Whether you need a little bit of peace and quiet or a lot, a Panama island vacation can offer you everything you want out of a vacation — adventure, sunshine, excitement, tranquility, and fun! Panama has hundreds of islands, and they each offer a unique experience — from the colour of the sand to activities you can enjoy. On the Caribbean coast, you'll find the Bocas del Toro and Guna Yala archipelagos. Along the Pacific side, there are the Pearl Islands and islands within the Gulf of Chiriquí.
Bocas del Toro Province
Go to Isla Colón for some of the most interesting islands in the archipelago, which are nearby incredible wildlife spotting opportunities. This is where you’ll find Bocas Town and some of the most exciting nightlife in the archipelago. There are also lots of resorts and hotels to choose from right on the beach.
There are excellent places to surf on Isla Colón, like the reef break called the Paunch and the Playa Bluff beach. Playa Bluff is also an important site for sea turtles. For more surfing, you might want to take a quick trip to Isla Carenero for more impressive waves. If you want to swim, check out the Laguna Piscina or the white-sand beach of Bocas del Drago.
Gulf of Panama and Canal Zone
Isla Contadora is named for the contadoras — the “counting houses” where Spanish merchants would count pearls before they continued on to Spain. Today, it offers an abundance of opulent vacation getaways right on the beach. These islands aren’t overly developed, and the beaches offer white sand, clear water, and the chance to truly get away from it all.
Most travelers get around the island on golf carts or bikes, and there isn’t a lot of nightlife — both factors that make this island for guests who want to bum around the beach and explore the scenery. You will have an abundance of beaches to choose from, as well as coral reefs and gorgeous snorkeling attractions. You can find reefs off of the coast of beaches like Playa Galeón and Playa Larga. For more diving options, consider following a guide to some of the uninhabited nearby islands.