Panama — Beyond the Canal

Church of San Francisco is one of Panama City’s iconic landmarks.

Easy air access and a sense of history are making Panama an increasingly popular destination outside of the typical Panama Canal transit. 

“Long known primarily for the Canal, the country is attracting visitors interested in the country’s history, tradition and culture as well as its ease of access,” says Rob Harper, director of business development at Namu Travel Group, noting that Panama has the region’s largest airport, making direct flights from most U.S. cities accessible. 

Other key selling points: the ruins of the original 500-year-old Spanish settlement, the modern downtown area and the Casco Viejo French and Spanish colonial district, says Harper. Nearby are also rainforest national parks and the Canal itself. 

“Try the bustling dining scene for a taste of what is making the city an up and coming foodie destination,” Harper suggests. 

Wiseman also points out that the Dreams Delight Playa Bonita has been seeing strong group and FIT business in Q1, driving further success in the destination. 

“Like Costa Rica, this is a destination that allows travelers to experience two types of getaways — beach and city — in one, so it’s versatile and great for all types of vacationers,” says Scott Wiseman, president of Travel Impressions

Panama — Beyond the Canal