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Staff Picks

A Sugar-Sweet Season

Santa Rosa Sugar Refinery

If your travels bring to you Panama between mid-January and mid-March, make your way to the vast Santa Rosa Sugar Refinery just west of Aguadulce where grinding season is in full swing. More than 4,000 workers harvest upwards of 6,500 tons of raw sugarcane by hand, then send it through 20-ton grinders that refine it into about 1.5 million pounds of the sweet stuff –per day, every day (except Sunday). A great outing in close proximity to Panama City hotels, the round-the-clock, grinding-and-refining spectacle is quite a sight to behold. While there, also take a look at the museum housed in a replica of the 1911 home of the mill’s first owner. Exhibits there trace the history of sugar cane production. We promise, you’ll never look at your sugar bowl in quite the same way.

Address: Aguadulce