Camino de Cruces, Colonial Trail that Connected the Atlantic with the Pacific
Nature Trail, full of Great Diversity and Incredible History. Long before the Panama Canal connected the Atlantic and Pacific oceans, the dense vegetation of the jungle, made the journey from coast to coast by land almost
Nature Trail, full of Great Diversity and Incredible History.
Long before the Panama Canal connected the Atlantic and Pacific oceans, the dense vegetation of the jungle, made the journey from coast to coast by land almost impossible. Camino de Cruces is an old road built by the Spanish colonizers of approximately one and a half meters wide made of stones that connected the area of the Chagres River and the newly founded Panama City.
—Times of the Spanish Colony—
Crossing this road was dangerous because of animals like snakes and others. There was also the risk of being mugged and killed at the hand of criminals, because of the many cargoes full of treasures, gold, silver and precious stones that came from South America, which were carried on horses and mules.
When the Spanish Empire weakened Camino de Cruces started losing importance and utility until the California mines were discovered and interest in the road was renewed, at that time the trip cost about $40.00, a fortune at that time.
—Live the History Today—
This road was abandoned with the arrival of the Transisthmian Railroad on January 28, 1855, and today belongs to Camino de Cruces National Park which was created on December 30, 1992. Now the Visitor has the opportunity to go back in time, to the days in which the region began to be explored by the first Westerners who discovered the natural beauty of this ecosystem.
The land route, between Venta de Cruces and the Old Town of Panama (approximately 36 kilometers), is one of the most important hiking trails in the country. It travels through a predominantly jungle environment, at a short distance from Capital City, with the same itinerary that thousands of adventurers followed for centuries. You can admire the natural beauty of this National Park and discover all about the great initial challenges faced by the Spanish colonizing forces. Here you will find families of toucans, eagles, poisonous frogs or wild boars while walking along this historic trail.
—Walk this Path in Several Stages—
Stage 1 – From Vents de Cruces to the intersection with Madden Avenue (10.82 km.)
Stage 2 – From the intersection with Madden Avenue to the intersection with the Via Centenario (10.67 km.)
Stage 3 – From the intersection with Vía Centenario to Puerta de Tierra (now the Municipality House), in the Old Town of Panama City (14 km.). (This section is mainly urban, with some obligatory detours through closed urbanizations, and currently crosses a sector under construction, due to the construction of the City of Health).
How to get to the Crossing Road?
On the road to Summit Garden, instead of turning towards Gamboa you must continue straight for about 4 kilometers, there is a site created by ANAM where the various maps of the trails are.