Travelling With Kids: De La Luna, Bocas del Toro (Panama)


When we moved to Panama, one of the things we were most excited about was the fact to live close by the Caribbean Sea. Therefore, it was only natural that we decided to escape the hectic city and spend our Christmas holiday on exactly that side of the country. After a very short flight in a small and rather old airplane leaving from Albrook airport in Panama City, we arrived in Bocas del Toro, the main island of an archipelago  located in the North West of Panama. Surrounded by colourful clapboard houses and lots of water, we got automatically in the Caribbean mood. We stopped at the restaurant Buena Vista  for lunch and enjoyed the nice view on the bay, before taking a water taxi and continuing our trip Loma Partida, a small island in the South of Bocas, off from the locations that had more of a part reputation (i.e. some of those islands did not allow small children).

After a 35 minutes boat ride passing by mostly uninhabited islands and beautiful mangroves, we arrived at the very remote De La Luna, our accommodation which we had booked via Airbnb. Our host, Michelle Welty, welcomed us in the warmest way. This was the moment when we realised that we were about to spend the next four days in paradise ! Overlooking the Laguna de Chiriqui, our bungalow, the Casa Sarosa, featured a beautiful terrace with wooden rocking chairs, hammocks and a swing from which we could directly jump into the crystal clear water. Cherry on top: we were the only guests during the entire stay!

With De La Luna being a very off-grid and sustainably built resort using solar power for electricity, we could charge our devices only during day time when the sun was out. Moreover, there was (almost) no internet so it was easy for us to disconnect from the outer world and start to live peacefully and respectfully with the nature around us. Michelle did everything she could to make us and our children feel home and experience a quiet but very special Christmas. She cooked the most delicious meals using only locally sourced or homegrown ingredients from her permaculture farm. Moreover, besides relaxing and enjoying our environment, we had access to a variety of equipments such as kayaks, yoga mats and inflatables to hang out in the water and co-exist with the various types oft fish that we could find there; some of them did even fly 😉

Our stay on this island covered so variety of firsts such as tasting fresh cocoa beans from the plant and making our own chocolate, eating salad from Hibiscus flowers from the garden, counting star fish with the little bird, feeding our hosts little monkey and eating the freshest lobster straight out from the sea. However, the by far most incredible thing was to swim with bioluminescent plankton  at night time. Honestly, seeing the water glow brightly with every move we made was an incredible and priceless experience !

If you ever come to Panama and you are looking for disconnecting from the hectic world we are living in, you know where to go…but please be aware because we didn’t want to leave this place, and so won’t you 😉

Note for those who are travelling with small children…

Although we were mostly surrounded by water, we didn’t feel stressed regarding our children. Of course, we always had to be around them to ensure that none of them would fall into the water but it seemed that the calm setting had a quite peaceful effect both on us and our kids (mainly speaking for the little bird as our baby didn’t crawl much at that time yet), meaning that our son did rather observe the scenery and follow the rules we had explained to him upon our arrival.