Transportation to and from Panama City Tocumen Airport
What is the distance from Panama City Tocumen Airport to the centre of Panama City?
The distance from the airport to the centre of Panama City (Iglesia del Carmen in Bellavista) is 22 kilometres / 13.7 miles, the journey time is 30 minutes on average. Panama City is a sprawling city, the Bella Vista district known for the Obarrio and El Cangrejo neighbourhoods is in the middle of the city. Other well-known places to keep in mind are Casco Viejo (historic centre), Panamá Viejo (Old Town), Albrook (bus station and Albrook Mall), Balboa (the port) and Punta Paitilla. Most hotels in Panama City are located in Bella Vista and Casco Viejo.
From PTY Airport to Panama City City centre by Taxi
Bus to Panama City
It is possible to travel by public transport from the airport to the city, for this you have two options. The first option is bus line E489, which is the only bus service that leaves from the terminal. Bus line E489 (Traslados / Shuttle Bus) leaves in front of Terminal 1 (zona 6) and runs to bus station ZP Metro Pedregal next to metro station Pedregal – Las Acacias. Travel time is 20 minutes, the bus runs every 15 to 30 minutes in both directions. Bus line E489 is available from Monday to Sunday between 05:00 hours and midnight. The price is only 0.25 PAB / USD per person, but you must be in possession of a Tarjeta Metro, MetroBus or RapiPass worth 2.00 PAB / USD. From Pedregal you can travel further by metro to the city centre, but you still have to change at San Miguelito metro station. A single journey by metro costs 0.35 PAB / USD. The journey time from Pedregal – Las Acacias to Estación Iglesia del Carmen in the heart of the city is 40 minutes including transfers. Thus, in total you are on the road for about one hour.
Alternatively, you can travel directly to the city by bus, therefore you must first walk to the main road (Calle Aeopuerto / Avenida Domingo Diaz). From Terminal 1 you can reach bus stop Aeropuerto-I via a covered walkway, which takes 5 to 10 minutes. If you want to travel in the direction of the city, you have to wait at the bus stop across the road. There are many buses leaving to the city from here. Buses run through the busy streets of Tumba Muerto, Transístmica and Vía España to the city centre and Albrook bus station. Bus stops with a convenient location in Panama City are Cervecería Nacional in El Cangrejo and Concordia Plaza Shopping Center on Vía España. A bus ticket costs 0.25 PAB / USD if you use a Tarjeta Metro, MetroBus or RapiPass. If you don’t have a card for public transport, you must ask someone else at the bus stop to pay for you, you can pay him or her in cash. Please consult website MiBus (Rutas Complementarias) for more information.
Top 5 attractions in Panama City and surroundings
1. Panama Canal and Miraflores Visitor Center, ticket price is 20 PAB / USD
2. Panamá Viejo (ancient ruins) and Casco Viejo
3. San Blas Islands, book a day trip!
4. Isla Taboga, book a day trip with a catamaran!
5. Embera Indian Village Tour
Public transport Panama City
In Panama City you can travel by taxi and public transport, i.e. metros and buses. The prices are low, for a taxi ride you usually pay no more than a few dollars. Public transport is the cheapest option. A one-way ticket costs 0.35 PAB / USD for the metro and 0.25 PAB / USD for the bus. The Metro de Panamá network consists of two metro lines, Line 1 (14 stations) between San Isidro and Albrook and Line 2 (16 stations) between Nuevo Tocumen and San Miguelito. The metro in Panama is mainly used by locals, not so much by tourists. Estación 5 de Mayo is closest to Casco Viejo, it’s a 15 minute walk from here. In order to use the metro and/or bus you must be in possession of a public transport card, a Tarjeta Metro, MetroBus or RapiPass costs 2.00 PAB / USD and is available on the metro stations and Albrook Bus Terminal. You must top up the card with money. It’s possible to share your card, if you do not have a card yourself, you can ask a fellow passenger to pay for you. Bus rides in Panama City are operated by MetroBus and MiBus, in addition you can travel by buses (diablo rojo / chicken bus) that are privately owned and for which you also pay 0.25 PAB / USD.
Public transportation to Miraflores Locks
The Panama Canal (Miraflores Locks) is the most visited landmark in the country, accessible by taxi and bus. There is a direct bus service from Albrook Bus Terminal to Miraflores Locks, namely bus line C810 operated by MiBus. The bus departs from platform Bahia 4 at Albrook Bus Terminal and takes you in 20 minutes to the bus stop outside the visitor centre entrance. Albrook Bus Terminal is easily accessible from all parts of the city by bus and metro line 1. A one-way trip by bus costs 0.25 PAB / USD, but you can only pay with a card for public transportation.
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