Do you hear the drums? The Congo Queen and her court are inviting you to a dance! Just a few hours away from Panama City on the Caribbean Coast, you will find the picturesque coastal town of Portobelo. Portobelo has a history full of gold and pirates, however, its vibrancy and lifeblood today come from the Congo culture, kept alive by the descendants of the African slaves who were brought to Panama by the Spanish. The Congos have preserved their own culture and popular traditions through special celebrations, music-filled rituals, and theatrical dances, which are usually staged to commemorate mother earth and enslaved ancestors. Thanks to their uniqueness, the Congo traditions were declared Intangible Heritage of Humanity by UNESCO in 2018. Don’t miss the chance to celebrate life (and sometimes even death) with the Congo when you visit Portobelo!
If you’re looking for more activities that celebrate Panama’s diverse culture and unique history, the Cultural Heritage Experience is where you’ll find them.