Panama is a large isthmus strip with a total area of 75,517 km2. It is located at the east end of Central America between 7° 11' and 9° 37' north latitude. It has borders with Costa Rica on the west and Colombia on the east. The north coast is on the Caribbean Sea and the south on the Pacific Ocean. This location keeps Panama safe from hurricanes that affect most other countries in the Caribbean, but rainfall is abundant. Time Zone: Eastern Standard Time (EST), GMT – 5
Panama has a tropical climate. Temperatures vary little throughout the year, commonly around 85-95º F (about 29-35º C). Colder temperatures occur in mountainous regions such as Western highlands. Temperatures are usually higher on the Pacific than on the Caribbean. Panama has mainly two seasons: the dry season from December to April with sunny days and fresh breeze, and the rainy season from May to November with a more humid environment and lots of rain.
Documents: Tourist Visa requirements vary according to the country of origin. For further information please contact the Panamanian embassy or consulate in your country:http://www.panamaenelexterior.gob.pa/. Original passport with minimum of three (3) months of validity is mandatory. Vaccines: No vaccines are required. Health care: Health insurance coverage is supported by the visitor. There are private hospitals and smalls clinics opened 24 hours. In terms of health care, Panama is a safe country.
The official currency is the Balboa. It exists only in coins and has the same value as the U.S. dollar. Both, coins and U.S. notes are of legal tender throughout the territory. Foreign currency and traveler checks are not accepted in any commercial business. There are only few currency exchange offices in Panama City; we highly recommend bringing cash (U.S. dollars) in small bills and credit cards such as Master Card or VISA. There are ATMs (automated teller machine) available for cash withdrawal almost everywhere in Panama City and in the rest of the country except inside national parks and remotes places such as islands and mountains.
Language: Spanish is the official language. Water: In Panama City the water is potable and safe to drink directly from the faucet. We recommend bottled water for the rest of the country. Electricity: The electrical outlet is the Japanese socket (two flat parallel prongs) and uses 110 volts. Phone: For international calls from landline telephone you must dial 00 + country code + phone number.
Panama is a 100% tropical destination which means that you will need sun protection. On the other hand rainstorms can come without warning, depending on the season and area. We recommend our visitors to bring: · Sunscreen · Insect repellent · Light clothes · Sweater with long sleeves for evenings and highlands · Swimsuit · Rain coat or poncho · Broad brimmed hat · Prescribed drugs · Plug adapter to Japanese socket If the trip includes nature and night expeditions: · Flashlight or headlamp · Binoculars · Hiking or good walking shoes · Camera with flash