San Lorenzo Fort

Situated on a cliff overlooking the mouth of the Chagres River are the ruins of the ancient Spanish Fuerte San Lorenzo (San Lorenzo Fort). The fort was build in 1597 as part of the fortification to protect the coast from pirate attacks. In 1671 the fort was captured by pirate Henry Morgan and used like a base for his attack on Panama City. The fort was defended by 314 Spaniards and only 30 survived the attack. On his return, Morgan completely destroyed the fort. Six year later the Spanish rebuild the fort with additional cannon batteries and barracks. This new fort was destroyed by the British Admiral Vernon in 1740. In the 1750 the fort was rebuilt again and this structure can be seen in present days. Fort San Lorenzo was declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1981

Thank of its setting on the top of cliff the views are breathtaking – azure Caribbean, rocky coast and and the vast green jungle behind. The fortress is surrounded by thick rain forest proper for observing wildlife, tropic plants, monkeys, toucans and other animals and birds. The Protected Area San Lorenzo with its jungle, mangroves, reefs and beaches is excellent to practice variety of outdoor activities.

Como Llegar

To visit San Lorenzo it is better go by car because you have to go pass 18 km from the entrance of San Lorenzo Protected Area to the fort. Form Panama city first drive to Colon, When you reach town limit you have to turn left. It is the most difficult point of the ride, because there are not traffic sights. Drive to the Gatun Locks and there cross the Panama Canal. On the road you can see a signs indicating the way to San Lorenzo and to Fort Sherman Marine. The drive to Fort Sherman ex-military base its about a 15 minutes drive trough the National Park. At the gate they will ask for your ID or passport number and will write down the tag number of your vehicle. Two kilometers further is small ANAM office where it is necessary to pay the entrance to the park (B/ 1.50 Panamanians, foreigners B/ 3.00). Finally drive approximately 4 km more and you reach the Y cross-road, turn right and 200 meters later you'll come out of the jungle in the parking area for the fort.

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