Welcome to Gamboa

Top experiences in Gamboa

Travel guides

Starting at $32.49

Image for

Gamboa activities

$135 Tours & Sightseeing

Ocean to Ocean Panama Canal and Jungle Tour

To start this tour, you will follow the Panama Canal north to the town of Gamboa, where the Chagres River meets the canal. You will begin the wildlife viewing from a boat on the waters of the canal and Gatun Lake. You will ride along the waters of the Panama Canal right next to the ships passing through as well as have an up close view of the the abundant wildlife on its shores.  You will visit the famous Monkey Islands where you will see capuchins, howlers, and tamarins. Once you finish with the canal and lake boat ride (around 90 minutes), you will head 45 minutes north to the Caribbean side of Panama. You will visit the Agua Clara Visitor Center to see the new expansion locks working up close.  Located on the west side of the brand new Agua Clara Locks, the Agua Clara Visitor Center allows you to observe transiting vessels from a scenic lookout point and learn first hand about the various operations of the Panama Canal, the history of its construction, its participation in the world markets, and the importance of its watershed. An observational deck lets you watch the ships pass through the Agua Clara Locks on their way to the Pacific or Atlantic oceans. The next stop will be a visit to San Lorenzo National Park where you will visit a remote rainforest full of flora and fauna, followed by a freshly made picnic lunch and a tour Fort San Lorenzo. A 400 year old Spanish fort on a scenic cliff overlooking the Caribbean, here you will recount the many attacks by pirates and privateers that happened at one of the most historically important places in Panama.  The Fort of San Lorenzo, located on an 80 foot (25m) cliff overlooking the Caribbean Sea at the estuary of the Chagres River, was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1980 along with the fortifications of the city of Portobelo. It was part of the defensive system for the transatlantic trade of the Spanish Crown, and is a fine example of military architecture of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. The Fort of San Lorenzo is one of the oldest fortresses in Spanish America. Here you will recount the many attacks by pirates and privateers that happened at one of the most historically important places in Panama.  Once you finish the tour of the fort, you will return to Panama City for hotel drop off.

$145 Cruises, Sailing & Water Tours

Panama Canal Partial Transit Sightseeing Cruise

You'll be picked up from your hotel at approximately 8am and head towards the La Playita pier. Along the way, you'll drive through both the old and modern areas of Panama City along the Amador Causeway, arriving at the pier to board the vessel at 9:30am.Enjoy an approximate 60-minute scenic sightseeing cruise along the Panama Canal until reaching the famous Miraflores Locks. Depending on the number of boats present on your date of travel, you'll most likely have to wait a short while before cruising inside the locks. The wait is absolutely worth it, so relax and enjoy the scenery until it’s your turn!When going through the Miraflores Locks, your ship is raised up to 54 feet (16 meters) in a two-step process. This activity is achieved by sending water from Pedro Miguel's lake to fill the chambers where the ship is locked. Once the process is finished, you'll continue cruising to the Pedro Miguel Locks before arriving at the Gamboa pier, where you'll jump back into the coach for the return transfer to your Panama City hotel.

$70 Cruises, Sailing & Water Tours

Panama Canal and Gatun Lake Jungle Eco Cruise

To start this tour, you will be picked up in central Panama City and taken halfway up the Panama Canal to the town of Gamboa, where the Chagres River meets the canal.  A professional bilingual guide and boat captain will be waiting for you in a spacious covered boat.  During your 90-minute boat cruise you will ride along the waters of the Panama Canal right next to the ships passing through on their way to the Atlantic or Pacific Oceans.  The destination is Gatun Lake, where you will cruise around islands created during the canal construction and see the abundant wildlife on their shores.  You will visit the famous Monkey Islands where we can see capuchins, howlers, and tamarins in their natural habitat.  The islands are situated in a world renowned tropical birding area, and along the shores you might catch glimpses of crocodiles, capybara, coati, agouti, iguanas, and much more.  The tour will finish with transportation to central Panama City.

$110 Cruises, Sailing & Water Tours

Panama Canal Eco-Cruise and Rainforest Discovery Center

To start this tour, you will follow the Panama Canal north to the town of Gamboa, where the Chagres River meets the canal.  You will ride along the waters of the Panama Canal right next to the ships passing through on their way to the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans.  Your destination is Gatun Lake, where you will cruise around islands created during the canal construction and see the abundant wildlife on their shores.  You will visit the famous Monkey Islands where you can see capuchins, howlers, and tamarins up close in their natural habitat.  Once you finish with your canal and lake boat ride (around 90 minutes), you will head to the famous Pipeline Road in Soberania National Park.  One of the premiere birding spots in the world, the Pipeline Road will give you an opportunity to travel through a mature rain forest that is full of an incredible mix of wildlife.  A bird count here organized by the Audubon Society set a record when 385 species were observed in 24 hours.  Here you will visit the Rainforest Discovery Center, an environmental education project administered by the Fundación Avifauna.  You will visit the canopy of the rainforest on a 100 ft. (32 m) observation tower and see an amazing abundance of birds and animals from the different viewing levels.  A walk along the trails on the rainforest floor will take you to a panoramic view of the lake where you can see different species of water fowl and aquatic animals. You will surround yourself with hundreds of hummingbirds at the hummingbird feeders where you will enjoy a freshly made picnic lunch.  Once you finish up at the Rainforest Discovery Center we will return to Panama City for hotel drop off.

$188.99 Cruises, Sailing & Water Tours

Gatun Lake Cruise: Monkey Island, Panama Canal, Island Picnic

You'll be picked up at your Panama City hotel and driven to Gamboa, where you'll meet your naturalist guide. First, you'll travel via a high-speed motorboat along the Panama Canal, navigating through ancient routes that once crossed the isthmus long before the creation of the lakes. You may come close to some of the large ships that transit the canal daily. After turning the engine off, you'll slowly cruise along the forested banks of Gatun Lake and head towards Monkey Island. A protected area and your first stop on the tour, Monkey Island boasts an incredible amount of wildlife. Stay on the lookout for capuchin monkeys, three-toed sloths, howler monkeys and various kinds of toucans.You'll then jump back on the boat and head to an even more remote location, Sounds of Silence Island. Here, you'll have plenty of time to relax and enjoy a picnic. You may also explore on your own while kayaking, swimming and fishing. If you prefer, just relax on the island and sip a cool drink while taking in the beauty of the area before returning to your Panama City hotel.

$180 Cruises, Sailing & Water Tours

Panama Canal Partial Transit Boat Tour

Details and Example: Partial Transit Boat Tour When the tour boat journey begins at the north we depart from Gamboa which is located at the northern entrance to the Corte Culebra. The Corte Culebra section of the Canal is known by this name because of the similarity of its curves with those of a snake (Corte=Cut. Culebra=Snake). This is also the point in the Canal where the Chagres River flows into the Canal. This is actually one of the most interesting sections of the canal as it was cut through the solid rock formation which constitutes the Continental Divide, giving this section of the canal grand historic and geographic importance. The giant Chagres River feeds fresh water to maintain the Canal operation, our tour boat will traverse the entire 14 kilometers which comprise this unique section of the Canal on our way to the locks at Pedro Miguel, there, at Pedro Miguel, you will observe the entrance to the newly inaugurated third set of locks on the Canal through which the post-panamax mega-ships now pass. Before arriving at the Pedro Miguel locks at the southern end of the cut you will pass underneath the modern Centennial Bridge which crosses over the Canal. Once in the locks at Pedro Miguel our boat will descend 9 meters (30 feet) down to the level of Miraflores Lake which begins on the exit side of the locks. After crossing Miraflores lake we will arrive at The Miraflores locks where we will descend a total of 18 meters (60 feet) in two steps. Exiting the final set of locks at Miraflores we will be at sea level of the Pacific Ocean. You will have the opportunity to experience just how our boat descends while being enclosed within the confines of the locks as the trapped water is slowly released into the Pacific Ocean. To the point where we end up at the same level as the ocean-side waters.  At Miraflores you will also experience the feeling of being observed by dozens of curious onlookers as the watch our boat pass through the locks from the Visitor’s Center alongside. Leaving the locks at Miraflores we will continue sailing towards the Pacific Ocean. Along the way we will pass underneath the historic Las Americas Bridge, one of the longest in Latin America at 1.6 kilometers (1 mile) long. The Las Americas Bridge, along with the Centennial Bridge, are what effectively join North and Central America with south America. As we pass through the Pacific entrance to the Canal out into Panama Bay you will notice the formidable skyscrapers the fill the skyline over Panama City. Our tour boat will sail on the either the Flamenco Marina, La Playita or Balboa Yacht Club, wherever our tour began when we boarded the tour buses hours earlier, we always end at the very same point where we began the tour.  It is truly one the most impressive tours in the entire world.   

Gamboa in detail