The Gamboa Rainforest Resort is only a 30-minute drive from Panama City, but feels worlds away. A 5-star property located on the Panama Canal and Chargres River in the Soberania National Forest, it's a lavish setting perfect for an off-the-beaten-path romantic getaway. But with rooms starting at just $120/night, your tropical vacation doesn't have to break the bank.

The Setting

The Gamboa Rainforest Resort boast a few suites, but even the standard rooms feature a balcony with a view that's to die for. Just imagine listening to 400+ species of birds rocking you to sleep in that hammock. It's your own little slice of paradise.

Stay Busy

Part of the charm of the Gamboa Beach Resort is that it's isolated from the hustle and bustle of the city, but that doesn't mean it's boring. The resort offers several complimentary activities throughout the day to keep your vacation schedule as busy -- or as relaxed -- as you'd like. Start the morning with a guided nature walk through the rainforest to explore the stunning local flora and fauna. In the afternoon, visit with a sloth from the on-site wildlife rehabilitation center, Asociacion Panamericana Para La Conservacion, to learn how you can help with conservation efforts.

Every evening, the Gamboa Rainforest Resort offers nightly safari tours. Due to the somewhat oppressive heat in Panama, many animals are more active at night. On safari, you may be lucky enough to catch a glimpse of a capybara (a hamster relative), crocodile, Caiman alligator (yes, they have both), or grey fox.

Photo Credit: Brian Gratwicke

There are many other activities offered by the resort for an additional fee; from kayaking and boat tours to a visit to the Native Panamanian Indian village. Just check with the concierge for booking information.


If rainforest hiking isn't your scene, the sensory spa might be. Indulge in a 50 or 80 minute couples massage or aromatic bubble bath. When you're done with your rub down, soak up some rays by the enormous pool overlooking the rainforest. A lovely swim-up bar ensures you can enjoy the tropical breeze, beer in hand. Because that's what vacation is all about.