Bank of Panama
Panama City (Ciudad de Panamá) is the capital of the Republic of Panama as well as the Panamá Province. It is The Republic of Panama’s Largest city and it is located at the Pacific entrance of the Panama Canal.. Panama City is the political, administrative and cultural center of the country.
In recent years, Panama City has become one of the most important financial and touristic centers in the Americas. Panama City was chosen to be the American Capital of Culture.
Panama City is located between the Pacific Ocean and many tropical rain forests. The Parque Natural Metropolitano (Metropolitan Nature Park), stretching from Panama city along the Panama canal, has several unique bird species and other animals such as tapir, puma, alligators, etc. At the Pacific entrance of the canal is the Centro de Exhibiciones Marinas (Marine Exhibitions Center), a research center for those interested in tropical marine life and ecology. Centro de Exhibiciones Marinas is managed by the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute.
Tropical forests around Panama city are vital for the functioning of the Panama Canal.
These forests provide the canal with the watershed required for its operation (a rare example of a vast engineering project in the middle of the forest which actually helped preserve that very nature). Due to the importance of the Canal to the Panamanian economy, tropical forests around the canal have been kept in an almost pristine state. Along the western side of the Canal is the Parque Nacional Soberania (Sovereignty National Park) which includes Summit botanical gardens and a zoo. In this national park, the best known trail is the Pipeline Road, very popular among birdwatchers.
The Panama Canal ( Canal de Panamá) is a major ship canal that traverses the Isthmus of Panama in Central America, connecting the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans. Construction of the canal was one of the largest and most difficult engineering projects ever undertaken.
It has had an enormous impact on shipping between the two oceans, obviating the long and treacherous route via the Drake Passage and Cape Horn at the southernmost tip of South America. A ship sailing from New York to San Francisco via the canal travels 6,000 miles, well under half 14,000 miles route around Cape Horn. Although the concept of a canal near Panama dates back to the early 16th century, the first attempt to construct a canal began in 1880 under French leadership. After this attempt failed and saw 20,000 workers die, the project of building a canal was attempted and completed by the United States in Panama in the early 1900s, with the canal opening in 1914. The building of the 77 km (48 mi) canal was plagued by problems, including disease (particularly malaria and yellow fever) and landslides. As many as 27,500 workers are estimated to have died during construction of the canal.
Hard Rock Cafe Panamá
Since opening, the canal has been enormously successful, and continues to be a key conduit for international shipping. Each year more than 14,000 ships pass through the canal, carrying more than 203 million tons of cargo. By 2002 about 800,000 ships had used the canal altogether.
The canal can accommodate vessels from small private yachts up to fairly large commercial ships. The maximum size of vessel that can use the canal is known as Panamax; an increasing number of modern ships exceed this limit, and are known as post-Panamax vessels. A typical passage through the canal by a cargo ship takes around nine hours. 14,011 vessels passed through in 2005, with a total capacity of 278.8 million tons, making an average of almost 40 vessels per day.