I’ve been where you are… you’ve scrimped and saved your pennies all year… you’ve traded fun nights out on the town for delivery pizza… you’ve skipped weekend getaways to watch your favorite football team as your focus was on your own prize… and now you’ve got your very own vacation stash of cash and you’re eager to put it to good use!

So now, what’s it going to be? The big city 500 miles away from wherever you are that have the same 10 fast food restaurants that are five minutes away from your house? The Chevy Chase tour of the grand canyon? The D.C. gauntlet to go walk through the concrete jungle of all of the man-made government buildings? Well how about a real jungle? How about a real adventure? When you decide to visit Panama you will experience an exotic destination full of mystique and adventure begging you to fall in love with it as I have.

Panama sits at the top of countries to visit in Central America. Panama is called Bridge of The World, Heart of The Universe not only for the Panama Canal but also for the variety of amenities and places to discover as you experience the old world as it meets the new. Let me give you 4 reasons to visit Panama right now:

Reasons to Visit Panama include beautiful beaches either in the Pacific or the Atlantic - PanamaKeys

Panama has beautiful beaches in the Pacific or the Atlantic

1. Numerous Beaches

Panama is a tropical paradise! There’s no better place to experience the beach than in the tropics. The salty breeze of the arid Panama coastlines make most any beach you choose to visit here enjoyable and relaxing. Tranquilo is one of the favorite expressions of the Panamanian people, and believe you me, they live it! Imagine riding a horse down from the Las Olas beach in La Barqueta 8 kilometers to the river and never seeing another soul! Even better, white, sandy beaches are usually only an hour away, whether from the city or the country side. Panama is such a narrow country that no matter where you are, you can visit the Pacific or the Atlantic in no time… even in the same day! Imagine the hardest choice of your day being which ocean to visit!

2. The Panama Canal

Many people call the Panama Canal the 8th Wonder of the World. The one must-see spot to visit is the Panama Canal Expansion Observation Center, located in the province of Colon, where you can watch the work from the latest canal expansion finished in 2016. You can also visit the Miraflores Lock Visitor Center to observe small boats and enormous ships go through the canal. But if you are the hands-on type visitor, then take a ride in a vessel or a cruise ship to experience the canal live. Oh, and don’t forget to stop by the museum and watch the 3D movie about the history of the Canal at the Visitor Center Or, if fishing is on your agenda, spend a day chasing down the peacock bass found in the gorgeous blue waters of Lake Gatun!

Dolphin Watching at Bocas is another reason to visit Panama! - PanamaKeys

Dolphin Watching at Bocas del Toro

3. Exotic Islands

Panama is home to pristine tropical islands. Many a soul has moved to Panama because of their stunning beauty. Top choices include Bocas del Toro, Isla Grande, San Blas, Boca Brava, or Taboga. San Blas is famous for the Guna Yala indigenous community, where you can witness the production of the traditional mola textiles. Bocas del Toro is famous for the island of the star fish, and for snorkeling activities in the island’s crystalline waters.

4. Top Quality Coffee in the Highlands

Boquete and Volcan, gorgeous regions located in the Chiriqui highlands, have the best weather in Panama, where temperatures resemble those of spring in North America. On top of that, the area is known for producing not only the best coffee in Panama but also for the many coffee and barista competitions. Finca Lerida and Janson Farms are two of the many Geisha coffee producers, selling in Asian countries for hundreds of dollars per pound.

Whether your vacation includes beaches, enjoying the city, having a great cup of coffee, or simply relaxing in an island, Panama has what you need to have the time of your life. Still not convinced? Join the conversation in social media or leave a comment below.

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