La Palma

La Palma is the provincial capital of the Darién Province. It’s a small town, with fewer than 4,000 residents. Most travelers only stop here while en route to other destinations in the Darién.

La Palma


The town itself is unimpressive and has only a single street running through town. The street is lined with small stores, hotels, restaurants, and bars. There are government offices, including a police headquarters and a branch of ANAM (Panama’s environmental agency), as well as a bank and hospital. The townspeople don’t see many foreigners, so visitors should be prepared for stares. That said, La Palma is still a good (and in some cases, necessary) place to stock up on provisions before heading deeper into the Darién.

La Palma’s location is actually quite impressive. The town is set at the mouth of the Tuira River, which flows into the Gulf of San Miguel. This is close to the place where Balboa became the first European to set sight on the Pacific Ocean. Not far from town is El Fuerte de San Carlos de Boca Chica, a Spanish fort that was built in the 18th century to protect the gold mines at Cana from pirates. These days the fort is crumbling and taken over by creeper vines, but is still an interesting place to visit and take pictures. It’s a short boat ride from La Palma.

La Palma is a jumping off point for visits to the Punta Patiño Nature Reserve and Emberá villages along the Río Sambu. La Palma has a small airstrip, but it does not currently receive flights.

Frequently asked Questions

Is Your Planning Service Free?

Yes! The rates are the same if you book directly with the hotels and tours. We offer the additional value of an expert planner to ensure your trip is perfect.

How Does Your Service Work?

We listen to your vision for your trip and ensure that your experience exceeds all of your expectations. Think of us as the “Zappos of Travel.” We do more than book your reservations — we take a holistic approach and create seamless plans.

Can I Trust You?

We have planned thousands of vacations for people just like you. Our mission to redefine and simplify travel planning began in 2006 in Costa Rica, and it continues to this very moment. With over a decade of travel planning experience, we are confident that we can craft your perfect vacation for free.

La PalmaLa Palma