This is One of the Best Beaches in Panama -
and has one day to be potentially chic


By Else Forbes

Whenever Punta Chame comes up in conversation you rarely hear the same story twice. One version of the story is: " it is too long a drive once you exit from the Pan American highway". Another version is "they have improved the road greatly, it is a beautiful drive and worth the extra 20 to 30 minutes".

Still others report that the sand is a mixture of black and white, but the pictures clearly show it is close to sugar white, perhaps it changes seasonly or with memory. Depending on your needs and desires, you might say there are no real places to buy food, restaurants or really any places to stay. In reality, it actually does have lots of rentals, for overnights or longer term stays and very friendly eateries. As yet, it does not have the conveniences of big grocery stores or tourist attractions stuffed with souvenirs, which actually adds to its appeal. The bay side of Punta Chame is famous for its wind-surfing, which is spectacular if that is your sport, and equally fantastic to watch.

beach hut

The Pan American highway takes you west along the coast line of the Pacific from Panama City. Punta Chame is one of the first exits that takes you to a large expanse of wide, nearly unspoiled beaches.
As you exit off the highway, the first part of the journey is flat with farmland and wide open space. The road continues on becoming more hilly, serene and lush with tropical vegetation. A little further on, you start to descend down towards the beach passing coconut palms, lagoons on both sides of the road, and then you hit the mangroves. Once you pass a huge vacant building on the right that was a shrimp farm, you realize you have just about arrived. There have been several large housing projects started, but never completed, making you wonder if this is all there is. The road is not fully repaved at this point, so your speed will naturally decline, but the vistas of the Pacific Ocean begin to increase. This in part adds a fare amount of time to you journey, but once there it is gorgeous.

Driving up and down side streets you will stumble on several orchid farms, and a mixture of new and old housing. Many of the properties are beachfront, some are modest and simple, others are absolutely gorgeous and well maintained. This area is destined to be over time, not the little hide away, but potentially a very desirable piece of paradise. Q

beach pelicans





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