Panama travel guide

Panama Tourism | Panama Guide

You're Going to Love Panama

With its beautiful beaches, Panama is the perfect destination for visitors that are interested in snorkeling, scuba diving, surfing, and just lounging by the ocean.

Whether you would like to explore the region's modern art scene or go ziplining throughout the rainforest, you are sure to have the time of your life on your trip.

What to do in Panama

1. Enjoy the Ocean

To enjoy some snorkeling, sailing, and swimming, head to the San Blas Islands, which can be found just off the coast of Panama.

2. Visit a Museum

If you would like to learn more about the country's rich history and see one of its most famous monuments, pay a visit to the Panamá Viejo, as it dates back to the 1600s and now contains a small museum for visitors.

3. Go on a Hike

Volcán Barú is known for being the tallest mountain in Panama and for providing guests with a selection of challenging and scenic hiking trails.

4. See Some Wildlife

For those that would like to see some of the country's wildlife, you may be interested in going to Starfish Beach, an area that is known for having particularly calm waters, as well as a variety of fish.

5. Learn About Ecosystems

To visit a museum during your trip and learn more about the region's ecosystems, you won't want to miss the Biomuseo, as it was designed by the famous architect Frank Gehry and contains a series of exhibits related to Panama's biodiversity.

When to visit Panama

Panama in June
Estimated hotel price
1 night at 3-star hotel
Panama in June
Estimated hotel price
1 night at 3-star hotel

When traveling to Panama, you will find that the best time to visit is between the months of December and March, as this is the country's dry period.

How to Get to Panama

Entry Requirements

Citizens of most countries do not need to have a special visa to travel to Panama and can simply enter the country for up to 180 days with a valid passport.


The most common way for visitors to arrive in Panama is by plane, with Tocumen International Airport being one of the most popular airports.


If you would like to arrive in Panama by car, it is possible to drive from Costa Rica. However, there are no roads that connect the country with Colombia.


For those that will be taking the bus from Costa Rica, there are three potential entry points for you to arrive in Panama, which are Paso Canoas, Panaline, and Ticabus.


Cruise ships will often bring their guests to Panama, and it is also possible to take a banana boat from Ecuador, Venezuela, and Colombia.

Popular airlines serving Panama

Good (504 reviews)
British Airways
Good (2,084 reviews)
Good (3,659 reviews)
Turkish Airlines
Good (1,719 reviews)
Air France
Good (624 reviews)
United Airlines
Good (3,587 reviews)
Good (1,164 reviews)
Qatar Airways
Good (1,684 reviews)
Excellent (1,449 reviews)
Air Canada
Good (2,576 reviews)
Korean Air
Excellent (447 reviews)
Air Europa
Good (218 reviews)
Good (1,033 reviews)
Asiana Airlines
Excellent (137 reviews)
Copa Airlines
Good (622 reviews)
Excellent (372 reviews)
American Airlines
Good (4,987 reviews)
Good (435 reviews)
Air Transat
Excellent (128 reviews)
Excellent (356 reviews)
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Where to stay in Panama

In large cities, such as Panama City, you will find a selection of chic high-rise hotels for you to choose from. In more remote areas, there are many small and charming hotels that are situated almost directly on the beach.

Where to stay in popular areas of Panama

Most booked hotels in Panama

Riu Plaza Panama
Excellent (8.8, 6834 reviews)
Plaza Paitilla Inn
Excellent (8.6, 7727 reviews)
Principe Hotel and Suites
Excellent (8.4, 3675 reviews)
Hotel Riu Playa Blanca
Excellent (8.3, 3279 reviews)
Global Hotel Panama
Excellent (8.3, 1600 reviews)
Summit Rainforest & Golf Resort
Excellent (8.3, 1534 reviews)

How to Get Around Panama

Public Transportation

For those that will be staying in Panama City, it is possible to take a local bus that will bring you to various points in the city for approximately 0.25 PAB (0.25 USD). In other cities, it is easiest to use the local bus, as they are cheap and run frequently.


Panama has buses that can bring visitors to many destinations that are located along the Pan American Highway, with most cities having several pick-up and drop-off times per day.


Visitors are able to rent a car from most international rental companies in Panama as long as they have a valid driver's license. As the country is shaped linearly and has the Pan American Highway, it is very easy to drive between different regions.


It is also possible to fly between major cities in Panama, with the average one-way ticket costing approximately 85 PAB (85 USD). If you plan on booking a plane, consider flying with Copa Airlines, as they provide many daily domestic flights.

The Cost of Living in Panama

When dining in a standard restaurant, you will find that an average meal will cost you between 3-10 PAB (3-10 USD). In grocery stores, 2 lb of apples will cost you around 3-3.50 PAB (3-3.50 USD), while 16 oz of the local cheese will cost you approximately 5.70-6 PAB (5.70-6 USD). Although most restaurants, hotels, and shops in large cities accept credit and debit cards, stores in smaller cities often only accept cash.

Popular cities in Panama