If you want to see ships transiting through the Panama Canal, you’ve come to the right place. This country’s beaches are perfect for soaking up the sun. But you can also surf and dive among coral reefs. You’ll also be able to explore the mangroves and rainforest on the other side of the canal. Here are some of the top things to do in Panama. If you haven’t been there yet, you should definitely visit soon.
1. See Ships Transiting through the Panama Canal
One of Panama’s most famous tourist attractions is its world-famous canal, the infamous, eight-hour-long span through which ships can travel from the Atlantic Ocean to the Pacific Ocean. Originally considered impossible to build, the canal has since become one of the world’s busiest travel destinations. Tourists can get a unique view of the canal from a cruise ship.
When viewing ships transiting the canal, it’s important to go early in the day. Many ships transit the canal in the morning or afternoon. Morning ships travel from the Pacific Ocean to the Atlantic Ocean, while afternoon ships go from north to south. There are tours offered in both Spanish and English. Tours of the canal are more informative than a tour of the locks, and they add a special element of adventure to your Panama vacation.
If you’re traveling with children, consider visiting the Embera Indians, which lives in the mountains just outside of Panama City. You’ll get to see their daily life, which is similar to how it was when Columbus first arrived here in 1500. A recent article about these fascinating tribes in National Geographic magazine highlights the fascinating culture they live in. They teach visitors about their way of life and provide examples of handicrafts, native food, and ceremonial dances.
2. Surf Dive & Soak up the Beaches of Bocas Del Toro
The first thing that visitors should do on their first day in Bocas del Toro is to get into the water. There are two distinct surf seasons in Bocas. The primary surf season starts in December and runs until April. December and January are the busiest months for tourists. February and March offer consistent swell with more sun. While April is transitional, there are a few nice waves available here.
Another highlight of the island is the Isla Bastimentos National Marine Park. The park is home to a rich variety of fish and sea life and is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. There are nine main islands and hundreds of tiny islets. You can surf all day long or spend the entire vacation relaxing on the beach.
The Caribbean Sea is a spectacular place to snorkel, and there are several excellent diving and snorkeling spots around the island. You can see southern rays, spotted eagle rays, and even nudibranchs. Several beginner dive sites are available, and there are also several restaurants. A must-visit restaurant is Cafe Del Mar.
3. Watch the Sun Go Down on the Sunset Coast
When visiting Panama City Beach, make sure you take a trip to the SkyWheel, a climate-controlled observation wheel rising 200 feet above the Gulf of Mexico. Once at the top, you can enjoy the stunning sunsets and 360-degree panoramic views of Panama City Beach. This is a great way to see the entire city. You can also enjoy mini-golf and ropes courses at the SkyWheel.
Another must-do while in Panama is a dolphin swim tour. This adventure allows visitors to swim with wild dolphins. This is a once-in-a-lifetime experience! Then, make sure to take in the spectacular sunsets while you’re at it. Watching the sun go down is the number one reason to visit this coastal region. It is also one of the country’s top destinations for surfers.
Whether you’re looking for a relaxing setting, or an action-packed experience, Panama City Beach has something for everyone. A visit to Panama City Beach is an excellent way to get in the mood for the night ahead. While on your vacation, make sure to check out the numerous live music venues and beach bars that are available for you to enjoy. Don’t forget to purchase an ice-cold drink to sip on while watching the sun go down on the Sunset Coast!
4. Hiking & Nature in Boquete
The first thing most visitors to Boquete do is hike the Lost Waterfalls Trail. This short hike is relatively easy, and the trail itself contains three stunning waterfalls. It is a popular spot for tourists, who can take in the sights and sounds of the area while also enjoying the cool, dry climate. Cash is king in this town, so make sure to bring plenty of cash with you.
The town is located near the border with Costa Rica and is close to the border of that country. While Boquete is a relatively safe location, it is important to remember to stay on paths and not stray off them. This is especially true if you are hiking alone in the area. You may not be aware of the dangers that can arise from flash floods. If you are unsure of the trails in Boquete, hire a guide.
While hiking in Boquete, be sure to visit the Lost Waterfalls trail. This trail winds through dense jungle to three waterfalls. It’s also possible to see a snake, caterpillars, and beautiful plants. During your hike, you may even spot a Quetzal bird. This is Panama’s number one attraction for tourists, so don’t miss this chance to experience this magnificent bird in its natural habitat.
5. Wander the Narrow Streets of Casco Viejo in Panama
A short walk from the airport, Casco Viejo is a popular stopover location for tourists. The neighborhood is filled with historic buildings, colonial architecture, and hip cafes. Some locals have balconies. You can even tour the Palace of the Herons, the residence of the president of Panama. Despite its small size, Casco Viejo has plenty to offer tourists and locals alike.
This colorful, historic neighborhood is home to many of Panama City’s most popular attractions. Visitors can walk along the narrow streets of Casco Viejo, the city’s historic center. UNESCO has designated the area as a World Heritage Site. Whether you prefer to take a photo of the city skyline or wander the narrow streets of Casco Viejo, you’ll find something of interest in this neighborhood.
The Old Town is an exciting place to visit on a vacation. There are several restaurants, museums, and boutiques to explore. If you’re feeling hungry, head up to a local coffee shop, like UNIDO. You can also try some delicious local fare like geisha coffee at a cafe near the American Trade Hotel. If you’re visiting the city during the night, you can stay up all night and enjoy the lights of Panama City.
6. Escape to the San Blas Islands
While not as well-known as other tourist destinations, the San Blas Islands is just as beautiful and offers a unique indigenous culture. Unlike other tourist destinations, tourism in the islands is handled by locals. This means that you can enjoy the laid-back island lifestyle while observing the untouched natural landscape. Despite their remoteness, the islands offer a picturesque setting, including turquoise waters, white-sand beaches, and swaying palm trees.
Among the things to pack for your trip to the San Blas Islands are sleeping clothes, sunscreen, and a toothbrush. Electricity and cell reception are limited, so plan to be disconnected for a while. You should also bring small bills with you, as the local Guna people don’t accept larger bills. You’ll also need your passport. In addition, you’ll need to have a valid passport when visiting the islands.
Whether you’re looking for a relaxing vacation or an active vacation, the San Blas Islands is the perfect destination. The weather in the San Blas Islands is tropical all year round. You can experience a stunning sunset on the pristine white-sand beaches and swim in the clear blue waters. You’ll also find some local islands, like Santa Elena, that are crowded with tourists.
7. Surf at Santa Catalina & Day Trip to Parque Nacion
One of the top things to do in Panama is to surf. You’ll find some of the best waves in Central America here, so you’ll want to take a trip there to catch a few waves. This small fishing village offers a laid-back surf town vibe, with funky bars and restaurants. If you’re not a surfer, there’s a place for you as well – a horseback tour.
You’ll need a rental car to get to the beach and then drive a bit further to the Sunset Coast, where there are very few tourists. The roads down to the coast are twisty and full of potholes, taking you even further off the beaten path. There are wide, private beaches, which take the brunt of the rolling waves of the Pacific Ocean. The beaches on this side of the country are great for snorkeling, with colorful marine life and a sunken ship that’s a popular sight for visitors.
The canal is one of Panama’s most famous attractions, and visitors are encouraged to take a full or partial canal-crossing, which takes between four and eight hours. There are many interesting places to visit in the city, and you can eat at a restaurant overlooking the canal while admiring the view. If you’re visiting Panama for the first time, you’ll probably want to make a day trip out of it.
8. Swim in the River at Los Cangilones
Located 30 minutes outside of Boquete, Panama’s Number 1 tourist attraction is a unique swimming experience: a swim in a natural rock formation. The river narrows into a pot-shaped gorge and opens up to a shallow pool for swimming. Visitors can even take part in a variety of water sports, such as kayaking, canoeing, or zip lining.
Whether you’re interested in scuba diving or swimming, Panama has a variety of activities for you to enjoy. Embera villages are home to some of the country’s major indigenous groups. Visitors can take a dugout canoe up the Chagres River to visit these villages and participate in cultural activities and handcrafted souvenirs. Embera culture is also one of Panama’s top attractions.
Despite its rocky terrain and tropical climate, Panama’s coastline is lush with rainforest, waterfalls, and rivers. The country’s climate is moderately warm and pleasant all year round. Tourists who come to Panama should expect the country’s beaches to be incredibly warm, and enjoy the tropical climate year-round. Swimmers are also likely to encounter some gangs and drug traffickers.