The center is located at Punta Culebra in the Naos Island and is only 15 minutes from Panama City downtown. It was inaugurated in 1996 by the Smithsonian Foundation which is also its administrator. Punta Culebra Nature Center offers its visitors an open-air museum focusing mainly on marine life and education, conservation and interpretation of marine coastal environments. The territory of approximately 1 1/2 hectares has great natural wealth and offers to the visitors appropriate infrastructure among others exhibition hall, audiovisual room, basin with different sea animals and observation terrace of the Panama Canal.
There are two trails through a tropical dry forest, a typical ecosystem of the Pacific side of Central America which is almost extinct today. This forest is a refuge and habitat for racoons, iguanas, birds of all kinds and armadillos, among others animals that visitors can admire as they walk around.
The rocky shore, the sandy beach and a patch of white mangrove forest have plenty of marine life which is best seen during low tide.
The sea life exhibitions show the magnificent biodiversity of Panamanian coastal ecosystems, particularly that of coral reefs from the Caribbean Sea and the Pacific Ocean.
A pool that is home to sea turtles and sharks who swim among other colorful fish.
Experience touching marine organisms such as sea stars, sea cucumbers, sea urchins and even stingrays.
As they walk through the natural trails and the exhibitions, visitors will receive information from specially trained naturalists about Smithsonian research.
A beautiful view of the Pacific entrance to the Panama Canal completes this educational experience.
Tuesday to Friday: 1:00 pm a 5:00 pm
Saturday and Sunday: 10:00 am a 6:00 pm