With relentlessly wet weather and a series of national holidays that close things down, November isn't a favorite month for travelers to visit Panama. However, if you can only visit the tropical Central American country during this month, you can still have a great time. Here's what to know about traveling to Panama in November.

Weather

Panama's rainy season goes out with a (big wet) bang in November. The rain that covers most of Panama from late April intensifies in late October and November, before easing in December. As a tropical country that's quite near the equator, the annual average temperature in Panama is 86°F (30°C) and it only fluctuates slightly throughout the year. While the rainy season can be a little cooler than the dry season, the humidity is high, which can be uncomfortable. The higher-altitude highlands are always a bit cooler than coastal areas.

Crowds & Costs

On the one hand, international travelers generally stay away from Panama in November, as neither beach resorts nor jungle national parks are at their best, but you might get a cheap flight to Panama in November. On the other hand, a series of public holidays throughout the month (Panama has several independence days, not just one!) shut businesses around the country, locals take time off, and hotels can become packed with vacationing Panamanians.  

Where to Go

If you must travel to Panama in November, sticking around Panama City is a good option. There's a lot to see and do in the capital, including indoor attractions when the weather is at its worst. With all the public holidays in November, moving around the country can be frustrating, so staying put in one place may be the best use of limited time. Tour the visitor's center at the Miraflores Locks of the Panama Canal, shelter from the rain at the Frank Gehry-designed Biomuseo, and wander the streets of Casco Viejo, the beautiful old part of town. Just be mindful of when the public holidays fall so you can time your museum visits right.

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What to Do

Aside from general city sightseeing, visitors can enjoy some outdoor adventure sports in November. Experienced surfers enjoy the big swells off both coasts throughout the rainy season. White-water rafting is at its best with the swollen rivers. Scuba diving can be done throughout the rainy season, too. If you stick around in a beach town long enough, you might be able to catch some drier weather in December.

Events in November

Independence Day/Separation Day & Flag Day. On 3rd and 4th November respectively, these are the biggest of the independence-related national holidays in Panama in November. Watch parades, fireworks displays, and other entertainment in Panama City, David, and other cities. November 3rd celebrates when Panama declared separation and complete independence from Greater Colombia in 1903.

Colon Day. Falling on 5th November, Colon Day marks the day in 1903 when the people of the city of Colon averted the Colombian Army from marching to Panama City. This isn't Panama's Columbus Day (despite Colon meaning Columbus in Spanish) as that's held in October.

Los Santos Uprising Day. This national holiday is observed in November 10th and commemorates the start of Panama's struggle for independence from Spain, which started in the town of Los Santos.

Independence Day. This second Independence Day is held on November 28th. It marks the day that Panama achieved independence from Spain in 1821.

Traveling to Panama in November? Check out these great itineraries

Best of Panama City - 7 Days. Melding colonial history and bold modernity, the cosmopolitan capital of Panama is a thriving hub in Central America. 

The Wonders of Panama - 7 Days. Panama is a beautiful country brimming with history and diversity, and this week-long itinerary offers an exciting sampling of its many charms.

More Helpful Information

Panama in October
Panama in December