There is so much to write about Colón Island that I decided to put information in a single post that will serve you on your next trip to Colón Island.
Best months to go
January, February and March, however, for some reason September and October tend to rain little, even the Fair of the Sea, The Colon Island Fair is taken place on September.
Where to lodging in Colon Island?
There are many places where to stay and for all types of budgets, from a hammock in a hostel for $8.00 a night to a room in a hotel for $350.00 a night.
Not all appear on hotel search online engines and some do not accept credit cards.
It is an Island that many travelers, adventurers and tourists go to, which it is better to have a hotel booking.
In this journey, I took advantage of a hotel offer (on those pages that do offers), I analyzed it, it was very good, so I bought it.
I recommend this hotel, people are really friendly, one day I talked with a man who just bought Tamales, I asked where he bought it and without thinking about it he give me one, I couldn´t say anything, he put it on my plate and cut the string so I could eat it,
It has a good breakfast (it is a buffet) and service, which at the moment I have not seen in others hotels, it has a special room (not a bedroom), where you can leave you suitcases, change your clothes, you can imagine! I arrived at 7:00 a.m.
After 12 hours by traveling, doing this, it is the best, also if there is an available room, they give you immediately, you do not have to wait.
The checkout is at 11:00 am, and if you bus or flight departure late, you can leave your suitcase, go to the beach and when you come back to the hotel, you can take a shower.
There is a shower in that special room you will find a clean towel and soap.
The hotel is Bocas Paradise Hotel, it is in front the sea.
I know that I have written a lot about the hotel, but I thing that it offers helps a lot to take advantage of the trip and I have to say it.
It better to take the tours with local agencies, there are many in the island and not with the guy who offers the tours in the hotel.
I did twice and I am totally regret it, he offers a service but he gives other thing, and how I say the good things I also say the bad things.
Where to eat in Colón Island?
You definitely can eat delicious there and how is the custom in Panama.
If you are at the beach or in front of the sea, you eat seafood, of course, there are other options, few, but there are.
The full-day tours make a stop in some restaurant, however, those usually are expensive, even though they may look like a rustic town restaurant.
Now, at Colón Island there are food for different kind of budgets, if you to the local restaurants, you can get a full menu for less than $5.00. One day I pass in front of one, it was like a rustic town restaurant, I asked for a chicken with patacones (crushed fried bananas), it is costs $3.00.
Of course, there are also restaurants with dishes cost over $20.00. Be careful, many do not accept credit card.
I say this, because many travelers pay part of the trip with credit card, on the one hand, that helps to do not have so much cash on the hand.
On another hand, they accumulate points or miles which is useful to travel to other countries.
If you want a traditional Panamanian breakfast, you can go to the Chitré Restaurant (on 2nd Street).
You will have: empanadas, Panamanian tortillas and others that we love.
Advices and extra information
- Bring cap/ hat, sunscreen,
- If you want to the jungle tour, bring: repellent, sneakers and clothes that cover you a lot,
- Leave your jewelries and expensive things in your house,
- If you want to know Bocas and do not spent a lot, book in a place that have kitchen for the guests and you can buy food in the Island,
- There are ATM´s,
- Check the tours that the agencies offer, they are on the Island, in the Street by the sea. Then chose the tour that you will do every day. The prices are almost the same in each agency, it depends on the places that has each package,
- A rain cape in case it rains on your way,
- Camera and something to protect it, in case of raining,
- A lot of places do not accept credit card,
- Bring your own water for the tours.
How to get there to Colón Island?
It is the best option, by the moment there is only one airline, Air Panama, that makes flights from Panama City, it takes one hour.
The departure is from Marcos A. Gelabert International Airport (PAC) in Albrook (not Albrook Mall), the cost is about $205.00, round trip.
They are at Albrook Bus Terminal (Gran Terminal Nacional de Transporte de Albrook) (it is a few meters from Albrook Mall).
The trip takes 11 hours, the buses are not uncomfortable, but it can be tired.
The trip until Almirante costs $27.80.
If you are one of those who get dizzy from curves, ups and downs, I recommend that you have a bag on hand for any accident, as well as a coat.
Panama- Almirante 6:00 p.m., 6:30p.m. and 7:00 p.m.
Almirante – Panamá 8:00 a.m. and 6:00 p.m.
It is better to consult for the Schedules, they can change
- Albrook (Panamá): (+507) 303-6326
- Almirante (Bocas del Toro): (+507) 758-3278
- Changuinola (Bocas del Toro): (+507) 758-8455
- Chiriquí Grande (Bocas del Toro): (+507) 756-9631
From there you take a taxi to the dock, $1,00 per person, the taxi drivers know at what time the buses arrive and they are waiting for the passengers to take them to the dock.
The taxi is shared with other people. The trip takes 1 or 2 minutes.
Then you have to take a boat to Colon Island, the trip takes 30 minutes.
For Panamanians, the ticket costs $5.00 and $6.00 for the foreigners.
This is a total of: $33.80 each way, $67.60 round trip.
You can buy the round-trip boat ticket, $8.00 for Panamanians (you save two dollars).
You only have to keep very well the ticket and to be very early to the trip back, because if you miss the boat, you will miss the bus, the boat leave every 30 minutes. I recommend you to buy the bus ticket (to arrive), the day before, you can only do it at Albrook Bus Terminal and you can buy the back ticket in Colon Island at Taxi25.
Also, you must buy it previously to your trip, it is just to make sure your trip, especially in the high season.
This is the option the one that I recommend the least, because of the way from Chiriquí to Almirante is just for expert drivers on this road.
It has precipices and for what I have heard, many people have gone downhill.
Yet, if you decide for this option, you can even take your car to Colon Island or leave it at a parking lot for these cases in Almirante.