Granito de Oro is located in the Pacific Ocean, south of the province of Veraguas. The island is within the 270,125-hectare area of Coiba National Park that protects marine, coastal, and island ecosystems and was declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 2005. Within this park are the insular areas (153,582 hectares) of Coiba Island, Ranchería (Coibita) Jicarón, Jicarita, Afuerita, Canal de Afuera, Uvas, Contreras, and Brincanco, as well as marine areas (216,543 hectares), making it one of the largest marine parks in the world.
How to arrive
To reach Coiba National Park island and visit the Granito de Oro islet, you must first travel to Port Mutis. On the boat ride over to the island you will go on an impressive tour of the beautiful Gulf of Montijo Wetland, observing its coastal and marine flora and fauna around the Gulf islands of Leones, Cébaco, and Gobernadora.
It can also be reached by travelling to Hicaco, Santa Catalina, and Playa Arrimadero in Madre Vieja, although on these routes you will not be able to observe the beauty of the Gulf of Montijo.
- Plane: A flight from Panama City to the city of Santiago takes approximately 20 minutes.
- Car: It is a 5 hour drive (245 kilometers). Once in Santiago, take the highway to either Puerto Mutis (25 km) or Santa Catalina to board a boat and sail to the island.
What to bring
- Water bottle
- Insect repellent
- Snorkeling gear
- Hiking in Coiba National Park
- Visit to the former penal colony
- Soak in the hot springs
- Whale watching (June to October)
- Dolphin watching (year-round)