With an archipelago that boasts impeccable beaches, turquoise waters, and a distinct Afro- Caribbean culture, this region has become a must-see for visitors to Panama. Located along the Caribbean coast in the northwestern part of the country, Bocas del Toro is known for its beautiful islands and laidback vibe, a combination that tends to attract younger backpacker types. Still, the services and amenities offered here are extensive, which makes it possible for travelers of all ages to enjoy the abundance of natural beauty that this region is famous for.
The largest and most developed island in the Bocas archipelago is Isla Colón. It is from here that most visitors will begin their exploration of Bocas. On the southern tip of the island lies Bocas town. Hotels, hostels, and luxury bungalows are abundant – visitors certainly won’t have difficult finding a place to stay – and the nightlife is some of Panama’s best. Isla Colón’s outdoor areas are attractive and offer visitors a number of white-sand beaches and good surfing spots to choose from.
A ten-minute boat ride away, Isla Bastimentos is the second largest island in the archipelago. Its north shore beaches are some of the best in the region—both Wizard and Red Frog Beach are tranquil and gorgeous spots to spend the day.
Several other islands in the archipelago are more remote and less developed, but can nonetheless be visited. These include Isla Carenero, Isla Solarte and Isla Cristóbal. The services offered on these islands are minimal, although there are some secluded hotels and eco-lodges.