Colón Free Zone

The Colón Free Zone was established as an institution run autonomously from the state on June 17, 1948, under Law 18. It is located at the entrance to the Panama Canal on the Caribbean coast, in the city of Colón, province of Colón. With an area of 400 hectares, it is considered the second largest free trade zone in the world and the biggest in the Western Hemisphere. As a Global Logistics Center it houses over 2,500 established companies, receives 250,000 visitors annually, and generates over $11,000 billion a year in commercial transactions of imports, exports, and re- exports.

It has become an international port hub for its unequalled geographical position and access to the most important ports on both the Caribbean and Pacific coasts of the isthmus, including Manzanillo International Terminal, Colon Ports Terminal, Colon Container Terminal, and the Panama Ports Company. This free trade zone is also connected to the following transport services: Enrique A. Jimenéz International Airport at France Field, Panama Railroad Station, Panama-Colón Highway, cruise ship terminals, and the central bus terminal.


The Colón Free Zone is located in the city of Colón, a 55 minute drive on the highway from Panama City. It is the Atlantic port of entry for ships transiting the Panama Canal.

How to arrive

  • Car: From Panama City, take the Panama-Colón Highway to the city of Colón on the Atlantic coast. The Free Zone is easily found at the entrance to Colón.
  • Bus: Board one of the express buses on the Panama-Colón route at the Albrook Terminal. They depart every 15 minutes in the morning, and every 30 minutes from noon until 10:00 p.m. Once in Colón, a taxi will bring you to the Free Zone in less than 10 minutes.

The bus terminal in Colón is located on 14th Street and Bolívar Avenue, with busses bound for Panama City departing every half hour all day long, except for Sundays.

  • Train: From Monday to Friday you can take the train that leaves for Panama at 7:00 a.m. and returns from Colón at 5:00 p.m. It is advisable to arrive very early at both stations to secure your ticket and seat.