PANAMA’S PACIFIC BEACHES
About an hour southwest of Panama City, the Interamerican Highway arcs toward the Pacific Coast, allowing easy access to a forty-mile stretch of getaway beaches.
Here you’ll find oceanfront resorts, surf breaks, and wide stretches of sandy solitude.
The town of Bejuco marks the exit of the narrow Chame Peninsula.
Accessed by a long-awaited paved road, this area curves northeast for 22 miles. To the north, mangroves shelter herons, egrets, and pelicans.
On its Pacific side, the peninsula’s pale sand beaches are ideal for sailing and kite surfing.
Punta Chame, the fishing village located at the tip, is becoming a preferred vacation destination.
Playa Gorgona & Playa Coronado
Continuing southwest along the Interamericana, you’ll find the next two major beaches.
Playa Gorgona (black sand) and its neighbor, Playa Coronado (marbled grey-brown sand), are located around 50 miles from Panama City.
Gorgona’s principal attraction is the Malibu surf break.
To the southwest sits Coronado, one of the country’s earliest beach destinations.
Wealthy Panama City residents vacationed here for decades, before it was ever known to the outside world.
Although busy on weekends and holidays, the beach and golf resorts are uncrowded mid-week.
El Palmar, Santa Clara & Farallón
Playa El Palmar, located eight miles southwest of Coronado near the town of San Carlos, is the site of two popular surf breaks, each offering swells up to six feet.
Playa Rio Mar and Playa Corona, the next two surf beaches, are better suited for beginners.
Playa Santa Clara, 68 miles from the capital, is perhaps the prettiest beach in the area—a wide strip of pale sand, backed by palms.
Playa Farallón, also known as Playa Blanca, lies just beyond Playa Santa Clara (around 90 minutes from Panama City, near the town of Rio Hato).
This light-colored beach is anchored by resorts featuring amenities such as golf, spa services, fitness centers, and fine dining.
Coastal temperatures are fairly consistent year-round, ranging from the high 80s to the mid-70s.
Water temperatures hover near 80°F on sunny days. The rainy season, with higher surf and fewer crowds, extends from May to November.
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