Panama's Canopy Tower: Jan 20—27, 2018

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Departs: Panama City
Tour Limit: 14
Operations Manager: Erik Lindqvist
Download Itinerary: PDF (123.5 KB)

Route Map


Tour Leaders


Tony Nunnery

Tony Nunnery grew up in Mississippi, then moved to Texas, and graduated from Stephen F. Aust...

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Panama's Canopy Tower

Panama’s Canopy Tower— Photo: Canopy Tower

Species-rich rainforest birding around the incredible Canopy Tower ecolodge with access to famous Pipeline Road, the Chagres River, and the wondrous Panama Canal.

Panama is simply one of the finest birding destinations in the Neotropics, with a rare combination of easy access to extensive tropical forest, fine accommodations, good food and water, and a wealth of wonderful birds to be seen. Whether you are a seasoned tropical birder or someone who has never ventured south of the Rio Grande, this tour will be a delight.

Our base of operations will be the exciting Canopy Tower, a former United States radar station elegantly converted into one of the most unique and enjoyable ecotourist lodges anywhere. Perched above Soberania National Park, the tower offers great birding literally right out your window, including the chance to view gems like Blue Cotinga and Green Shrike-Vireo, both of which can be quite difficult to see from ground level.

There are a number of terrific birding spots nearby, ranging from wetlands and open country with Rufescent Tiger-Heron, White-throated Crake, and a profusion of orioles, tanagers, and hummingbirds, to the semideciduous forests of Parque Metropolitano, which hosts Whooping Motmot, Lance-tailed Manakin, Rosy Thrush-Tanager, and other species.

VIDEO: Panama with Victor Emanuel Nature Tours, Part I, Panama Canopy Tower, by Dick Walton

World-famous Pipeline Road is also on our itinerary, of course. Here, one can find puffbirds (including the handsome Black-breasted), trogons, motmots, parrots, and many other flashy tropical species in abundance. This is also among the best places anywhere to locate an army ant swarm, with stunning looks at Bicolored, Spotted, and the spectacular Ocellated antbirds among the possible dividends.

Green Shrike-Vireo

Green Shrike-Vireo— Photo: Kevin Zimmer

A day-trip to the cooler foothills of Cerro Azul, east of Panama City, should produce a dozen or more species of hummingbirds, including some that are rarely or never seen in the Canal Zone, as well as roving mixed-species tanager flocks that may also include such gems as Yellow-eared Toucanet, Stripe-cheeked Woodpecker, Spot-crowned Barbet, and Scarlet-thighed Dacnis.

Central Panama can also produce an excellent list of tropical mammals with Brown-throated Three-toed Sloth, Hoffman’s Two-toed Sloth, Mantled Howler Monkey, White-faced Capuchin, Geoffroy’s Tamarin, Kinkajou, and Northern Tamandua among the possibilities.

Good accommodations and food; all nights at one location; an optional excursion one afternoon to Miraflores Locks and the Canal Museum; easy to moderate walking on roads and trails; some midday breaks; two long days with early starts; warm and humid climate.

View our Panama’s Canopy Tower photo galleries:

Panama’s Canopy Tower 2001

Panama’s Canopy Tower 2006

Panama’s Canopy Tower 2008

Fall at Panama’s Canopy Tower 2009

Fall at Panama’s Canopy Tower 2010

Fall at Panama’s Canopy Tower 2011

Fall at Panama’s Canopy Tower 2012

Fall at Panama’s Canopy Tower 2013