Local Celebrations And Holidays: What To Expect In Panama - Answers & Video

Local Celebrations And Holidays: What To Expect In Panama

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Local Celebrations and Holidays: What to Expect in Panama

Panama is a vibrant and diverse country in Central America known for its rich culture and traditions. The country boasts a wide range of local celebrations and holidays throughout the year, each offering a unique experience for both locals and visitors. From colorful parades to traditional dances and mouthwatering cuisine, Panama’s celebrations are a true reflection of its cultural heritage. In this article, we will explore some of the most popular local celebrations and holidays in Panama, providing you with an insight into what to expect and how to make the most of your visit.


  • Street Parties: Carnival in Panama is a vibrant and energetic celebration filled with street parties and parades. Expect lively music, colorful costumes, and dancing in the streets. The main festivities take place in Panama City, Las Tablas, and Penonomé.
  • Queen Elections: One of the highlights of Carnival is the election of the Carnival Queen. Contestants from different regions of the country compete for the title, showcasing their beauty, talent, and charisma.
  • Water Festivities: Water fights and water balloon battles are common during Carnival. Be prepared to get wet as locals and tourists alike engage in friendly water fights to beat the heat.
  • Traditional Dances: Folkloric dances such as the “Diablicos Sucios” and “Congo” are performed during Carnival. These dances showcase the cultural diversity of Panama and are a treat for the eyes.

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Independence Day

  • Parades and Flag Raising Ceremonies: Independence Day, celebrated on November 3rd, is a significant national holiday in Panama. The day is marked by parades, flag raising ceremonies, and patriotic speeches.
  • Fireworks: Fireworks displays light up the sky in major cities across the country, creating a festive atmosphere. Locals gather with their families and friends to enjoy the mesmerizing displays.
  • Cultural Exhibitions: Cultural exhibitions showcasing traditional arts and crafts, music, and dance are organized during Independence Day celebrations. It’s a great opportunity to immerse yourself in Panama’s rich cultural heritage.
  • Food Festivals: Food stalls offering traditional Panamanian dishes are set up during Independence Day celebrations. From hearty stews to delicious empanadas, you can indulge in the flavors of Panama.

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Easter Week

  • Religious Processions: Easter Week, also known as Semana Santa, is a time of religious significance in Panama. Religious processions are held, with participants carrying statues and crosses through the streets.
  • Beach Getaways: Many Panamanians take advantage of the long Easter weekend to escape to the country’s beautiful beaches. Popular destinations include Bocas del Toro, San Blas Islands, and Contadora Island.
  • Traditional Foods: Traditional Easter foods, such as torrejas (sweet fried bread) and carimañolas (yucca filled with meat), are enjoyed during this time. Don’t miss the opportunity to savor these delicious treats.
  • Religious Services: Churches hold special religious services throughout Easter Week, including Masses and processions. It’s a time for reflection and spiritual renewal.

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Colon Day

  • Parades and Commemorative Events: Colon Day, celebrated on November 5th, commemorates the founding of the city of Colon. Parades featuring marching bands and cultural performances are held in Colon City.
  • Historical Exhibitions: Museums and historical sites in Colon showcase exhibitions highlighting the city’s history and cultural heritage. It’s a great opportunity to learn about Panama’s past.
  • Traditional Music and Dance: Traditional music and dance performances take place during Colon Day celebrations. Experience the vibrant rhythms and colorful costumes of Panama’s diverse cultural groups.
  • Local Cuisine: Sample delicious Panamanian dishes, such as sancocho (a hearty chicken soup), during the festivities. Colon’s culinary scene offers a variety of mouthwatering options.

Christmas and New Year

  • Christmas Lights and Decorations: Panama City comes alive during the Christmas season with dazzling lights and festive decorations. The iconic Cinta Costera is adorned with colorful displays.
  • Fireworks: Welcoming the New Year with fireworks is a tradition in Panama. Spectacular displays can be seen across the country, lighting up the sky at midnight.
  • Family Gatherings: Christmas and New Year are times for families to come together and celebrate. Festive meals, gift exchanges, and joyful gatherings are common during this period.
  • Midnight Mass: Many Panamanians attend midnight Mass on Christmas Eve to celebrate the birth of Jesus. Churches are beautifully decorated, and carols fill the air.


Panama’s local celebrations and holidays offer a glimpse into the country’s rich cultural tapestry. Whether you’re dancing in the streets during Carnival, witnessing the patriotism on Independence Day, or enjoying the religious traditions of Easter Week, each celebration provides a unique experience. Immerse yourself in Panama’s vibrant culture, savor the delicious cuisine, and embrace the warmth and hospitality of its people. Plan your visit to coincide with these celebrations and create unforgettable memories.


– visitpanama.com
– panamainfo.com
– pt.yourpanama.com
– lonelyplanet.com

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