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  • Actively explore Panama up close on guided excursions right from the ship. read more

  • Encounter Panama's nature by land and sea. read more

  • Local guides provide an authentic Panama experience. read more

  • Relax on remote beaches accessible only by small ship. read more

  • A Panama expedition cruise is like living an issue of National Geographic. read more

  • Come face to face with Panama's wildlife. read more

  • Enjoy pristine Caribbean island life and experience local Kuna culture. read more

  • Transit the historic Panama Canal aboard a small ship. read more

  • Visit remote villages like Darien Embera. read more

Panama

Mountains, jungles, beaches and an astounding biodiversity of flora, fauna and the Panama Canal. Panama has it all. Visit dazzling national parks, pristine coastline and over 1,500 islands with daily opportunities for shore landings in remote regions. Superb local guides interpret colonial heritage and cultural diversity springing from 7 different indigenous groups and a melting pot of world cultures.

Panama Small Ship Cruises

Panama's largest selection of small ship cruises. The coastal landscape and cultural geography of Panama make it perfect for small ships. Explore the Panama Canal, unspoiled beaches, jungle rivers and remote villages only accessible by water. Cruise where the big ships can't aboard a small ship cruise to Panama. 2014 is the 100th Anniversary of the Panama Canal! 

Panama Wilderness Adventures

Explore Panama from upscale jungle lodges in the company of expert naturalist guides. Our Panama small group tours and cruise extensions are designed for nature lovers seeking an in-depth exploration without sacrificing comfort. Our Panama tours are perfect for couples, families and small groups; our experts will help you choose the best trip for your interest, ability and budget.


Panama Adventure Cruise
Special Offer Available
From $3850
7 days
Travel Season
MarAprMayJunOctNov

Cruise

Panama Adventure Cruise

Discover natural Panama up close and in style from the 24-passenger Discovery catamaran, the only all Panama small ship cruise. Also the only guaranteed day time transit the Panama Canal by small ship. Explore tropical waters and jungle rivers by sea kayak and zodiac inflatable craft in the company of expert naturalist guides. The Panama adventure small ship cruise is the perfect cruise for active travelers who want to explore Panama up close.
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Treasures of Costa Rica & The Panama Canal
Special Offer Available
From $2990
8 days
Travel Season
DecJanFebMar

Cruise

Treasures of Costa Rica & The Panama Canal

Experience a harmonious balance between conventional cruising and private yachting on a luxurious small ship cruise to Costa Rica and Panama. Cruise to the nature reserves and national parks of Isla Coiba and Manuel Antonio, witness life in the San Blas and cross the celebrated Panama Canal. Your home base is the 36-cabin mega yacht Variety Voyager.
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Costa Rica & the Panama Canal
From $5990
8 days
Travel Season
DecJanFebMar

Cruise

Costa Rica & the Panama Canal

Explore famous national parks, tropical gardens and wildlife reserves of Costa Rica and Panama aboard the 62-guest National Geographic Sea Lion. Transit the legendary Panama Canal visit Barro Colorado with scientist escorts from the Smithsonian Research Station. Hike, kayak, swim and snorkel along wildlife-rich coastlines.
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Panama to Costa Rica with Monteverde, Sarapiqui & Arenal Volcano
From $7080
15 days
Travel Season
DecJanFebMar

Cruise

Panama to Costa Rica with Monteverde, Sarapiqui & Arenal Volcano

Cruise the legendary Panama Canal and Costa Rica's Osa Peninsula & Manuel Antonio aboard the National Geographic Sea Lion. Then visit Nicaragua. Explore famous national parks, tropical gardens and wildlife reserves. Hike, kayak, swim & snorkel. Nicaragua amazes us w/ family haciendas, nature reserves & artisan towns.
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Panama Discovery
From $2450
8 days
Travel Season
AugSepDec

Land

Panama Discovery

Experience the highlights of Panama on this exciting 8 day Panama Discovery adventure. Discover Panama with expert naturalist guides as you traverse Panama Canal waters, hike in cloud forests searching for the elusive Resplendent Quetzal, and explore the underwater world of the Caribbean Sea.
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Best of Panama
From $2995
10 days
Travel Season
Dec

Land

Best of Panama

Explore the Panama Canal with its natural and historic legacy, enjoy cloud forest environments filled with life, and learn about extinct and thriving indigenous cultures. The best of Panama!
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Panama Family Adventure
From $950
9 days
Travel Season
Dec

Land

Panama Family Adventure

On this epic family adventure explore the Panama Canal and the Chagres River, go on an adventurous white river rafting or canopy zip-lining trip in the Chiriqui highlands, snorkel in the Caribbean waters of Bocas del Toro and end it all with a historical journey through the old parts of Panama City
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Bocas del Toro Adventure
From $690
3 days
Travel Season
JanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec

Land

Bocas del Toro Adventure

Five hundred years ago, the great discoverer Christopher Columbus arrived at a tropical paradise in the western Caribbean coast of what is now Panama. Overwhelmed by the most incredible contrasts of vivid color and sheer unspoiled natural surroundings, Columbus decided to drop anchor and immerse in this heavenly place.
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San Blas Islands & the Guna Indians
From $600
3 days
Travel Season
JanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec

Land

San Blas Islands & the Guna Indians

Explore the San Blas islands with local Guna native guides. Enjoy pristine Caribbean island life from a Guna-owned lodge and actively experience Guna culture on this San Blas Island adventure.
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Panama is located in Central America, bordering Costa Rica to the north and Colombia to the south, with coastlines on the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea. It is a narrow, elongated country that links the North and South American continents and through which ships pass between the Pacific Ocean and the Atlantic Ocean along the 80km-long Panama Canal.

A large part of Panama is uninhabited - perfect for small ship cruising. There are hundreds of offshore islands, including the San Blas and Bocas del Toro archipelagos.

In addition to the mainland, Panama owns many hundreds of offshore islands, including the San Blas and Bocas del Toro archipelagos. Panama is mountainous inland, with flat coastal lowlands, and rainforests covering much of the country. Much of the land is protected in the interests of its wildlife. A large part of the country is uninhabited (perfect for small ship cruising), with the majority of the near 3 million population living in the main cities of Panama City (the country's capital) and Colon, in the canal region or in the Pacific lowlands. Spanish is official language of Panama, but English and several indigenous languages are spoken.

Panama Cuisine

Panama food mainly comprises American and Spanish cuisine, but also spans an array of tastes and worldwide cultural influences such as Indian, Arabic, Italian, Chinese and Mexican. The exquisite dishes come from the traditional recipes. As Panama is a coastal region, expect a lot of seafood. Food in Panama consists of fresh and healthy vegetables as well as fruits. Since Panama has a little more Caribbean influence than other Central American countries, you'll see a lot more plaintain than beans here. Panamanian food is generally mild and not overly spicy. As with other parts of Central America, the favorite meat seems to be chicken. The food of Bocas del Toro is even more Caribbean than the rest of Panama. Many of the dishes contain coconut, unlike in the more Latin parts of Panama.

Panama food with all its variations, is indeed exotic. Traditional dishes include: Carimañola, a roll made from ground and boiled yucca and stuffed with minced meat and boiled eggs and then fried. Tortillas, made with ground maize and then fried like pancakes. Empanadas, made from flour or corn pastries, are generally filled with cheese, chicken or even meat. Patacones, green fried plantains, cut into pieces and fried. Tamales, a popular local delicacy made from boiled and ground corn with spices, chicken or pork being stuffed inside and boiled after wrapping it in a banana leaf. Tajadas, ripe plantain cut in slices length-ways and baked with cinnamon.

Panama's has about 100 microclimates, so weather varies by location. Mountain areas such as Boquete are cooler and windier, while Caribbean locales like Bocas del Toro are more rainy and humid. The driest part of Panama is the Azuero Peninsula on the south coast. The hottest part of Panama is around David (on the southwest border near Costa Rica). The length of day is 12 hours year-round because Panama is near the equator. The sunrise is at approximately 6:20am and sunset is at 6:20pm year-round.

Panama Weather by Season

Panama’s seasons are opposite of the United States. Winter in Panama is known as summer up north and vice versa. Winter in Panama refers to the rainy season (May-December), and summer in Panama refers to the dry season (December-May). This means that in the cold months of winter time in the north when many people are seeking relief in warmer climates, Panama is having its summer with the highest temperatures of the year. The school calendar is also reversed, with school "summer" vacations from mid-December through February.

Panama's rainy season is from late May to early December, while the dry season is from late December to early May - nearly exactly the same seasonal weather pattern as South Florida, except for the complete absence of hurricanes and the often lower humidity. The rainy season does not mean continuous rain. Usually mornings are sunny, with intermittent heavy rain in the afternoon. Continuous overcast and drizzle is not the norm except sometimes in the rainiest months of October and November. Local microclimates vary widely. Annual rainfall in the city of Panama is about the same as Miami at 8 feet per year. The rainiest areas are in the western mountains on the Caribbean. Rain is worth big money to Panama because it is what floats the ships through the Panama Canal. The dry season can be extreme in some areas on the south side of Panama in March and April.

Explaining the Absense of Hurricanes in Panama

All hurricanes originating off the coast of Africa are moved by prevailing winds and steering currents westward and northward. A few brush the northern coast and islands of South America along 11 degrees latitude north of the Equator. But Panama is tucked away at 9 degrees latitude below the reach of hurricanes. The same holds true of all hurricanes spawning in the Caribbean and the Gulf of Mexico.

Panama Average Temperature & Rainfall

Panama City

Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
Avg. High (°F) 92 93 95 95 94 93 93 93 91 91 91 91
Avg. Low (°F) 65 65 65 67 70 70 70 70 70 70 68 67
Rainfall (Inches) 1.1 0.4 0.5 2.5 9 9 6 9 10 13 10 4

Caribbean: Portobelo / Bocas del Toro

Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
Avg. High (°F) 87 87 88 88 89 89 89 89 89 89 89 88
Avg. Low (°F) 68 68 68 70 720 720 71 71 71 71 71 70
Rainfall (Inches) 6 10 3.3 13 79 10 10 16 12 6 12 20

Bocas Inn

Bocas Inn

The Bocas Inn is a comfortable 7-bedroom sea-front lodge located in Bocas del Toro, Panama. Hot water showers are provided by solar energy.
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Finca Lerida Hotel

Finca Lerida Hotel

The Finca Lerida Hotel is a unique and beautiful privately owned preserve in Boquete, Panama, in the buffer zone of Baru Volcano National Park.
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Gamboa Rainforest Resort

Gamboa Rainforest Resort

Escape to this jungle paradise just 45 minutes outside Panama City to encounter nature without leaving the comforts of a full-service exotic resort.
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National Geographic Sea Bird & Sea Lion

National Geographic Sea Bird & Sea Lion

Twin expedition ships National Geographic Sea Lion and Sea Bird accommodate 62 guests with special features including a hydrophone and Splash-Cam. Onboard experts from National Geographic make these ships unique. 
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Panama Discovery

Panama Discovery

Panama catamaran Discovery is a 24-guest, 110-foot vessel boasting spacious view cabins, a BBQ, sun deck and a unique kayak-lowering platform.
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Variety Voyager

Variety Voyager

Cruise in fine style through the Panama Canal and along the Costa Rica and Colombia coasts aboard the 36-cabin Variety Voyager mega yacht, launched in May 2012.
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