If you like the low-key version of the Caribbean, you’ll love Bocas del Toro. This archipelago of seven islands off Panama—which also has dozens of cays and roughly 200 islets—has the powdery white beaches and swaying palm trees of more famous Caribbean isles, but far fewer crowds. The heart of the islands is the roughly 25-square-mile Isla Colón, whose main city is Bocas Town, but the small islands offer treasure troves for exploring. Big luxury resorts have not come to the Bocas de Toro travel scene (yet), but in general, when you travel to Bocas del Toro, you’ll find a laid-back island culture, some world-class snorkeling and some of the best surfing the region. Read on in this Bocas del Toro travel guide to start planning your vacation.
Things Not to Miss in Bocas del Toro
• Snorkeling on Isla Solarte
• Hiking in Bastimentos National Park
• Sleeping in an open-air bungalow
• Watching the butterflies at Bocas Butterfly Garden
• See nesting marine turtles
When to Go to Bocas del Toro
There’s a good reason that everything here is so green. While the dry, sunniest months of the Bocas del Toro travel season come in late winter, and then August through October, rain can still happen any time of year. If you want to see the native turtles during nesting season, come from April until September.