Afro-Panamanians have played a significant role in the creation of the Republic of Panama. Some historians have estimated that up to 50 percent of the population of Panama has some African ancestry. The descendants of the Africans who arrived during the colonial era are intermixed with the mainstream population, or are found in small Afro-Panamanian communities along the Atlantic Coast and in villages in the Darién jungles.
Other Afro-Panamanians are the descendants of later migrants from the Caribbean who came to work on railroad construction projects, commercial agricultural enterprises, and especially the canal. Important Afro-Caribbean community areas include towns and cities such as Colon, Cristobal and Balboa, in the former Canal Zone, as well as the Rio Abajo area of Panama City. Another region with a large Afro-Caribbean population, is the Province of Bocas del Toro on the Caribbean coast bordering Costa Rica.
These ethnic groups brought with them the rich culture with deep roots in the African continent. One of the distinct characteristic is the beauty of their architecture. Below are several examples of houses which depict their taste for large houses with ample corridors and high ceilings. Many foreign visitors would love to own a house like these with wrap around porches to catch the cool summer breeze blowing inland from the ocean.