Ride to see the sloths
Start your weekend as many Panamanian families do, on the Amador Causeway. This man-made peninsula, built from rock unearthed during the Panama Canal’s construction, connects what was once a series of small islands. From Moses Bike Rentals (bicycle, $4 an hour), cruise the causeway’s protected bike highway — stopping to gawk at massive container ships at the canal’s entrance or to suck down a pipa fria (iced coconut water) — to the Punta Culebra Nature Center ($8 adults, $2 children). (Most attractions charge different admission fees for citizens and foreigners.) A lesser-known alternative to the Frank Gehry-designed Biomuseo nearby, this Smithsonian-run center offers acres of tropical dry forest where sloths sprawl overhead, child-sized iguanas guard the fountains and crab-eating raccoons prowl. The indoor exhibits display moray eels, phosphorescent anemones and Panama’s famous, and highly poisonous, golden frog.