BOCAS: BEACH, SUN, SEA...ECOTOURISM & ADVENTURES
At first, Bocas del Toro was just a sun and beach kind of destination, but it has evolved until becoming an internationally renowned ecotouristic spot, because of its biological diversity, the existence of the Bastimentos Island Marine National Park and the virgin and semi-virgin state of lots of areas. Among the ecotouristic activities you can enjoy in Bocas are watching dolphins in their natural habitat, snorkeling in coral reefs, diving, walking through forest trails to watch exuberant flora and fauna, visit mangroves bursting with life, watch multitude of local and migrating birds.
If you want ecological adventures, you can also arrange private tours, out of the archipelago to areas like the San San Pond Sac wetlands or Escudo de Veraguas island. If you are interested in the science side of it all and you happen to be in Bocas on a Thursday or Friday, the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute’s (STRI) station is a must. It can be preceded by a visit to the Finca Los Monos Botanical Tropical Garden, which specializes in tropical flora with an exhaustive collection of palm trees and heliconias.
As it’s expected, being a Caribbean archipelago, there are lots of varied beaches, from the extensive golden sands in Bastimentos island, the pools formed by the reefs in Paunch, the beautiful Zapatillas Cay beach, the tranquil and most visited one in Boca del Drago, the surprising Star Beach, where starfishes are all over and the peaceful waters of Carenero island. There are beaches for all, expert swimmers and non swimmers alike and can be enjoyed by adults and small children with absolute safety. Crystalline and clean water are the distinctive seal of the area.
Bocas del Toro is also a very popular spot for surfers from all over the world, having its peak season from December through March, when there are the biggest and best waves in Bluff and other specific spots. Fishing is also favored and you can contact any of the local boaters to take you on a fishing tour to the best areas where you can practice several types of fishing and, afterwards, take your catch to one of the local restaurants that, willingly, will cook it for you.
If you are a fitness buff, you can walk or ride a bicycle all over town, as the locals do. There are several places that rent bicycles for the hour or the day. If you are not physically fit, don’t want to sweat or just want to go farther in your exploring, then you can rent scooters (motorcycles) or ATVs and cross the island up to Boca del Drago or follow the coastline to Paunch or Bluff to enjoy unique beaches and scenery. If you prefer, you can also hire a City Tour by car, that can then be followed by a visit to the caves in La Gruta, the beach at Boca del Drago or any of beaches in the eastern side of the island.
There’s no excuse, if you’re young, old, fit or a couch potato, you can enjoy Bocas del Toro in all it natural dimension, so come visit us!