Panama Flag Day is celebrated on November 4 every year to commemorate the country’s second official liberation from external aggressors. Panama has the unique distinction of having two Independence Days. Panamanians have valiantly resisted colonization for centuries. Whether Spain, Colombia, or later the U.S. — several forces have tried to stifle Panamanian self-determination. The country has emerged stronger every time. Flag Day celebrates Panama’s official separation from the Republic of Colombia in 1903. But wait, there is more to the holiday. November in Panama is a month of celebration. The country parties for five days straight, of which Flag Day falls on day two.
History of Flag Day in Panama
Like several Latin American countries, Panama saw centuries of Spanish colonization. Its strategic location was vital for Spanish trade and commerce ambitions across the seas.
Panama’s indigenous peoples grew increasingly unhappy but a full-blown revolution seemed far-fetched. Three hundred years under Spanish rule passed before the winds of change arrived. Francisco De Miranda’s rousing calls for resistance paved the way for Venezuela’s liberation from Spanish rule. He inspired an entire continent to fight for self-determination. Much later, Simón Bolívar became a cultural and political icon, helping Latin American colonies like Panama become independent from Spain.
On November 10, 1821, the Panamanians called for independence from Spain. After a period of brave fighting, the country became free of colonial rule on November 28, 1921. A new Panama was born. Yet, the people worried about future repercussions from Spain and looked for further support. Panama allied with former colonies and joined the Republic of Greater Colombia.
For some years, Panama remained a part of ‘Gran Colombia’ — a republic that included countries such as Venezuela, Brazil, Ecuador, Peru, and Guayana. In the early 20th century, Panama eventually broke ties with Greater Colombia. At the decision’s core was a desire for autonomy over the Panama Canal construction. The U.S. wanted to negotiate with Panama directly, but Colombia opposed any possible treaty. Backed by the U.S., Panama declared independence from Colombia in November 1903. The agreement gave the U.S. complete control over the Canal. In return, the U.S. guaranteed the sovereignty of the new republic.
The Panamanian flag was designed by Maria de la Ossa de Amador and adopted on March 25th, 1925. She worked alongside her sister-in-law and niece to create three copies of the flag. When Panama gained its independence, all of these flags were flown. These first three flags were reproduced and dispersed widely.
Flag Day in Panama timeline
Revolution arrives and Panama carries the Spanish flag for the last time.
As part of the Republic of Colombia, Panama retains a degree of independence and its national flag.
Maria Dela Ossa secretly produces three copies of a newly designed national flag for distribution all over Panama.
The U.S. protectorate status over Panama ends.
Desecration of the Panama flag by Zionists leads to massive riots, paving the way for Panama to regain control of the Canal.
Flag Day in Panama FAQs
How is Flag Day celebrated in Panama?
Panama’s Flag Day on November 4 is an occasion to attend several activities and festive events. Official celebrations include flag-hoisting ceremonies, speeches, and processions. The people also take to the streets for a mega day of feasting and music.
What day is November 3 in Panama?
November 3 is Separation Day/Independence Day in Panama. On this day in 1903, Panama became a free nation, officially separating from the Republic of Colombia.
What is the most important holiday in Panama?
Fiestas Patrias. November is Panama’s most celebrated month as it is its independence month
What does the Panama flag represent?
The Liberal Party’s symbol is red. Together, the stars signify the new republic. The white star was meant to stand for peace and purity; the blue star represents the honesty and integrity of national life, and the red star symbolizes the rule of law.
What is a famous tradition in Panama?
One of the most eagerly awaited events in Panama is the Carnival, which lasts for four days before Ash Wednesday and culminates in the Entierro de la Sardina (literally, “Burial of the Sardine”).
Flag Day in Panama Activities
Watch the parade
It isn’t a celebration in Latin American countries without a vibrant parade. Don’t miss the ‘Dianas’ – traditional bands with drums, bugles, and trumpets.
Learn about the flag’s symbolism
The red, white, and blue colors depict the political atmosphere when the flag came to be. Flag Day in Panama is perfect for discovering these hidden meanings.
Plan a trip to Panama
Adventure and nature enthusiasts, bookmark Panama for your next getaway. The country’s biodiversity is three times more than Europe, Canada, and the U.S. combined! This is a good day as any to start planning that trip.
5 Facts About Panama That Will Blow Your Mind
Panama's earliest settlers
Native Chibchan, Chocoan, and Cueva populations inhabited Panama long before any European colonists did.
A Spanish colony
For nearly 300 years, Panama was a colony of the Spanish Empire after a Spanish explorer by the name of Vasco Nunez de Balboa "claimed" it for their king in 1513.
Where Coca-Cola first went international
In 1906, Panama became the first country where Coca-Cola was available outside the U.S.
Site of the first ocean-to-ocean flight
In 1913, Robert G. Fowler flew ocean-to-ocean across Panama in a Fowler-Gage biplane.
A rainforest within a city
Panama City is the world’s only capital city with a rainforest inside it.
Why We Love Flag Day in Panama
The country’s sovereignty
Flag Day in Panama symbolizes the sovereignty of a nation. Today is a celebration of Panamanian heritage and culture over centuries.
It highlights the importance of continual resistance
Panama’s history shows us that rulers and oppressive systems come and go. The only constant is collective action on things that matter.
Flag Day in Panama is part of a five-day national celebration. That’s five days of food, music, and dance. Sign us up immediately!
Flag Day in Panama dates