Whether you’re heading along the paved road to Boca del Drago or taking a dirt track to Playa Bluff, a bike can seriously increase your mobility. Note that the bike ride to Boca del Drago from Boca town is taxing; if you’re unsure of your fitness level, head for Punta Bluff instead. Bikes are available from some hostels as well as from Ixa’s Bike World and Bocas Bicis in Boca town. Flying Pirates rents out ATVs/quad bikes.
While birdwatching on the islands isn’t as good as on the mainland, it can still be rewarding. Particularly rare birds, or at least those not well known to Panama, have been recorded on the islands in recent years, including the red-fronted parrotlet, the chestnut-colored woodpecker, the purple martin and the black-cowled oriole.
The best option for aspiring anglers on a budget is to go surf casting with the local water-taxi drivers. The hand lines can be a bit tricky at first, but you’ll get the hang of it. It’s best to go early in the morning.
If you’re looking to seriously get off the beaten path, there is a network of undeveloped hiking trails that fans out across Isla Colón. One of the more popular hikes starts at the end of the coastal road in Mimbi Timbi to the northeast and carries on west along the coast to Boca del Drago. You will need about six hours of daylight to complete the hike, and you must carry in all your water. The trail winds past caves, caverns and plenty of vine-entangled jungle. A bike will help speed things up a bit, though you’ll be carrying it part of the way, especially if it’s been raining recently.
Sea kayaking is a great way to travel between islands. You will need to be wary of boat traffic, though, and the occasional swell. Some dive shops and hostels rent kayaks.