn’t really had time to write this text, but here we are. It was more or less a spontaneous trip decision but I am glad that I went there. Got there by driving all the way. The drive is not to bad and it’s pretty easy to find. Just follow the Carretera Panamericana over the Puente de Las Americas towards Costa Rica until you hit Ruta 71. There is also a sign, but it’s very small. Better pre-plan on the map to find your way. Anyway it’s a great adventure going there and you will enjoy it. For the trip i would suggest a full day to enjoy and relax. If you wanna know more about that place, keep on reading… As mentioned the drive is not to bad and takes you probably 1,5-2 hours, depending on your location in Panama City. There are also buses going there and tours. Keep your eyes open for flyer’s at the airport or your hotel, if you don’t have a car. If you got a car, its cheaper to drive yourself there. You don’t need any special 4×4, just a regular car will do it. Since it was all so so spontaneous for me, I didn’t have time to pre-plan but as I stopped at a store to get coffee, I checked for caches in El Valle and found two. One Earthcache and one traditional cache. If you are going for this caches you might wanna bring along a towel and your swim wear.
The Earthcache is about the local hot springs in El Valle de Antón and since you have to enter the hot springs anyway (pay 2,25$) to get in there, you might use the chance anyway to enjoy the hot springs. But you can keep on reading, no hidden spoilers for your earthcache here…
The traditional cache is also pretty cool, you have to hike a little bit to get to the final coordinates but it’s worth it. But other than geocaching, I came here for some zip-lining. I never did it before…I was all excited about it. To get to the zip-lining spot just follow the signs to “Chorro el Macho”. Once there you can also book a guided tour around the waterfall or just go in by yourself, which is cheaper or as I did – just go for the zip-lining part. It costs you around 50$ for that adventure and you get all the equipment right at the entrance. There will be also a guy walk you up there and explain everything to you. The walk takes about 20-30 minutes and you have to climb up pretty steep terrain, but believe me it’s worth it. Once at the first zip-line the guide will teach you how to do it. He will go first and after him you and your party, there is also another guide up there, who will go last. It is a 4 part zip-lining adventure and it starts off pretty easy and keeps getting more inclined. I was so excited, that I even forgot to brake as I was told but no worries nothing happened.
The way up:
My favorite one is the third zip-line, which goes across a little river right next to the waterfall. This is also the most inclined one of all four zip-lines. Here you get attached to a second line, where you will be stopped after 3/4 of the distance, from there you have a great view of the river and waterfall. The last one is an easy one again. After you finished at the fourth zip-line the guys will take the equipment back down and you can walk back to the waterfall on your way back down to the entrance and take some pictures.
I really enjoyed that zip-lining so much, I will keep looking for more of them. If you have a go pro camera or something similar you definitely should bring it.
After the crazy zip-line adventure I was hungry on my way through the little town I also discovered a little market where you can buy souvenirs or fruits and not to far from there is the Restaurante Pekin. They serve pretty good chinese food. My last destination here in El Valle was the Zoo: First you think it’s pretty boring when they show you chicken, cats and some local plants. But it will get very quick more interesting, you will get to see Parrots, Crocodile, Jaguar and also Iguanas. It’s worth seeing it and it only costs 5$.
Tell me your opinion…