Expert Travel Tips for a Panama Family Vacation

Panama Family Vacation: recommended agent
Thumbs up to family travel in Panama!

 

I often get asked what travel agents and tour operators to book a Panama family vacation through. During my three-and-a-half years living in Panama, I’ve been on the look out for a top Panama travel agent to recommend to friends and families. I decided to ask Ancon Expedition  to be my partner agent in Panama for the following reasons:

 

  • They have a well-earned reputation for being the best in the business
  • Their focus is purely on Panama and they know everything there is to know about visiting the isthmus.
  • They are passionate about the country and know how to create a family holiday in Panama that both parents and kids will love
  • Their guides are all fluent in English and experts in their field
  • They are very experienced at working with international clients and meeting their expectations
  • They offer competitive pricing; sometimes more than other local agents but in my view they offer the best and most reliable service.
  • Ancon Expeditions has a very strong presence in Panama and an excellent reputation. Many of my friends use them regularly and / or refer their visiting guests to them. A Dutch friend of mine also worked for them and has only good things to say about them.

 

Discover #Panama on an unforgettable family holiday with @AnconExp! #FamilyTravel #TBIN Click To Tweet

Panama
The Panama City Skyline

 

 

Panama Family Vacation: the panama canal
Panama with kids

 

 

Testimonial 

Our first family to use Ancon Expeditions had this to say about them:

“Thank you for recommending Ancon Expeditions to us, our trip with them worked a treat. We particularly enjoyed the bird watching and wildlife, as well as spending some time on the Panama Canal. The visit to the Miraflores Lock was very special. Our 3 days at Tranquilo Bay were tremendous. I went snorkelling twice, one time for over 2 hours and saw a variety of colourful fish and coral.”

 

A Panama Family Vacation with Ancon Expeditions

Here, we’d like to introduce to Melanie Endres, the Sales & Marketing Director of Ancon Expeditions, to tell us a bit more about why families will love Panama.

 

Panama Family Vacation: Ancon Expeditions
Melanie pictured at studio of local Panamanian artist and designer, Helene Breebaart, in one of the designer’s dresses. Ancon can create a customised tour for visitors interested in fashion design to meet local artists and visit their workshops.

 

1. Please tell us a little bit about Ancon Expeditions and your experience as a tour operator / agent.

Ancon Expeditions is one of the first tour operators in Panama and celebrates its 20 years’ anniversary in 2017! The origins of the company’s operation come from a mostly ecological and nature conversation background. Today we have a far broader spectrum of travelers ranging from nature lovers and avid birders up to very high-end clients, incentive groups, scientific groups, small cruise ships and of course, families!

 

2. Why do you think Panama is such a great destination for families?

Panama Family Vacation: zip-lining
Zip-lining in the Azuero peninsula

 

The diversity! There is SO much to do in Panama. On land there’s history, culture, indigenous people, nature, wildlife, museums, and adventurous activities such as rafting, ziplining, rappelling and kayaking. The sea offers incredible marine life and activities such as snorkeling, diving, swimming and SUPs.

 

3. What is your favourite destination in Panama and why?

Panama Family Vacation: Chiriqui
Coffee plantations in Chiriqui

 

I love the Chiriqui Highlands due to its vast outdoor adventure and nature treasures. Also the fresh climate offers a pleasant change and its beautiful lush cloud forest are fun to explore. It’s an amazing environment to escape to from the city and the people are very heartwarming, hardworking, down to earth and humble.

 

4. List three must-see or must-do experiences for families visiting Panama?

Panama Family Vacation:: The Embera Drúa Dance
The Embera Drúa Dance (photo credit: Yasmin Pineda)

 

  1. The Panama Canal – either on our small expedition boat to observe wildlife, or from the locks’ expedition centre.
  2. The Embera Indians
  3. The Azuero region with its folkloric heritage offers many off-the-beaten track experiences with locals
  4. If I’d pick one more, then it’d be the Bocas del Toro islands. For the Caribbean food, the fun laid-back people and of course the beaches. The snorkeling and islands are just terrific! Caribbean style!

 

5. Share your perfect family itinerary for a two-week holiday in Panama

Panama Family Vacation:: A guide to Bocas del Toro. The Zapatillas Cays
Bocas del Toro

 

A combination of Panama City and the Gamboa area (4-5 nights). The Azuero region for folkloric and cultural experiences (3 nights). The Chiriqui Highlands for outdoors (3 nights). Bocas del Toro for a nice Caribbean ocean in the end (2-3 nights)

 

6. What kind of hotels do you work with?

Panama Family Vacation:: Boutique hotels in Panama
Boutique hotels in Panama

 

We mostly work with boutique and luxury hotels but also with mid-range accommodation depending on the guest’s budget and expectations. We do not preferably work with large resorts or budget accommodations.

 

7. How do you accommodate large families (e.g. families with 3+ children) in hotels?

Panama Family Vacation: hotels for families
Family hotel rooms

 

Usually two connecting or adjacent rooms or Suites, and at hotels if there is a family room/ loft or a villa then that would be the perfect choice to have them all together or nearby at least.

 

8. Do you accept enquiries for:

Panama Family Vacation: Panama Canal rainforest boat adventure
Panama Canal Rainforest Boat Adventure

 

Day-tours only? 

We usually handle full packages but can on an individual basis also just take care of day tours if clients live in Panama or stay for a longer time and only need day tour arrangements. Our most popular day tours are the Panama Canal Rainforest Boat Adventure for wildlife observation on Gatun Lake and the cultural visit at the Embera Indigenous Village are very popular among families with children.

Transport only?

We work with packages including tours, hotel and transportation. Individual reservations for transfers can be arranged on an exceptional basis but we aim at full packages.

 

9. What makes you stand out from other tour operators and agents working in Panama?

Panama Family Vacation: A birding group led by Ancon Expeditions
A birding group led by Ancon Expeditions (Photo credit: Richard Cahill)

 

We count with the country’s best top-notch guides and the repeat positive and impressive feedback of our clients, especially very well-travelled and high-demanding clients prove the exceptionality of our Naturalist Guides.

Also our team in the office is bilingual, very efficient and very accommodating to any tailor-made necessities and wishes of clients. We love our work and have a great passion not only for the country but also for making our guests’ life the most comfortable and enjoyable, may it be during the planning phase, while they are in Panama or following up after their trip.

 

10. Other: Please include anything else you would like readers to know about Ancon Expeditions.

Panama Family Vacation: beach
Panama for families

 

We assure you will have a unique and memorable time in Panama if you choose to travel with us and we look forward to share this amazing and beautiful country with everybody who is ready for it!

To make an enquiry for a family holiday to Panama, please visit the Ancon Expedition website.

 

Discover #Panama on an unforgettable family holiday with @AnconExp! #FamilyTravel #TBIN Click To Tweet

 

Family Guide to Panama

For more information on family travel in Panama see my guide to Panama with Kids.

Panama With Kids

 

 

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Expert travel tips for a Panama Family Vacation via @farflunglands

 

This is a partner post. The travel agents/operators profiled on farflunglands.com are chosen and curated by us. We feature agents on an invitation-only basis based on a number of criteria. We consider, among other things, their experience in family travel, fluency in English, itineraries offered and the level of customer service pre, during and post-travel.

Ancon Expedition pays us a fixed annual subscription. We do not take commissions from Ancon Expeditions for any bookings made through farflunglands.com.

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