When to Visit Panama


Panama has a rainy and dry season. The dry season lasts from mid-December to mid-April, and the rainy season lasts from mid-April to mid-December. The dry season is the equivalent of summer in Panama, and as such is the high season for tourism. This is the best time to lounge on beaches or go hiking in the mountains. Hotel prices and airfares, however, are generally higher than the rest of the year.

During the rainy season, storms tend to come and go relatively quickly. Most days start with sun, see rain during the afternoon, and clear up at night. The earlier months of the rainy season tend to be less wet than the later months, when storms can last longer and make it difficult to go on hikes or drive along country roads.

Some parts of the country see scatterings of rain throughout the year. These include the western highlands, the islands of Bocas del Toro, and much of the Caribbean coast. The best time to visit Bocas is in February-March and September-October. The islands of Guna Yala, which are spread along the eastern Caribbean coast, are considered best in late February-March.

One other thing to bear in mind is Carnival, Panama’s largest holiday. This annual festival takes place on the four days leading up to Ash Wednesday and is biggest on the Azuero Peninsula and in Panama City. Aside from Carnival, there are a number of national holidays and festivals throughout November.