Overview

Introduction

Panama is renowned for its landmark canal. It also boasts wonderful national parks, unique indigenous communities, untouched islands, amazing volcanic craters, tropical rainforest, enchanting cloud forest and abundant wildlife, including over 900 bird species. Tourism is in its infancy, offering an authentic experience for more adventurous travellers. Also combines well with Costa Rica for an extended stay.

Panama is the southernmost country of Central America, bordering Costa Rica to the West and Colombia to the East.  Covering approximately 29,000 square miles, more than a quarter of the land is set aside for conservation, including 11 national parks. For this reason, it is hardly surprising that Panama is home to the greatest number of plant and animal species in the world, including over nine hundred bird species - which is more than in the United States and Canada combined. Panama is a truly diverse melting pot of cultures. The largest single group of people is Mestizos, of mixed Spanish and indigenous heritage, in addition to seven different indigenous groups.

Panama Condensed - 10 night itinerary.  From £1995pp (based on two sharing). Single supplement on request.

These vibrant cultures include the Kuna in the San Blas Islands on the Caribbean side; the Embera and Wounaan in the Darién Province; the Ngobe and Bugle in the province of Chiriquí, Bocas del Toro and Veraguas; the Naso and the Teribes in the province of Bocas del Toro.

Throughout its history, Panama has had its fair share of political instability and corruption. Furthermore, since gaining independence from Colombia in 1903, it has largely been under the control of the United States.  It was not until December 31st, 1999, when Panama finally gained independence and all canal-related lands, buildings, infrastructure and administration were handed back to the Panamanians.

Prices from £2,874 per person for a 14 night itinerary.

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Getting there

There are no direct flights from the UK to Panama. European airlines flying to Panama are KLM from London Heathrow (via Amsterdam), Iberia (via Madrid) and Air France (via Paris).  Other options from London Heathrow include Avianca via Bogota.  Also there are flights from London Heathrow to Panama City via the United States (Houston and Miami) with United or American Airlines.  Any flights via the US require an ESTA application.  Regional departures include Manchester, Birmingham, Newcastle, Bristol, Cardiff and Edinburgh.

Combinations

Panama can also be combined with trips to Costa Rica and/or Guatemala in Central America, and South American countries including Peru and Ecuador.

At a Glance

Home to the awe-inspiring Panama Canal, considered to be the 8th wonder of the world.
One of the most biologically diverse areas in the world, with more than 950 bird species.
Lake Gatún – the largest man-made lake in the world.
Diverse landscapes and cultures.
- The best time to visit is during the dry season, from November to mid April, yet Panama can be visited year-round. Note that short downpours occur most days on the Caribbean side, even during the dry season. The average temperature is between 25°−30°C and humidity is always high in the lowlands.
- Superb snorkelling and diving in Bocas del Toro.
- Rich historical and cultural heritage.
- Panama Canal Railway – the world’s first transcontinental railway.

Foreign Office advice

We’ve partnered with the Foreign and Commonwealth Office Travel Aware campaign to help provide top tips and advice for planning for your trip abroad. It’s important to do some research before you travel to learn about any necessary visas and vaccinations required for entry to your destination, understand any unusual laws and customs and to be aware of the latest travel advice for the region. Click on the link below for more information on what to prepare for your trip overseas. You can also sign up for email alerts and follow @FCOtravel on Twitter for alerts whilst you are away.

Visit gov.uk/travelaware for more information

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Best time to go
  • JAN
  • FEB
  • MAR
  • APR
  • MAY
  • JUN
  • JUL
  • AUG
  • SEP
  • OCT
  • NOV
  • DEC
Time Difference

GMT - 5 hours

Currency

US Dollar

Language

Spanish

Average flight times

12 hours 40 minutes

  • Average temperature

    Average rainfall

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We promise that a member of our specialist reservation teams will reply personally to your holiday enquiry before 5.30pm if received before 12.00pm (Monday to Friday). Enquiries received after 12.00pm will be replied to within 24-hours (excluding Sundays).

If your enquiry is of an urgent nature, please telephone our dedicated reservation teams on the numbers listed below.

Our lines are open from 9.00am to 5.30pm Monday-Friday and from 9.30am to 4.30pm Saturday.

  • Greece: 020 8758 4758
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  • Portugal, the Azores, Spain, Italy, Sicily and Scandinavia: 020 8758 4722
  • Latin America: 020 8758 4774
  • Marketing: 020 8758 4731

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