It's Carnival time in Panama from Feb. 9th through the 13th. It's one of the most important historical celebrations of Panama which means big family gatherings, parades, floats, queens, music, dancing, and partying for 5 days before Ash Wednesday every year. The biggest party happens in Panama City along the cinta costera and into Casco Viejo where the parades and festivities are held.
The history of Carnival in Panama goes back to the colonial era (1513 - 1821) when people would dress in costumes of conquistadors, slaves, and natives reenacting battles then parade the King and Queen down the city streets through lively dances and celebrations.
Carnival has evolved today into a more vibrant celebration led by the Queen lasting over several days then closes at dawn on Wednesday when the Queen leads the final parade called "the burial of the sardine." This final parade symbolizes the end of the festivities, the beginning of lent, and for sure a lot of people with major hangovers.
While the biggest party is undoubtedly in the city, many small towns around the country host smaller versions of Carnival with their unique traditions and festivities so, it's a great time to be in Panama if you love to party. And if you're like us and want to avoid the party, here in Morrillo it's pretty chill. However, it is also a popular beach holiday when many people prefer to flee the city and spend time together on the beach.
Embrace the celebration and partying or flee to the tranquilo beach life with us. Either way, witnessing the cultural celebrations of Panama like this is a fascinating way to spend time traveling.
Your Friends in Morrillo,
Cari and Ryan Mackey
Owners and Hosts
Morrillo Beach Eco Resort