Did you know that there is a small town with white sandy beaches, crystal clear waters, a handful of fantastic restaurants where everyone drives around in golf carts? Did you know that town is less than 90 minutes from downtown Panama City or a 15 minute flight from Albrook airport?
That town is the island community of Contadora, and after recently spending four days out there, I can tell you that I have fallen in love.
Being in Contadora is like being in another country, another world. Stand out over a deep water pier and watch a 10lb Red Snapper swim a few feet below the surface or look out towards the horizon to catch a glimpse of whales and dolphins in some cases less than a few hundred yards off shore.
The first hotels were built in the 1960’s, most notably the Hotel Contadora which in its prime employed over 200 and featured white glove service and a celebrity A-listers the likes of John Wayne, Elizabeth Taylor, and the Shah of Iran. Wealthy Panamanian families have kept vacation homes on Contadora for decades, and the waters usually fill up with yachts over the weekends, with activity dying down during the week.
The Hotel Contadora has fallen on hard times, but several other hotels and small B&B’s have filled in its place to create more than a dozen offerings on places to stay.
People don’t go to Contadora to party, they go to Contadora to connect. To connect with family, to connect with nature, to re-connect with oneself and re-discover priorities, and to remember why they live in Panama in the first place.
If you are curious about how to get to Contadora, what to do in Contadora, or where to stay in Contadora, keep an eye on our blog. We’ve fallen in love, and we want to make sure that everyone who knows Panama knows Contadora.