- The Online Guide to Travel Discover Paradise - Unveiling the Wonders of Panama

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San Blas Islands, Panama
San Blas Islands, Panama by Angel Silva on Unsplash.

Travel Notes: Latin America - Panama Travel Notes.

Panama Travel Notes

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Panama Travel and Tourism on Travel Notes


Visit Panama to enjoy a vibrant culture while visiting the country's pristine beaches and lush rainforests.on an unforgettable tropical escape in paradise.

About Panama

Panama offers many attractions for tourists including rainforests, national parks, pristine beaches, and a chance to visit the Panama Canal.

When planning a trip to Panama, it's important to consider the diverse range of attractions, entry requirements, and safety considerations to ensure a memorable and safe travel experience.

Countries neighbouring Panama: Colombia and Costa Rica.

Travel Map Mapping Panama

Map of Panama

Map of Panama

The capital of the Republic of Panama, Panama City, lies in the central part of the country; deep in the Gulf of Panama's womb.

Panama Overview

Located in the southern part of Central America, Panama is situated on the narrow isthmus that connects North and South America.

Panama is bordered by Costa Rica to the west, Colombia to the south-east, the Caribbean Sea to the north, and the Pacific Ocean to the south.

Capital of Panama

The capital and largest city of Panama is Panama City.


Panama has a diverse cultural heritage influenced by its indigenous peoples, Spanish colonial history, and Afro-Caribbean traditions.

Traditional music and dance, such as the tamborito and cumbia, are integral to Panama's cultural identity.


The official currency of Panama is the Panamanian balboa, but the U.S. dollar is widely used and accepted.


Panama has a well-developed service-based economy, with a significant focus on banking, commerce, and tourism.

The Panama Canal, one of the world's most important waterways, is a major contributor to the country's economy.


Panama's natural features includes mountains, rainforests, and coastal areas.

The country is known for its rich biodiversity, and it is home to a wide variety of plant and animal species.


Panama has a complex history that includes indigenous cultures, Spanish colonisation, and its role as a transit zone for goods and people between the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans.

The country gained independence from Colombia in 1903, with the support of the United States.


The official language of Panama is Spanish.

Panama Canal

The Panama Canal, connecting the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans, is a key feature of Panama and plays a crucial role in international trade.

It was officially opened in 1914 and has been a vital conduit for maritime traffic ever since.

In 1999, control of the canal was transferred from the United States to Panama.


Panama attracts tourists interested in its natural beauty, historic sites, and vibrant cities.

Apart from the Panama Canal, popular destinations include the Bocas del Toro archipelago, the San Blas Islands, and the historic district of Casco Viejo in Panama City.

Visiting Panama

If you're considering visiting Panama, you'll find a diverse range of attractions and activities to enjoy.

Panama Highlights

Bocas del Toro

This archipelago on the Caribbean side of Panama is known for its stunning beaches, clear waters, and vibrant coral reefs.

Bocas del Toro is a haven for water sports enthusiasts, offering opportunities for snorkeling, diving, and surfing.


Nestled in the highlands of Panama, Boquete is a charming town surrounded by lush greenery.

It's a popular destination for ecotourism and adventure activities such as hiking, birdwatching, and coffee plantation tours.

Casco Viejo

This historic district in Panama City is a UNESCO World Heritage site.

Casco Viejo features charming colonial architecture, cobblestone streets, and a vibrant cultural scene.

It's a great place to stroll around, visit art galleries, and enjoy local cuisine.

Guna Yala

Formerly known as the Kuna Yala, this autonomous indigenous region along the Caribbean coast is known for its beautiful landscapes and traditional Guna culture.

The Guna people manage their own territory and are known for their colourful clothing and molas (handmade textiles).

Panama Canal

A visit to Panama wouldn't be complete without experiencing the Panama Canal.

You can explore the Miraflores Locks Visitor Center, which provides a fascinating insight into the canal's history and operations.

There's also the option to take a boat tour through the canal to see the locks in action.

Panama City

Explore the modern side of Panama City with its impressive skyline and contemporary architecture.

The city offers a vibrant nightlife, shopping districts, and a variety of restaurants serving both local and international cuisine.

Panama Viejo

Explore the ruins of the original Panama City, which was sacked by the pirate Henry Morgan in the 17th century.

The archaeological site offers a glimpse into the country's early history.

San Blas Islands

Located on the Caribbean coast, the San Blas Islands are an idyllic destination with pristine beaches and crystal-clear waters.

The islands are home to the indigenous Guna people, and visitors can experience their unique culture and traditions.

Volcan Baru National Park

Adventure seekers can embark on a hike to the summit of Volcan Baru, the highest point in Panama.

On a clear day, you can witness breathtaking views of both the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea from the top.

Panama City

Founded by the Spanish in 1519, the original settlement had to be moved after it was destroyed, by the pirate Sir Henry Morgan, in 1671.

Map of Panama City

Map of Panama City

With the building of the Trans-Panama Railroad, in the 1850s, and the Panama Canal, in the early 1900s, the growth of Panama City was assured.

The city's cathedral was built between 1673 and 1760, and there are a number of museums detailing the history of Panama and religious colonial art.

Where to Stay in Panama City

The Executive Hotel:
The Executive Hotel has developed a reputation for quality service, marked by friendliness and personal attention.

Located in the heart of Panama's financial district, within easy walking distance of Panama's best restaurants, shopping, and nightlife.

Hotels in Panama City.


Located on Manzanillo Island, Colon is the northern terminus of the Panama Railway and Panama Canal.

Tourists come here mainly to watch the giant ships carve their way through the south American continent.

Accommodation in Colon

Gamboa Rainforest Resort:
The Gamboa Rainforest Resort is located within the Soberania National Park, and lies along the banks of the Chagres River and Gatun Lake; the main water sources for the Panama Canal and part of Panama's most precious assets.

Melia Panama Canal:
Overlooking Gatun Lake, the property's amenities include an outdoor pool, swim-up bar, whirlpool, fitness room, Miraflores Restaurant and Darien Restaurant; an a la carte steakhouse.

The Panama Canal

The Panama Canal runs from Cristobal (the twin town of Colon) to Balboa; on the Gulf of Panama.

The Panama Canal is around 40 miles long, and ships have to pass through numerous locks.

As far back as Hernan Cortes, in the 16th century, the Spanish were thinking of cutting a canal through the isthmus to speed up the time taken to haul their gold from Peru, on the Pacific side, to Spain, on the other side of the Atlantic.

Holy Roman Emperor Charles V ordered a survey of the area in 1523. Several canal plans were suggested, but none of them were initiated.

The manana mentality seemed to affect the Spanish way back then, and other historical events soon took the matter out of their hands.

US interest was sparked when gold was discovered in California, in 1848.

The builder of the Suez Canal, Ferdinand Marie de Lesseps, was called in, but his company went bankrupt in 1889.

The US Congress again looked at the possibilities of a canal route through Central America, but met the stumbling block of the Colombian senate.

The United States were finally able to push ahead with the building of the Panama Canal when Panama revolted from Colombia, in 1903.

The United States guaranteed the independence of Panama and secured a perpetual lease on a 16-km strip for the canal.

Control of the Panama Canal reverted back to Panama at noon on December 31st, 1999.

Panama Canal

The Panama Canal Authority is the autonomous agency of the Government of Panama in charge of managing, operating, and maintaining the Panama Canal. The live camera is refreshed every 10 seconds.

Panama Canal Tours

View the Panama Canal on a helicopter tour, departing from Panama City.

Bocas del Toro

The ferry Palanga leaves Almirante, for Bocas del Toro, at 9am on Wednesdays, Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays. The return from Isla Colon is at 5pm.

If you prefer to travel by air, Aeroperlas and Mapiex Aero fly to Bocas del Toro City from Panama City, David and Changuinola.

Bocas Yacht Club and Marina

Bocas del Toro, with its crystal clear turquoise waters, coral reefs and white sand beaches, is a paradise for any cruising yachtsman.

Isla Carenero

Isla Carenero is the smallest of the nine islands that incorporate the Archipelago of Bocas Del Toro.

Hotel Tierra Verde:
This new Caribbean-style house is located on the tropical island of Carenero, just 5 minutes via water taxi from the main island of Isla Colon in the Bocas del Toro Archipelago.

Explore Panama

Darien Jungle

Where rivers are roads and the forests are often impenetrable in this most isolated and least developed province in Panama.

The Darien offers some of the greatest ecological riches in the world, throughout its dense tropical jungles and network of streams and rivers, and contains Panama's most spectacular reserve.

Darien National Park

The rainforest in the Darien National Park is so thick that it is the only place where the Pan-American highway running Alaska to Patagonia, does not penetrate.

This truly wild and nature-dense region is heaven for adventurers, birders and nature lovers.

El Valle de Anton

A magical place for a weekend away from Panama's lowland heat, El Valle de Anton is a fertile volcanic valley filled with bright flowers, square trees and golden frogs; just an hour and a half's drive from Panama City.

Isla Contadora

Small tropical island, 60km from Panama, with gorgeous beaches and many small islands nearby.

Panama Beaches

If you love beach vacations, but hate crowds, Panama is the place for you.

Along the Pacific Coast just outside Panama City, begin a string of pretty beaches of white sand and sapphire blue waters.

It's hard to think of any other metropolitan city with so many fine beaches nearby.

Panama's Museums

With Its 10,000 years' history and 450 years of abundant Indian and immigrant culture from four continents, Panama offers a variety of museums highlighting all the aspects of it's colourful historic past.

San Blas Islands

A string of 378 coral-fringed islands, of which only 49 are inhabited by the fiercely independent Kuna Indians.

Although only a 20-minute plane ride away from Panama City, a trip to the San Blas islands will transport you centuries into the past.

Visit Panama

The heart of Panama City’s historical district, Casco Viejo is a delightful mix of old and new influences.

Visit Panama City for the history and colonial architecture. Stay for the night-clubs and restaurants.

Business in Panama

American Chamber of Commerce in Panama

The American Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Panama was created on October 31, 1979, by a handful of business people who felt that the organisation could be an important voice in promoting business ideas in Panama.

Panama Tours

Adventuras Panama

Adventures Panama offer river rafting tours on the Chagres, Mamoni and Chiriqui as well as sea kayaking at San Blas, rainforest tribes visits and more to help create unforgettable travel memories in Panama.

Ancon Expeditions

Affiliated to Panama's National Association for the Conservation of Nature, Ancon Expeditions offers nature-oriented tours with naturalist guides and accommodation in Eco-lodges.

Panama Travel Guides

The Rough Guide to Panama (Rough Guides) Lonely Planet Panama (Travel Guide)

Panama Travel Guides - Panama Maps.

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Local weather forecasts for destinations around Latin  America.

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