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Getting Here

Bocas del Toro 

If you're looking for an adventure brimming with tropical beaches, lush rainforests, warm, clear waters, and vibrant marine life, Bocas del Toro should be at the top of your travel list. Here's a guide on how to get to Isla Colón, the archipelago's main island on which Bird Island Bungalows is located.

By Air

The quickest and most convenient way to reach Bocas del Toro is by air.

You can catch a domestic flight from Albrook "Marcos A. Gelabert" International Airport (PAC) in Panama City to Bocas del Toro International Airport (BOC) on Isla Colón. Air Panama and FlyTrip operate multiple daily flights, starting at around $80 one-way. Flying to Bocas gives you stunning aerial views of Panama's diverse landscapes, and the flight takes about one hour.


NOTE: most international flights to Panama arrive at Panama City (PTY) which is a different airport and is located 18 miles (28 km) from Albrook Airport. You will need to take this into account when booking flights and leave sufficient time to cross the city (one-hour minimum).

By Bus and Boat

For adventurous souls, and a cheaper journey, a combination of bus to Almirante (the gateway to Bocas del Toro from the mainland) and then a water taxi is the best option.


  • From Panama City: depart from the Panama Albrook terminal to Almirante, Journey time is around 10 hours and you can choose to take a day bus or a night bus. Top tip: pack a warm sweater – they love to crank the air conditioning on these buses!

  • From David: depart from the city bus terminal to Almirante, with a journey time of 3.5 hours. Leave the bus in Almirante or Chirique Grande and take a taxi to the water taxi terminal.

  • From Costa Rica: take a bus from San Jose and Limon (departs every 2 hours) to Sixaola, which is the border town to Panama. Pay your Costa Rica departure tax, get your exit passport stamp, walk across the bridge over the Sixaola River, and head to the Panama immigration window to get your entry stamp. From there, you need to travel to Almirante and you can take either a taxi ($30), a shared mini-bus (around $10), or a bus ($2).

Alternatively, you can take a shuttle from San Jose to Bocas, the most popular company is Caribe Shuttle. You get picked up in San Jose at 5.30 am, for the 10-hour journey ($80), which includes a shuttle to the border, a stop for lunch in Puerto Viejo, help crossing the border, a second shuttle once in Panama to take you to Almirante, and then the water taxi to Bocas. If you prefer to break up the journey, there are two shuttles per day - morning and afternoon, from Puerto Viejo to Bocas.


Water taxis depart the port of Almirante every 30 minutes to Isla Colon, from around 6:00 am to 6:30 pm. The journey takes 30 minutes and costs $6 for a one-way journey. The journey offers a glimpse into the local way of life and treats you to breathtaking views of the Caribbean Sea.


There is also a further water taxi service from Chiriqui Grande by PanaBocas for $10 and they offer a bus, taxi, and boat service from David for $20, or Boquete for $30.

By Land

For those who prefer flexibility and autonomy in their travel, driving to Bocas del Toro is an option. The journey from Panama City to Almirante takes approximately 7-8 hours by car. Renting a vehicle provides the freedom to explore various attractions en route and enjoy the scenic landscapes along the Pan-American Highway.


You can then take the car on the ferry to Isla Colon. The journey takes roughly 2 hours, and the cost depends on the size of your car, starting from $25 each way. Two ferries are leaving Almirante per day, check the timetable here.


Alternatively, you can park your car in Almirante/Chiriqui Grande and take the quicker water taxi instead. Once you reach the islands, you’re more likely to want to explore different islands by water taxi, than need to have a car.


Driving from Bocas Town, take the paved road north towards Playa Drago. After about 30 minutes (and about a kilometer before Drago), when you reach the north shore, take the unpaved road to the right. Follow that bumpy road for along the shore and through the jungle for 4 kilometers (about 15 minutes). You will know you are close when pass a group of small wooden homes in a clearing to your right. Shortly after that, you will reach the Bird Island property and gate on your left.

For more help, contact us directly via Whatsapp at +507 6487 9999/

From Bocas Town

From Bocas Town, there are two ways to reach Bird Island -- by taxi or public bus and shuttle:

Information about the taxi:

  • 35 USD per trip (fits up to 4 people in a car)

  • The taxi driver Rolando & his team speak Spanish and broken English

  • Please get in touch with Roland via WhatsApp to order the taxi: +507-68871977

  • Please only use Roland and his team as they know the way to Bird Island

  • Pick-up spots where Roland can pick you up: Airport or Restaurant & Cafe La Buga


Information about the Beach Shuttle:

  • You can take the local minibus from Bocas Town to Playa Drago. It leaves the park every hour and costs about $2.50

  • Our shuttle service goes 3 times a day

  • From Playa Drago to the hotel we pick up at 9 am, 1.30 pm, and 4.30 pm

  • From the hotel to Playa Drago we leave at: 9.30 am, 2 pm, and 5 pm

  • Please contact us via Whatsapp (+507 6487 9999) before your arrival if you wish to reserve a shuttle spot.

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