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Los Santos

Los Santos is a Panamanian province, located southeast of the Azuero peninsula. Las Tablas is its capital and most populated locality. It is composed of the districts of Los Santos, Guararé, Las Tablas, Macaracas, Pedasí, Pocrí and Tonosí. With an area of ​​3 809.4 km² and a population of 89,592 inhabitants, it borders on the south and east with the Pacific Ocean, on the north with the Pacific Ocean and the province of Herrera, and on the west with the province of Veraguas, specifically with the district of Mariato. The geographical framework is one of the elements that gives uniqueness and personality to Los Santos.

From the geographical point of view, we can distinguish three large environmental areas, formed by the interaction of different physical factors that affect the natural environment: the mountain area dominated by the Azuero sector of the mountains of Azuero and Canajagua-separating Los Santos de Mariato-, an intermediate area of ​​hills and fluvial valleys, the most important being the Tonosí, Rico valley and the La Villa river, which separate the highlands of Azuero from the third zone, constituted by the coastal plains and sedimentary basins. Los Santos is located in the Arco Seco, name given to the strip of land between the Gulf of Panama and the Central Cordillera that includes areas of the provinces of Coclé, Herrera and Veraguas in the south of the Isthmus of Panama. It has a tropical climate of savannah and moderate temperatures, strongly influenced by the Pacific Ocean winds that hit the mountains, and by the Humboldt Current. The average rainfall is 1,200 mm per year, which allows the growth of the tropical forest dry and wet. Its highest elevation is located in the peak of Cerro Hoya with 1 559 meters, other important peaks are the Cerro Cambutal and Cerro Los Ñopos.

In this region are the oldest human settlements of the Isthmus of Panama. It was part of the cultural region of the Gran Coclé where one of the first ceramic styles of America was developed. The first Europeans to explore Los Santos were the Castilians in 1515 under the command of Gonzalo de Badajoz. Upon the arrival of the Europeans, the region was ruled by the Antataura or Cutara cacique, and was known as the Land of Lord Paris or Parita of the ngäbe Bäri-ta, which means Confederation of Peoples, because it has six other indigenous provinces under its control: Guararí, Quemá, Chiracoitia, Hueré, Guanata and Usagaña. The only province that was not under his control was Escoriá. Gaspar de Espinosa managed to conquer Pariba and annex it to the Spanish empire in 1516.

The modern province of Los Santos was constituted in January 1945 replacing the extinct province of Azuero in accordance with decree No.13 cabinet, leaving its territorial regime regulated by the second chapter of Law 58 of July 29,1998, losing the territory of Quebro in said process. The culture of Santeña is the result of the passage of different peoples and civilizations that, over time, have shaped a particular cultural identity. These towns, some very different from each other, have been leaving an imprint slowly settled among the inhabitants. Currently, it has a Human Development Index of 0.782, the second place nationwide.