Panama Weather and When to Go

A tropical climate

Panama is a tropical country which means you can expect, sun, high temperature, rainfall and high humidity.  The average year-round temperatures are a balmy (24°C-29°C), varying only with altitude. The lowest temperature can be experience in the Chiriquí Highlands and El Valle or Altos del Maria, for example, 18°C, and these are the only areas in Panama where you will likely feel cold.

Humidity is always high in Panama, and rainfall varies noticeably between the Pacific and Caribbean sides of the country, with some areas in the Caribbean receiving almost twice the yearly rainfall of Panama City. Based on our experience there is not a best time to visit Panama. Travellers are recommended to travel during the summer dry season from mid-December to mid-April which is also the high season, no-rain not guaranteed! Some hotels and resorts charge higher rates during this period and the sea can be rough which is a disadvantage as well for boat transportation, snorkelling activities, etc.  During the low season, the sea is very calm between September and October and you can enjoy as well very sunny days. May to August are characterized by sudden, heavy thunderstorms in the afternoon that are short in duration, and can happen every few days. Often, the skies are sunny in the morning or afternoon.

In short:

High Season (mid-Dec–mid-April)

  • Corresponds with the dry season.
  • Little rain in Panama City and elsewhere south of the Continental Divide.
  • Includes November festivals, Christmas and New Years plus Easter holidays.
  • Hotel rates may be up to double that of normal rates.
  • Resorts, festival towns and beaches are crowded with Panamanian vacationers.
  • Windy and little breeze at night
  • Sea can be rough

Low Season (mid-April–early Dec)

  • Corresponds with “rainy season” in the country
  • Rain is sporadic, many destinations can still be enjoyed.
  • Lodging rates and resorts are better priced.
  • Less crowded and you will have more chance to find a virgin beach
  • Greener and more visible wildlife

For up-to-date information on weather in Panama, go to the Panama-City live radar or  Local forecast

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