Friday was our day to do whatever we wanted while while Emma worked. She fixed us up with a driver for the day and we sure felt spoiled. We had this really nice guy with a comfortable vehicle who knew his way around the city, and he was all ours to drive us around and take care of us. How cool is that!
Emma had mentioned that there was a zoo with a harpy eagle so I thought it might be interesting to check that out. Our driver knew just what we were talking about, and it wasn’t long before we were at the Summit Zoo in the Gamboa area a bit north of the city.
It’s beautiful! I did some reading later and learned that the area is a botanical garden started in 1923 to research how different plants and trees would do in the Panama climate. The first teak in America was grown here. In the 1960’s a small zoo was added and now has about 300 animals. The whole property was transferred to Panamanian ownership as part of the transfer of the canal and it’s properties. There is a lot of land and many areas where people can relax and families can play, and even on this weekday it was being enjoyed by quite a few people.
This is only a small taste of the zoo and the grounds. It was definitely worth the short trip up there.
After the zoo area, our driver suggested we get a bit of lunch at the Gamboa Rainforest Resort. I had seen some Oferta Simple deals on this place and was curious to see it, so lunch sounded like a good plan. It is definitely beautiful and the view overlooking the water and canal is spectacular. It’s expensive to stay there though and lunch was so-so, but I’m really glad we got to see the place.
Since we were so close we decided to drive by the Titan, that huge floating crane that is parked nearby. It has an interesting history starting with Hitler, so check the link if you want to know a bit more.
By now it was time to head back to the city and Emma’s school for the final performance of their musical. Little did I know that the delights of the day were far from over. These were just young kids, 7-10 years old, but the quality of their performances rivalled others I’ve seen from much older students. There was no detail overlooked so singing, costumes, acting, lights, and every other aspect of the performance was first rate.