Frequently Asked Questions
How do I get there?
Getting to the Portobelo National Park is very easy and depending on the activity, we will either meet you at Portobelo, Puerto Lindo or Jose Del Mar (formerly Jose Pobre). Please email us if you have any questions.
From Panama City take the Corredor Norte, direction Colon. Please make sure you check with your rental company that your car has a PANAPASS. Keep following directions for Colon until you see a sign for Sabanitas and turn off here. Follow this road until you see a Mc Donalds on your left and shortly after a Supermarket Rey on your right. At Rey turn right and continue for 3km. Take the sharp right just after the light yellow church. Continue 33km along this road following signs for Portobelo.
Puerto Lindo is about 25km further on down the same road from Portobelo. After Portobelo, follow the signs for Isla Grande and Puerto Lindo.
Jose Del Mar:
Around 23km after Portobelo and just before you reach Puerto Lindo, you will see a dirt road on the left signposted for Cacique. Oppsite this turn you will see a shop called Paradise Yacht Supply. Head down the road for a few hundred meters and keep right at the intersection. Continue on for about 6km until you come to Cacique. At the intersection with the white cross, take the left. Continue on this road until you come to the sea! We will be there to meet you.
From Albrook bus station, take the number 23 to Colon – this should cost around $3.80 and take around an hour. At Colon, change for Portobelo or Costa Arriba – La Gaira if you want to go to Puerto Lindo. There is only 1 bus a day that will go to Jose del Mar and it normally leaves Colon at 11.30. Keep your eyes out for the signs or ask your bus driver to let you know when you have arrived.
Where can I get cash from?
Portobelo has 1 cash machine, but it is often out of service or out of cash! The best idea is to get cash in Panama City or stop at Sabanitas on your way through. Sabanitas has several ATMs – inside the Rey and Super 99 supermarkets, outside the Banco General and next to the bakery (Rio de Oro).
Where can I buy groceries and other things?
The largest amount of choice is definitely in Sabanitas where there are 2 large supermarkets (Super 99 and the Rey) plus a small local market for fresh veggies, some seafood and some meat which is tucked behind the super 99. There is also a bakery in Sabanitas and a couple of pharmacies where you can pick up prescription drugs and more specialised medical supplies. You will also find several hardware shops and car mechanics in Sabanitas.
As you head further down the coast, the shops get smaller and the choice reduces, although it is still possible to get all your basic groceries in Portobelo which has several large-ish tiendas that stock some veggies, meat and dry goods. Puerto Lindo has 3 small tiendas which usually have some meat products and dry goods and we have a veggie truck that passes 2-3 times a week. Jose del Mar has 1 small tienda which is good for basic snacks and cold drinks.
Where is the nearest medical center?
Each little village has a small medical center which is run by a local nurse who has basic first aid training. Portobelo has a larger medical center on the road up by Captain Jack’s Hostel. The nearest proper hospital is in Colon. Most of the little tiendas will sell BASIC first aid supplies like painkillers and band aids. The number for emergency support (ambulance, police and fire service in the larger cities is 911)