This is the most populated island in the Bocas del Toro archipelago and the capital of the Province of Bocas del Toro. Most hotels, restaurants, bars, tour operators, and businesses are based in Bocas Town on Isla Colon, with the Bocas del Toro International Airport also located here – just outside of Bocas Town. Isla Colon is the starting point for visitors who wish to explore the other islands of Bocas del Toro.
Found on the southern tip of Isla Colon, Bocas Town is the capital and main commercial center of the Bocas del Toro Islands. Although Bocas Town is the living zone of the area, it is a comfortable size and easy to navigate. Most hotels, restaurants, bars and other businesses are between 1st, 2nd and 3rd streets. In the center of the town is the Simón Bolívar Park where food and crafts are sold. A taxi ride costs less than $1 to almost anywhere in the center, but the best mode of transportation is by bicycle. Walking through Bocas Town and exploring craft sales is a great outing. The Bri-Bri fair is an excellent option for Panamanian crafts and Bocatoreñas. Guna fairs are at the end of the main street (3rd street) in front of Hotel Las Brisas – here the artisans sell molas (colorful fabrics), local handicrafts and handmade jewelry. There are many bars and quality restaurants in Bocas Town, serving a wonderful variety of food options. Restaurants and bars are open on the water with happy hour from evening to nightfall. In the evenings, Bocas Town is active with reggae bars, martini bars and even sushi bars, often offering deep-house music by live DJs, and epic full moon parties once a month.
Isla Colon has some of the most beautiful beaches of the Bocas del Toro archipelago. The quieter beaches for swimming are found in: Estrella Beach, Sandfly Beach and Big Creek Beach.
This is one of the most beautiful beaches in Bocas, but you have to be careful if you want to swim – the waves tend to be very strong, and the rip tides can be dangerous. It is better to swim when the water has almost no waves.
Playa Estrella, Isla Colon
You can get to Bocas del Drago and Playa Estrella for $5 on the bus that leaves in front of Simón Bolívar Park in Bocas Town starting at 10 am. Bocas del Drago is also a good option for snorkeling, you can also walk to Playa Estrella or take a boat to Isla Pájaro. Playa Estrella is among the most popular and specular beaches and is the only beach apart from the Zapatillas Cays where it is not dangerous to bathe when there are waves.
Isla Pájaro, Isla Colon
Isla Pájaro is a small rocky island at the northern end of Isla Colon. On Isla Pájaro you will find terns, frigates and seagulls, while small birds fly among the treetops. It is the only place in Panama where you can see the Rabijunco Piquirojo bird, famous for the long feathers of its tail dancing in the wind behind them when they glide around the island.