Service Learning Experience in Panama
- Multi-day Eco Tourism, Community service, and environmental education at our National Park Eco Lodge
- The bulk of the itinerary will be spent doing our community service work—hands on construction project in the local community
- Note: funds for service project included in trip price
- Cultural exchanges and community activities
- Tour local arqueaological site
- Waterfall, forest hikes
- Cultural immersion
- And much more!
- Tour the Miraflores Visitor Center and visit the Panama Canal!
Explore the politics, history, and modern day marvel of the Panama Canal and Panama City. Participate in an immersive, multi-day community service project near the ‘Valley of Flowers and Eternal Spring.’ Learn about the environment and sustainable practices of our eco lodge in the area
Panama offers both urban and rural world class attractions and activities.
Student trip itineraries are completely customizable for your group, desires, and needs.
Day 1 - Travel to Panama
Board our group flight to Tocumen International Airport. Your Evolve Tour Leader will meet you at the airport, excited to spend the upcoming weeks together! Transfer to our secure lodging by private bus, and get settled in for the big days ahead. Enjoy dinner and overnight at the Albrook Inn in the district of Ancón this evening.
Day 2 - Travel Day
We will pack up our bus and make our way towards David District through the long country of Panama. Our destination for the next few days at an Eco Lodge in Cerro Punta. Tucked away in the highland cloud forest, we will be staying at a beautiful eco-lodge accommodation inside the primary cloud forest of Volcan Baru National Park. Our eco lodge offers all the beauty of the cloud forest, with the added bonus of the area having no biting insects nor venomous snakes. Get comfortable and situated in our new home after our travel day.
Days 3 - 6 - Community Service, Environmental Education, Cultural Interaction, & Adventure Tourism
The upcoming days will be focused primarily on our community service project(s). The community service component will be coordinated in conjunction with the local community, and Evolve Tours.
The service project will be based in the local community of Guadalupe. We will be working with a local school(s) in the area. Students will oversee a construction project, to help address needs of the local school and community. Examples of such projects may include: building a new classroom, refurbishing the library, building a playground, etc. In addition, working at the school will allow us the opportunity to mingle with the local school children, teach in the classroom, organize sport events, and more.
During our time at the eco-lodge and in the community, we will maintain a focus on environmental education and sustainability. We will monitor local practices –garbage production and removal, recycling programs, food production & consumption, etc. – to compare with our lives & practices back home. We will take note of improvements which can be brought back to Canada with us, while also keeping our eyes open to potential improvements in environmental & sustainable living practices that can be implemented on the ground moving forward.
We will also have the opportunity to enjoy the beautiful nature of our environment, cultural activities, and adventure tourism. Further activities to be included in the itinerary, in the afternoons following our service work and/or at selected times, may include:
- Working on a local farm learning sustainable farming practices
- Education and participation in permaculture practices of the eco lodge
- Tour of an organic local coffee plantation
- Salsa lessons
- Cheese making workshop
- Birding: Wake up early to spot the local Wilson’s Warbler, Striped-tailed Hummingbird, Bathing Red Start, Female White-throated Mountain-gem, and more
- Moderate 1.5 hour rainforest hike with three waterfall viewings
- National Park and rainforest guided walks, exploration, and education
- And more!
Day 7 - Hiking
Today will be left as a flex day, depending on energies and needs on the ground. Finish up the service learning project (if applicable), participate in a community celebration of the project, visit local coffee farms, or other appropriate group activities.
Day 8 - Gaudaloupe
Today will be a day of physical endurance and natural beauty on our last full day in Panama.
We will hike one of the most famous trails in all of Panama; the Sendero los Quetzales. Our full day hiking adventure begins in the foothills of Volcan Baru, Panama’s highest volcano. Located within Baru National Park, the sendero los Quetzales runs 9 kms across the volcano beginning in the town cerro punta and ending near boquete. Along our hike we will have expert local naturalist guides with us for the day, packed lunches and plenty of water. Experience the marvelous cloud forest and try to spot the elusive quetzal bird, after which the tail is named and the reason for which many people visit Panama!
Day 9 - Panama Canal and Homeward Bound
Early wakeup, say goodbye to our friends at the community and the beauty of our eco lodge. We will travel by bus to the District of David. Board our domestic flight to Tocumen International Airport.
Visit the Panama Canal: we will make our way to the Miraflores Visitor Center, which offers a number of exhibits and movies introducing and explaining the incredible engineering marvel that is the Panama Canal. Most importantly, the Visitor Center offers observation decks, where we can watch mammoth ocean liners maneuver the narrow waterways of the canal as gates open, close, and fill up along the way. We will also have time here to eat lunch at the restaurant and/or snack bar while overlooking the canal.
Return to Tocumen and board our connection onto our international flight(s). Welcome back home after a meaningful and awesome service and eco-tourism tour to Panama.
AirfareRoundtrip group airfare to Panama
BusPrivate coach bus as needed for duration of tour
Eco LodgesEvolve works with eco-lodges which promote sustainable living practices
Hostel/HotelCentrally located, student-friendly hostels/hotels
Three meals a day included in tour. Meals at locally owned and run restaurants serving authentic cuisine sufficient for all appetites.
With 5,637 kilometers of coastline and more than 1,518 islands, there are no shortage of beaches available in Panama.
Places You’ll Visit
Participate in a service project within the local community.
Enjoy an overnight hike in the National Park of Volcan Baru.