Celebrating Flag Day in Panama

Saurav Singh

Flag Day in Panama is celebrated on November 4 every year. This day commemorates the country’s second official liberation from external aggressors. It celebrates Panama’s official separation from the Republic of Colombia in 1903. The Panamanian flag was designed by Maria de la Ossa de Amador and was officially adopted on March 25th, 1925. The flag of Panama is a rectangular banner divided into four quarters. The stars and quarters are said to stand for the rival political parties, and the white is said to stand for the peace in which they operate. Blue was the color of the Conservatives and red was the color of the Liberals. November in Panama is a month of celebration. The country parties for five days straight, of which Flag Day falls on day two. This public holiday is part of Independence Day celebrations. On this day, all government offices and banks are closed, but many businesses prefer to remain open.


Geography: Panama is a country located in Central America at the southern end of the continent, bordering South America1. It is bordered by Costa Rica to the west, Colombia to the southeast, the Caribbean Sea to the north, and the Pacific Ocean to the south. Panama is a narrow land bridge, or isthmus, connecting North and South America.

Capital and Largest City: Panama City is the capital and largest city of Panama. It is home to nearly half the country’s over 4 million inhabitants.

Official Language: Spanish is the official language of Panama.

Government: Panama is a unitary presidential republic with Laurentino Cortizo as the President.

Economy: Revenue from canal tolls continues to represent a significant portion of Panama’s GDP, although commerce, banking, and tourism are major and growing sectors.

Tourist Attractions: Panama is renowned for its natural beauty, diverse plant and animal life, and vibrant music and culture3. The country is home to several attractions such as the Biomuseo, Panamá Viejo, and the Panama Canal4. You can snorkel in the crystal-clear waters of Bocas del Toro, hike in the cloud forests of Boquete, or admire the art and architecture of Panama City.

History: Before the arrival of Spanish colonists in the 16th century, Panama was inhabited by a number of different indigenous tribes1. It broke away from Spain in 1821 and joined the Republic of Gran Colombia, a union of Nueva Granada, Ecuador, and Venezuela1. After Gran Colombia dissolved in 1831, Panama and Nueva Granada eventually became the Republic of Colombia1. With the backing of the United States, Panama seceded from Colombia in 1903, allowing the construction of the Panama Canal to be completed by the United States Army Corps of Engineers between 1904 and 1914.

History of Flag Day in Panama

Flag Day in Panama, celebrated on November 4th, is a day imbued with patriotic fervor and a deep sense of national pride. It marks a pivotal moment in Panama’s history, commemorating the country’s separation from Colombia and the adoption of its national symbol of unity and identity: the Panamanian flag. The origins of Flag Day date back to the early 20th century, during a time of significant political and social upheaval. Panama, having been under Spanish rule for over 300 years, declared its independence on November 28, 1821. However, it soon became part of the Republic of Greater Colombia, which included several other Latin American nations. The desire for autonomy remained strong among Panamanians, and by the early 1900s, the strategic importance of the Isthmus of Panama for global maritime trade had become evident. The construction of the Panama Canal, a monumental engineering feat, was central to these aspirations. The United States, keen on controlling the canal’s construction and operation, supported Panama’s independence movement against Colombia.

On November 3, 1903, Panama declared its independence from Colombia, a decision driven by the aspiration to have autonomous control over the future canal. The following day, November 4th, became etched in history as Flag Day, celebrating the birth of a new nation and its symbol of sovereignty. The flag itself was designed by Maria de la Ossa de Amador, who, along with her sister-in-law and niece, created three copies of the flag that were flown upon Panama’s declaration of independence. The design reflects Panama’s political landscape, with the blue and red colors representing the two primary political parties, and the white symbolizing the peace within which they coexist. In celebrating Flag Day, Panamanians reaffirm their commitment to the values of liberty, democracy, and unity—principles that are as relevant today as they were over a century ago when the first Panamanian flag was hoisted, signaling the dawn of a new era for the isthmus nation.


Flag Day in Panama, celebrated on November 4th, is a day imbued with deep national pride and historical significance. It marks Panama’s official separation from Colombia in 1903, a pivotal moment that led to the country’s second and final independence. This day is part of a broader celebration that spans five days, reflecting the nation’s enduring spirit of freedom and self-determination. The Panamanian flag, designed by Maria de la Ossa de Amador and adopted in 1925, is a symbol of this hard-won independence. It represents the values and aspirations of the Panamanian people, featuring bold colors and a design that encapsulates the nation’s rich history and vibrant culture. Each element of the flag—from the blue rectangles symbolizing unity to the red center representing the bloodshed for freedom—tells a story of the past and a vision for the future.


Flag Day in Panama is a vibrant celebration held on November 4th, commemorating the country’s independence from Colombia in 1903. This day is part of a series of holidays known as the Fiestas Patrias, which are celebrated with great enthusiasm and national pride. Panamanians honor this day with parades, cultural performances, and the display of the national flag, which symbolizes the nation’s sovereignty and history. The flag itself was designed by María de la Ossa de Amador and officially adopted in 1925, becoming a powerful emblem of Panama’s identity and unity. Flag Day is an opportunity for Panamanians to reflect on their rich history and celebrate the achievements of their nation.

  • Watch the vibrant parades: Enjoy the colorful processions featuring traditional bands known as ‘Dianas’, complete with drums, bugles, and trumpets.
  • Learn about the flag’s symbolism: Discover the meaning behind the red, white, and blue colors of the Panamanian flag, which reflect the political climate at the time of its creation.
  • Decorate with pride: Show your patriotism by adorning your home or workplace with Panamanian flags and other national symbols.
  • Plan a trip: Consider visiting Panama to experience its rich culture and natural beauty, especially during the festive month of November.
  • Participate in flag hoisting ceremonies: Join the local community in one of the many flag-raising events held across the country.


Here are some interesting facts about FLAG DAY IN PANAMA:

  • Flag Day in Panama is celebrated on November 4th every year to honor the country’s flag and commemorate Panama’s separation from Colombia in 1903.
  • The Panamanian flag was designed by María de la Ossa de Amador and was officially adopted on March 25, 1925.
  • This day is part of a series of holidays in November known as the “Fiestas Patrias,” which are a significant time of national celebration.
  • The original flag design was created while plans for Panama’s independence were still a secret, and it was made on November 1, 1903.
  • An interesting fact is that over 8,000 ships worldwide fly the Panamanian flag due to the country’s favorable shipping laws, more than those registered in the USA and China combined.
  • Flag Day is one of the most colorful holidays in Panama, with national flags displayed throughout the country, celebrating Panamanian culture and heritage.


Year Date Day
2024 November 4 Monday
2025 November 4 Tuesday
2026 November 4 Wednesday
2027 November 4 Thursday
2028 November 4 Saturday