Colon Day

In Panama, November is known as Independence Month, and there are many holidays that celebrate Panama’s independence. November 3rd celebrates the 1903 separation of Panama from Colombia, November 4th is Flag Day, and on November 5th people celebrate Colón Day.

Colón Day is a holiday that commemorates the persuasion of Colombian forces not to resist Panama’s separation and is named after the city of Colón, Panama. During this 3-day span of holidays, there are concerts, festivals, huge parades, and a lot of fireworks, all in celebration of independence and freedom.

The History of Colón Day

Colón, Panama, is a city that was founded in 1850 at the Atlantic terminus of the Panama Railroad. It was originally called Aspinwall, after one of the builders of the railway, but its name was changed to Colón in honor of Christopher Columbus.

In this city on November 5, 1903, the locals managed to convince war-weary Colombian forces not to march on Panama. If it weren’t for this action, it’s quite possible that the Colombians would have made a push and been able to gain a military advantage.

Some Quick Facts About Panama

Below are some quick facts that we’ve uncovered about Panama. Hopefully, everyone reading this will find them as interesting as we did.

  • Panama City has a rainforest within its city limits. It’s called Parque Natural Metropolitano.
  • Panama was the first Latin American country to adopt the U.S. dollar as its official currency.
  • The Panama Canal Railroad is one of the oldest operating railroads in the world.

Observing Colón Day

Colón Day is at the end of a three-day period of holidays that includes a lot of activities. People are usually off from school and sometimes work, and there are things to do all over Panama. There are concerts, fireworks, festivals, and parades that can block off entire streets.

Where is it celebrated?
Panama (National holiday)
When is it?
This year (2024)
November 5 Tuesday
Next year (2025)
November 5 Wednesday
Last year (2023)
November 5 Sunday