After Old Panama was destroyed from the attack by pirate Henry Morgan, the city authorities decided to relocate it where they could build a protective wall and have a fresh water supply. They selected the site of today's Old Town, or the colonial city, because its rocky soil was perfect for the wall they wanted to build and a nearby creek called El Chorrillo flowed down from Ancón Hill.
This source of water to the city suddenly became part of the canal territory when treaties were signed that provided the Americans with eight kilometers on either side of the canal for their operations. Once Ancón Hill was back under Panama's control, the government hoisted a flag there the size of a basketball court as a symbol of sovereignty. That is why the hill has been declared a National Historical Heritage of Panama site.
Ancón is also declared a Protected Area and Nature Reserve of Panama for its exquisite flora and fauna found in the heart of the city.
Interestingly, the first boat to officially cross the Panama Canal was the Ancón steamboat.
Ancón Hill is located on the Pacific sector, next to the Bridge of the Americas.
How to arrive
- Car:If you want to drive up, go to the area of Balboa and pass behind the Panama Canal Administration building. Right after the Canal Administrator's house, turn right and pass through the Quarry Heights guard booth and on to the foot of the hill.
- On foot:If you enjoy outdoor activity and have the time, we recommend that you walk up the hill to have the chance to spot some forest creatures. If you arrived in car, parking is available at Mi Pueblito on the Avenue of the Martyrs. From there climb up the stairs that lead to the road that goes up the hill. Included with the parking fee at Mi Pueblito is the opportunity to visit these replicas of an indigenous village at the time of the conquest, the Afro-Caribbeans, and the first settlers of the isthmus and their peasant dwellings.
What to bring
- Comfortable clothing
- Water bottle
- Observation of flora and fauna
- View Panama City from a different perspective