Friday, July 11, 2014

Colombia/Panama Day 14: Panama City- Panama la vieja y el parque natural metropolitano

I wasn't quite sure what to do with myself while in Panama City.  I have two full days here now, and two full days next weekend.  I decided to start with some history, at el museo Panama Viejo.  El museo y las ruinas que estan alli are in the location where Panama City was originally founded (después de la conquista, claro).  As it turns out there are remnants of ancient civilizations that are found here as well, under the ruins from the 1600s.  Inside the museum are artifacts excavated at the exact location where the museum is currently.  As I walked around I couldn't help but wonder what else is located under the museum and ruins.  But I guess you could say that about any building anywhere in the world.  

Panama Bay, the bay that surrounds Panama city (I am only taking a picture of a small part of it), is a very important food resource for millions of migratory birds annually.  

Panama City is overwhelming to say the least, for a city of just over a million there sure are a lot of skyscrapers.  This is the view to the south.  

This is the view to the north.  

This is a view of me.  

One of the most intact ruins from the original Panamanian City is el Convento de la Concepción.
Panama la vieja was a major center for merchants and landowners, but was destroyed by an invasion in 1671 and was never rebuilt.  Instead the city was relocated 8 km away, to Casco Viejo. 

The other fairly intact ruin is part of the three story cathedral.  It is interesting to see the juxtaposition of the old buildings with the new buildings, side by side but a different way of life apart.  

After viewing what used to be Panama City I thought that getting a break from the city would be nice.  I went to el parque natural metropolitano.  It is basically a city park, maybe one of the coolest in America. It protects 232 hectares of land and is one of the few tropical dry forests on the Pacific Coast that remains. It is home to 284 species of trees, 45 species of mammals, 254 species of birds, reptiles and amphibians.  And it is just a five minute drive away from the city.  

1 comment:

  1. I, too, love the old with the new. Wonderful photos of life in a big City. What a bunch of variety you are seeing on this trip. How exciting.

    My favorite view is YOU.


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