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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
22 km
30 min
$ 30.-

Public transport

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.

Discover and book tickets, activities and tours:



Panama City Day Tour

Spend the day in Panama City, exploring the best of the city: from Panama Canal to the open-air museum in Punta Culebra, and the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Casco Viejo.


From Panama City: Rainforest Zipline Adventure

Combine adventure with nature on this zipline activity in the rainforest outside Panama City.


From Panama City: Catamaran Cruise to Taboga Island

Ride a maxi catamaran to Taboga Island and relax on board with music and a cool drink. Enjoy the sea, sunbathe on a beach, and experience a typical Panamanian fishing village.



Panama City: Half Day City and Panama Canal Tour

Connect with the beautiful and modern Panama City on this shared or private city tour. Stroll the narrow streets of the Old Town and watch ships sail through the Panama Canal.


Panama City: 4-Day Island Hopping San Blas Adventure

Explore San Blas on a 4-days island hopping adventure. Visit more than 6 islands, go hiking in San Blas jungle, enjoy a Money Heist tour in Pelicano island, and snorkel in crystal-clear waters.


From Panama City: Panama Canal and Monkey Island Tour

Learn more about the impressive Panama Canal on an exciting tour from Panama City. See the canal in action at Miraflores Locks and explore Gatun Lake by boat.

Tours and transport

Tour & transport

Chagres National Park Hike and Embera Village Tour

Visit an Embera indigenous village located in the jungle an hour from Panama City. Enjoy a ride on the Chagres River, stop at a waterfall and more.

Tour & transport

From Panama City: Monkey Island and Sloth Sanctuary Tour

Escape to Soberania National Park and visit Monkey Island. Take a boat trip through the Panama Canal to visit the Sloth Sanctuary and the Butterfly House. Learn about the conservation efforts taken to protect these species.

Tour & transport

6-Hour Panama Canal Ship Cruise

Sail a section of the massive Panama Canal on board a cruise ship. Travel through the Cut on the way to the Pedro Miguel Locks and on to the Pacific Ocean. Admire the extraordinary feat of engineering up close and see the new Centennial Bridge.


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