Veraguas, Panama Vacation Guide
The Province of Veraguas is located in the center of Panama and it is the only province with access to both the Caribbean and the Pacific Ocean. The capital of Veraguas is Santiago, founded in 1636, the forth largest city in Panama. Most of the people in this attractive region are dedicated to farming - Veraguas it one of the largest producer of grain and has numerous coffee and sugar plantations and its livestock is said to be Panama's finest! Santiago and its surroundings are among the fastest growing areas at the moment, mainly due to real estate development and a vast potential for tourism. Santiago is also a possible halfway point between Panama City and David and you will find a modern bus depot with buses that go in both directions; and decent hotels to spend the night.
Veraguas is home to 40 islands, among them Coiba Island which is the biggest of Central America. Then there is Cebaco Island in the Gulf of Montijos, Isla Gobernadora and many more. Tourists can also find a great variety of flora and fauna, as well as many traditions, customs and legends. Veraguas also offers abundant nature, forests, mountains, beaches and more than 200 varieties of orchids. Visitors can also spot more than 400 species of birds, and mammals, reptiles and insects. Surfers will especially be delighted with beaches such as Playa Catalina, Mariato, Malena and Torio.
Don't miss the Cerro Hoya National Park, a remote and difficult to reach National Park that protects 30 endemic plant species and hosts animals such as white-tailed deer, ocelots, pheasant, bore and the Green Macaw.
On Coiba Island you will find primary forests, beaches, mangroves and coral reefs. The waters surrounding Coiba Island are full of fish and marine animals and the island is surrounded by one of the largest Pacific coral reefs of the Americas, making it one of the best destinations of the Americas to dive.
If you like cooler temperatures you should not miss Santa Fe, small town in the mountains and home to many orchids. You can reach Santa Fe in just about one hour from Santiago and will have a superb view of the lands of Veraguas and the Gulf of Montijos.
The small town of Atalaya is about 15 miles from Santiago and famous for Religion Tourism. Every year in February a pilgrim leads to the Basilica Menor San Miguel Arcangel which is a Historic Monument. More than 200,000 Panamanians flock from far to get to Atalaya for these religious festivities.
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