Nature travelers find more than they bargained for on Panama’s Quetzal trail

Vacationers heading to Central America might have a few Panama attractions in mind when they first book their excursion, yet nature-lovers would be remiss if that list didn’t include a trek down the Quetzal Trail. Located within Volcan Baru National Park, the Quetzal Trail is perhaps the most famous trek in the country and offers travelers a chance to see one of the region’s most beautiful birds – the resplendent quetzal.

The trail, which most travelers will pick up outside of the small village of Boquete in the Chiriqui province, is a beautiful natural pathway that is flush with local plant and animal life. During the spring, the local flowers bloom in earnest, granting the region an unforgettable opulence that helped earn it a reputation as the “valley of flowers.”

Birders will definitely want to bring their binoculars along for the journey as well, as the resplendent quetzal are truly a sight to behold. These bright green and red birds have long been celebrated for their lustrous plumage, even earning the species an important role in Mesoamerican mythology.