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The Enchanting National Parks, Marine and Forest Reserves of Chiriqui, Panama

Chiriqui is blessed with a unique topography and breathtaking sights. The province of Chiriqui is home to five of Panama's beautiful national parks and marine and forest reserves. In Chiriqui's cloud forests, you can literally touch the clouds. The La Barquete Beach Wildlife Refuge and the Chiriqui Gulf National Park, on the other hand showcases Chiriqui's beaches and diverse marine life. Listed below are these five attractions.

La Amistad International Park

Panama and Costa Rica share La Amistad International Park. It's the first ever in the world of its kind in terms of international cooperation in management. It is divided equally between the two countries. This vast cloud forest within the Cordillera de Talamanca is so unspoiled that parts of it are even unexplored!

Getting to La Amistad International Park is easier if you travel via Panama. A large part of La Amistad International Park is in Bocas del Toro province while Chiriqui shares part of it.

There's a dizzying array of plants and animals in La Amistad International Park and bird watchers just love the place. There, you can also find rare orchid species and other flowers.

  • 221, 000 hectares – the total nominated area of La Amistad International Park

  • 1,200 to 3,100 meters – the range of elevation.

  • 2 hours – the time it takes to travel from David, Chiriqui in Panama.

Volcan Baru National Park 

The Volcan Baru National Park is a park built around and named after the only Volcano in all of Panama, the aptly named Volcan Baru. On a clear day, you should be able to see both the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea if you're up in Volcan Baru. It is also Panama's tallest peak and has a cloud forest near its peak.

Volcan Baru is paradise in the purest form of the word. It's volcanic soil makes it an ideal place for plants and animals to grow naturally. Thus you will find fruits, flowers and vegetables abound. Bird watching is also a favorite among tourists. There are bird species that can only be found in this area.

On the foot of Volcan Baru National Park, you'll find the towns of Volcan, Cerro Punta on the west and Boquete on the east side. These towns offer everything you'll ever need while touring this tropical wonderland.

  • 14,325 hectares – the area covered by Volcan Baru National Park

  • 3,475 meters – the highest point in Panama, Volcan Baru's peak.

  • 30 minutes – David to Boquete by car.


Fortuna Forest Reserve

The Fortuna Forest Reserve is considered to be one of Panama's best protected forest reserves. It was created to protect the man-made lake used for generating electricity. It covers 19,500 hectares of mostly cloud forest. Its altitude varies from 1000 to 1500 meters and is home to a huge number of animal species including bats and jaguars. The Fortuna Forest Reserve is densely planted with various tropical trees.

It is called a Hydrological Reserve which simply means it protects the water source for the hydroelectric power plant. The Fortuna Forest Reserve is jointly managed by the National Authority for the Environment (ANAM) and Panama's leading power provider, EGE Fortuna, S.A.

The La Barqueta Beach Wildlife Refuge

The La Barqueta Beach Wildlife Refuge also know as the Playa de la Barqueta Agricola Wildlife Refuge is just a short half hour drive from the capital city of David. The wildlife refuge is about 6000 hectares of mangroves, beaches and wetlands.

The La Barqueta Beach Wildlife Refuge protects important nesting sites for several species of sea turtles as well as several species of mammals, birds and reptiles.

Chiriqui Gulf National Marine Park

Established in 1994, to preserve 14,740 hectares of the delicately balanced ecological system. With its vast mangrove swamps, coral reefs and white sand beaches, this destination will surely become popular in no time. It's just a short distance from Boquete and the small town of Bocha Chica is the

The island of Parida is the biggest among all the islands in this archipelago and island hopping is a fun way of exploring the smaller islands. If you want to soak in the sun, this is the place to be. The Chiriqui Gulf National Marine Park provides a complimenting contrast to the highlands of the province.

The Chiriqui National Marine park also abounds in diverse marine life. You will see an astonishing array of fish and marine plant species. Scuba diving, snorkeling and sport fishing or deep sea fishing are just of the activities to enjoy.



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