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Chagres and Fort San Lorenzo
==16th and 17th centuries: Discovery and fortification==
In 1502, during his fourth and final Voyages of Christopher Columbus voyage, Christopher Columbus discovered the Chagres River.
By 1534, the Monarchy of Spain had, following its conquest of Peru, established a rainy-season gold route over the isthmus of Panama Camino Real de Cruces most of which consisted of the Chagres River. The trail connected the Pacific port of Panama Viejo Panama City to the mouth of the Chagres, from whence Peru’s plunder would sail to Spain’s storehouses in the leading Atlantic ports of the isthmus: Nombre de Dios, Colón Nombre de Dios, at first; and, later, Portobelo. (The dry-season, overland route the El Camino Real (Panamá) Camino Real connected Panama City with those ports directly).
Attracted to the treasure, pirates began attacking Panama’s coast around 1560. To protect the Atlantic terminus of Las Cruces Trail (Camino Real de Cruces), Spain built Fort San Lorenzo at the Chagres River’s mouth. From 1587 to 1599, the fortifications evolved into a sea-level artillery battery.
In 1670, buccaneer Henry Morgan ordered an attack that left Fort San Lorenzo in ruins. He invaded Panama City the following year, using San Lorenzo as his base of operations.
In the 1680s, the Spanish constructed a new fort above the water. Set on a cliff overlooking the entrance to the harbor, the fort was protected on the landward side by a dry moat with a drawbridge. During this time, the town of Chagres was established under the protection of the fort.
- Departure Day
R44 Helicopter departure
60-minutes helicopter tour over Colon.
Overhead views of notable attractions such as Panama Canal, Port of Colon, San Lorenzo Fort, Chagres River.
Round trip, if you need to hold the helicopter, the waiting time will be charged at $100 per each hour. The first wait hour has not charge, it will be free by courtesy of PANAMA HELICOPTER TOURS
Tours are available Monday to Sunday from 7:00am-5:00 pm
Maybe you will be sharing the helicopter with other tour passengers;
Please note that the flight time can vary due to a number of circumstances; average flight time is between 7 to 9 minutes