El Valle de Anton, also known as Crater Valley, is located within two hours from Panama City. It is a fertile valley of 18.3 km2 filled with square trees, bright flowers, beautiful mountain surroundings, cool temperatures, immaculate gardens, thermal hot springs, square trees, waterfalls and golden frogs. It has been a favorite vacation spot among Panamanians for years and in more recent years, a touristic destination as well.
The valley rises 600 meters above sea level and has a virtually perfect climate (temperatures average 18° C), and everything in the town from the plants, to the animals and people seem to exude health and well being. The near perfect climate makes El Valle an excellent location for those looking for recreation and relaxation.
In this awesome biological diversity of the beautiful mountainous region of El Valle, there are numerous species of flora characteristic of the tropical humid mountain forest, the home of wild fauna with endemic species such as the Golden Frogs, which are unique in the world and a famous attraction that can be found at the El Nispero.
According to geologists, El Valle is the crater of an extinct volcano and due to this fact, the volcanic hills and rocks provide a stunning natural landscape. A great number of orchids and the identification of floral fossils such as the Zamia (a living fossil of the Panamanian flora), highlight the high bio-diversification and biological importance of the area.
A major attraction to El Valle is the "Sunday Market" held every Sunday morning in a market hall on the main road, which is filled with artisans who come down to town from the surrounding mountains to sell their goods. The Sunday Market in El Valle is considered one of the best supplied in the region. It is an excellent opportunity to buy local handicraft such as ceramics, wooden trays, wooden bowls, woven baskets, hats, paintings on wood, hammocks, molas, carved and painted totumas (cups made from squash) and trinkets made from acorn, as well as vegetables, fruits, ornamental plants, flowers, and orchids. Prices are usually negotiable. It opens from 7:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
In addition, El Valle offers several waterfalls that are beautiful at anytime of the year. One of the most visited is El Macho, a five-minute drive from the center. The El Macho Waterfalls is a spectacular 35 meter water fall of the Amarilla Creek. It is an ecological refuge due to its exuberant vegetation and its natural beauty. The waterfall is open from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., 7 days a week.
El Valle also has some hieroglyphs engraved on rocks that represent access trails, anthropomorphous images, and symbols that have yet to be deciphered by local and foreign researchers. These rocks are located just a few minutes from the town of La Pintada, and at the foot of La India Dormida – a hill that looks like the silhouette of a sleeping Indian girl.
Aside from other activities such as hiking, climbing, bird watching and exploring, El Valle's climate and natural beauty offers a spectacular and enjoyable environment for everyone that visits it.
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