There’s plenty more to Panama than the canal! Find out the best places to visit including Bocas Del Toro, Boquete and the stunning San Blas Islands.
How much do you know about the Central American country of Panama? Before I went, I knew there was a famous canal and they had their own type of hat. However, what I found was a country with breathtakingly diverse landscape, friendly people, buzzing cities and relaxed desert islands. The climate was tropical with high temperatures all year round on the coast, and some welcome cooler temperatures in the mountains.
With two weeks, you can cover a lot of ground. A few months ago I fell in love with Guatemala, and didn’t expect another country to come close, but Panama really won me over. If you’re not convinced yet, perhaps this will help…
Bocas Del Toro
Bocas Del Toro is an archipelago of nine main islands and over 50 smaller islets in the Caribbean. They are beautiful and it’s very easy to settle into the relaxed pace of ‘island life’. On the main island Colon you’ll find several hotels, restaurants, bars and shops, but venture away from here and you’ll have a more authentic Panamanian experience.
I stayed on Isla Bastimentos (the second largest island) at the family-run Hotel Caribbean View. It was all hands on deck – parents in the kitchen cooking, the son driving the water taxi, small kids running around helping rent out kayaks. It was a really local experience! Other great places to stay in Bocas del Toro include overwater bungalows on Isla Colon where you can snorkel right from your own deck.