emerald telephone number

Free from a BT landline. Mobile and other operators may charge.

Panama

Panama maybe famous for being a tax haven, but a holiday here will make you realise how it’s also a haven for rest and relaxation.

It is blessed with clear turquoise seas, cloud forests and aromatic coffee farms – making it the ideal chill-out zone.

The country, which is on the isthmus linking Central and South America,

is also a big hit with culture vultures. Visitors can explore the ruins of Spanish forts on the Caribbean coast or take a boat trip deep into indigenous territories in a dugout canoe.

There is little chance of boredom setting in as there is lots to see and do. Travellers can soak in the spray of towering waterfalls near highland Santa Fé  or idle on a wilderness beach in Península de Azuero. Be sure to also check out the Panama Canal, which is a famous feat of human engineering that cuts through its center, linking the Atlantic and Pacific oceans to create an essential shipping route.

If you seek a bit of adventure, then this is the place for you. This tropical country has two long coasts, which makes for a pretty big playground. Just imagine zipping through rainforest canopies, swimming alongside sea turtles or trekking to sublime cloud-forest vistas.

You can even go scuba diving with whale sharks in the Pacific, snorkel the rainbow reefs of Bocas del Toro or set sail in the indigenous territory of Guna Yala.

Although it’s natural beauty is abundant, so is its sophisticated city life.

In fact, Panama City is culturally diverse and boasts modern skyscrapers, casinos and nightclub, which is in contrast with colonial buildings in the Casco Viejo district and the rainforest of Natural Metropolitan Park.

There is plenty to do in the city including pedalling through the coastal green space, enjoying an avant-garde performance or exploring its historic Casco district, which has been renovated.