Panama City and the canal region (6hrs’ drive), a few days at a rural retreat in Boquete ( 5-6 hrs scenic drive) with a visit to a coffee farm; Boca Chica – 3hrs’ drive to the west along a scenic road on the Pacific coast - the gateway to the Gulf of Chiriquí Marine National Park with its many luxuriant green islands, palm-tree-fringed white beaches and a variety of wildlife.
For more detailed information visit our When To Go section.
Getting Local Currency
The national currency, the balboa, is at parity with the US dollar, and only US banknotes are used. (There are some local coins equivalent to US cents). There’s an ATM in Chitre where you can use a UK credit or debit card. You may have ask your bank to authorise withdrawals before you leave the UK, and amounts may be limited. You are best advised to acquire dollar bills before travelling to the province. Panamanians are sometimes reluctant to accept US dollar notes of higher denominations.
At the moment (2015) there are no domestic flights by light aircraft from Panama City to Chitre although there is a usable airstrip there; by road it’s a journey of about 3hrs.
Chitre: Carnival (Mardi Gras) with dancing and water flights; Fiesta de San Juan Batista, patron saint of Chitre, 24 June with bullfights (no killing); city foundation 19 October, with parades and costumes.
Parita: Corpus Christi, with masked dancers;
Ocu: Festival de Manito, August, a 3 day festival dedicated to the maintaining the region’s traditional cultures, with folklore groups; Festival of saint Sebastian, Ocu’s patron saint, January 20-23 approx, with folklore programmes and an agricultural fair.
Spanish, English and native tongues.
GMT -5 hrs.
When To Go
Situated within the tropics, the peninsula has a balmy climate with high temperatures (over 30°C) all year round. Although there is plenty of sun the drier months tend to be Feb-Mar and Sep-Oct. The region lies outside the main hurricane belt.
If you still have questions, please contact us and one of our Travel Experts will be happy to help.
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Lina Fuller - Travel Expert
Lina's passion for the continent where she was born really took off when she moved to Córdoba (Argentina) to study, spending the holidays travelling between Argentina and her native Colombia.
Juliet Ellwood - Travel Expert
After graduating with a degree in Anthropology and History and having been fascinated by Latin America since childhood by the book featuring photos of Nazca, Juliet first visited the region in 2003. Since then, Juliet has visited the majority of countries in Latin America but has particularly extensive experience with Peru, a country she loves for many reasons but not least, its incredible archaeological richness and delicious food!
Ben Line - Travel Expert
Ben fell in love with Latin America on a six month backpacking trip from Colombia to Mexico in 1995. Since then he has explored most of South America, including living in Peru for a year. He is now Head of Sales.
Hannah Waterhouse - Travel Expert
Hannah had an early introduction to Latin America when her family moved to Ecuador and she returned to study in Buenos Aires for a year before backpacking across the continent.
Millie Davies - Travel Expert
Having caught the travel bug as a child, Millie has travelled all over Latin America before making her home in Buenos Aires for 3 years.
Sophie Barber - Travel Expert
Sophie lived in Chile before joining us and has travelled extensively across Latin America, from Mexico to the furthest tip of Patagonia and beyond to Antarctica.