Panama

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Our most recommended things to do in Panama

Panama: All-Inclusive Taboga Island Catamaran Cruise

1. Panama: All-Inclusive Taboga Island Catamaran Cruise

Meet at the Balboa Yacht Club to begin your all-inclusive day tour on a catamaran. Take a 45-minute cruise to the Island of Taboga and enjoy breathtaking views of the Panama City skyline, Cinta Costera, and ships waiting to cross the Panama Canal while having light snacks. After reaching Taboga, sail to the backside of the island to a secret spot where an amazing bay with beautiful natural views is waiting for you. Have the opportunity to jump off the boat and have your first swim. There is also stair access from the boat to the water in case you don't feel like diving right in. After some water fun, climb back into the boat to enjoy a cold beer and lie in the boat's nets or dance with the crew while you sail towards the town side of the island. Dock so you can head to the beach and visit the small village of Taboga. Spend time on the beach relaxing or getting a game of volleyball in. After your beach and town visit, hop back aboard for a delicious lunch that includes chicken with white sauce, rice with vegetables, vegetable salad, potato salad, and pasta. If the wind conditions are right, open the sails and continue the party as you cruise along the open water.

Panama City: 5-Hour Tour and Panama Canal

2. Panama City: 5-Hour Tour and Panama Canal

Enjoy 2 hours at the fascinating Panama Canal before exploring Panama City's history and sights. Discover 4 levels of exhibitions about the Canal at the Miraflores Visitor Center. See ships going through this iconic marvel of engineering. Take a panoramic drive along the Ancon foothills where you can take in the lush greenery and learn about the area's importance during the world wars. Stop at the Amador Causeway for a chance to get some incredible photos of the city, try one of its best ceviche places, have some amazing homemade ice cream, or do some shopping. Walk through the streets of the Old Town and visit the Cathedral Basilica Santa Maria la Antigua. Take a guided walk, ending in the Plaza de Francia on the old walls that protected the city from invasion over the years.

Panama City: Ocean to Ocean Panama Canal and Jungle Tour

3. Panama City: Ocean to Ocean Panama Canal and Jungle Tour

Begin your tour with hotel pickup at 7:00 AM. Travel west of Panama City to start your exploration of the Panama Canal. Embark on a 90-minute boat tour on the Canal and Gatun Lake. Ride along the canal and get an up-close view of the ships passing through as well as the abundant wildlife along the shores. Visit the famous Monkey Islands, where you can see capuchins, howlers, and tamarins. Then, head 45 minutes north to the Caribbean side of Panama to visit the Agua Clara Visitor Center to see the new expansion locks operating up-close. Observe transiting vessels passing through the Agua Clara Locks on the way to the Pacific or the Atlantic Ocean from a scenic lookout point. Learn first-hand about the various operations of the Panama Canal, the history of its construction, its participation in world markets, and the importance of its watershed. Make your way to a scenic and quiet spot beneath the Gatun Dam and have a picnic lunch at the fork of the French West Diversion Channel and the Chagres River. Next, travel to San Lorenzo National Park, where you can visit a remote rainforest full of flora and fauna, followed by a tour of Fort San Lorenzo. Discover a 400-year-old Spanish fort on a scenic cliff overlooking the Caribbean. Hear about the many attacks by pirates and privateers at one of the most historically important places in Panama. Finally, be returned to your hotel in Panama City.

Panama: 6-Hour Panama Canal Southbound Cruise & Lunch

4. Panama: 6-Hour Panama Canal Southbound Cruise & Lunch

Travel southbound through the Panama Canal during this 6-hour tour from Panama City. With your local guide, board a bus for a 45-minute journey to Gamboa, home of the Panama Canal Dredging Division. Meet your vessel, the Pacific Queen, for a trip through the Gailard cut, the Pedro Miguel Locks, and the Miraflores Locks. Admire scenic views of the Centennial Bridge, the Chagres River, and the Bridge of the Americas. Eat a complimentary lunch on board during your journey. Disembark at the Flamenco Marina in Panama City. - Journey southbound through the Panama Canal - Travel on a small vessel to see the workings of the locks up close - Navigate through the Pedro Miguel and Miraflores locks - Box Lunch is provided onboard the boat.

Panama City: Money Heist and San Blas Islands Day Trip

5. Panama City: Money Heist and San Blas Islands Day Trip

Be collected from your accommodation in Panama City between 5:20 AM and 6:00 AM to start the day trip. Drive 2.5 hours to San Blas Port, Carti, and then take a local Panga boat to the first of the San Blas islands. Here, enjoy a light breakfast of fresh fruit and take some time to sunbathe with provided umbrellas, beach chairs, and towels. You can also use kayaks or paddleboards to explore the island surroundings. Afterward, enjoy a lunch of fresh fish, rice, and salad. After lunch, sail onwards to Perro Chico, known as the best snorkeling spot in the San Blas Islands. Here, you can see a variety of colorful fish species and a sunken boat. Next, visit Island Pelicano, made famous by the Netflix series Money Heist. Finally, head to the natural swimming pool. This is a bank of sand in the middle of the ocean where you can walk or swim around to find your starfish. At 3:30 PM, sail back towards the port and return to Panama City in the evening. On weekends, before coming back to the port, you'll visit one of the largest communities in San Blas to witness a traditional dance put on by locals.

From Panama City or Portobelo: Caribbean Cruise with Lunch

6. From Panama City or Portobelo: Caribbean Cruise with Lunch

Explore the beauty of the Blues Veins lagoon and the white sands of Playa Blanca beach on this tour from Panama City or Portobelo. Sit down for a delicious lunch on a catamaran.  Choose to be picked up from the comfort of your accommodations in Panama City or to make your own way to Portobelo. Hop aboard a speedboat that will connect you to the catamaran. Feel the wind in your hair as you soak up some sun on the way to your first stop at Blues Veins. Make your way to the interior lagoon aboard a dinghy. Disembark at a secluded beach where you can take a walk or snorkel through the coral in the crystal-clear waters.  Head back to the boat to eat a lunch of local products with a variety of dietary options. Continue to Playa Blanca beach where you can make the most of the sea by swimming, kayaking, and paddle boarding.  Return to you Portobelo where, depending on the option you select, you can be dropped-off at your accommodation in Panama City, or you can drive back to your accommodation. 

Panama City: Small-Group Miraflores Locks and City Tour

7. Panama City: Small-Group Miraflores Locks and City Tour

Starting the day early will give you the chance to learn even more about the Panama Canal. Skip the traffic and arrive at the Miraflores Locks visitor center when it opens, so you can watch the action in peace. After the canal, head to Casco Viejo, the second city of Panama built in 1673. Walk around and enjoy the architecture and hear about its historical relevance.  Drive over the Bridge of the Americas for amazing views. Stop at the viewpoint to hear more about Panama City and its future. The Amador Causeway, Panama City's bustling boardwalk, is one of the most refreshing places in the city. End the tour with some recommendations for lunch and further exploration from your guide, leaving you with the tools to get the most out of your visit to this beautiful and modern city.

From Panama City: Panama Canal and Monkey Island Tour

8. From Panama City: Panama Canal and Monkey Island Tour

Benefit from pick-up at your hotel or other location in Panama City, and journey to the Panama Canal Visitors Center to get a detailed explanation about how the canal and famous Miraflores Locks work. Visit the museum to learn more about this important water passage between the Atlantic and Pacific oceans. Return to the vehicle and pass Miraflores Lake and the Pedro Miguel Locks as you make your way to the town of Gamboa. Upon arrival at the Chagres River, climb aboard for a scenic boat trip across artificial Gatun Lake. Marvel at the surrounding landscape of the biggest and most important lake in the Panama Canal. Watch the large ships passing through the canal to get a sense of the magnitude of this masterpiece of engineering. Arrive at a group of islands to see different species of animals and monkeys. Return to Panama City and get dropped off at your hotel.

From Panama City: Monkey Islands Tour on Gatun Lake

9. From Panama City: Monkey Islands Tour on Gatun Lake

Travel to the Gamboa Marina in an air-conditioned tour vehicle with a guide and the rest of the tour group, before a transfer to a riverboat for a ride on the Chagres River, one of Panama's largest rivers, and head for Monkey Island. Observe the different species of monkeys that live on the island, from white-face monkeys, howler monkeys, and Geoffrey´s tamarinds, while taking some time to snap photos, and learn interesting facts and information about the different species from a knowledgeable guide. Return to the marina and to Panama City, and end the tour with drop-off at the hotel.

From Panama City: Catamaran Cruise to Taboga Island

10. From Panama City: Catamaran Cruise to Taboga Island

Board a catamaran from Panama City, and set sail toward Taboga Island. Capture sights of the Bridge of the Americas, the Amador Causeway, and the Bay of Panama. Enjoy an open bar and musical atmosphere, as you swim and sunbathe on the beach. After lunch, explore the local village. Arrive at the meeting point and jump onto a maxi catamaran heading toward Taboga Island, located just 20 kilometers off the coast of Panama City. Admire the stunning Pacific Ocean and see along the way the Bridge of the Americas, the Amador Causeway, and the Bay of Panama. Drop anchor in a virgin bay, and take advantage of the sea and sun until lunchtime. Relax in the sun, listen to music and enjoy an open-bar onboard. Then, sail toward the main beach and the town of Taboga to enjoy lunch on the catamaran. Afterward, opt to go down to the island to visit the town and take advantage of the beach or continue with the vibe on the catamaran before riding back to Panama City.

With its endless islands, pristine beaches, and wealth of historical sites, Panama is truly one of the best travel destinations in all of Central America. Less crowded then other popular sites such as Costa Rica, Panama offers visitors a chance to explore, relax, and enjoy some truly spectacular scenery.

When visiting Panama, guided tours can help you make sure you make the most of your time there. Visits to Panama City will allow you to explore the history of the area, while a visit to the Panama Canal will provide you with the chance to marvel at one of world's most amazing feats of engineering.

When visiting countries in Central or South America, there is always an abundance of natural beauty to explore. Panama features more than ten natural parks, as well as a wealth of hiking trails, hidden inlets, and even a volcano to explore.

If relaxing on a beach is your idea of a fun vacation, Panama has more than its share of beautiful beaches both on the mainland as well as on offshore islands. Experienced guides can help you locate the beach that is right for you, whether you are looking for a secluded romantic spot, or a hidden cove surrounded by rugged coastline.

Other Sightseeing Options in Panama

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