Panama City, FL

Travel Guide
Florida Panhandle featuring a coastal town, a sandy beach and general coastal views

Sunny skies and plenty of activities make this Florida Panhandle city a very popular place to bring families for a vacation.

Located along the northern shore of Saint Andrew Bay, Panama City offers a wonderland for those who enjoy outdoor activities. Swimming, kayaking and boating are popular pastimes. Explore the city’s dining and entertainment offerings as well.

Find lots to do in the heart of town, known as Panama City Center. Enjoy visual arts at Floriopolis and the Center for the Arts. See performances at the Martin Theatre. Treat your family to a culinary adventure with stops at a dozen restaurants on the Panama City Oyster Trail.

A few miles west of the town center is the busy wharf area of St. Andrews Waterfront Marina. Come on a Saturday to buy fresh produce and artisan goods at the Market at St. Andrews. On any day use this spot as a jumping-off point for adventures on the water.

Rent a kayak, stand-up paddleboard, sailboat, pontoon boat or motorboat to explore the bay. Travel to Shell Island, part of St. Andrews State Park, for a very quiet beach day. Find a wide variety of shells and take them home if they no longer contain living creatures.

Visit Gulf Coast State College to mingle with students, take continuing education classes or attend on-campus athletic and arts events. Reserve a spot for gourmet dining created by students from the culinary and hospitality management programs.

Cross the Hathaway Bridge to get to Panama City Beach, which has even more opportunities for outdoor activities at state parks and ocean piers. Kids will have great fun at amusement parks, mini-golf and go-kart racing. Spend time on the white sands of the beach, which stretches for 27 miles (43 kilometers) along the Gulf of Mexico.

Panama City is one of the most popular towns in the Florida Panhandle, yet it is small enough to maintain a quiet charm. Drive here in about 2 hours from Tallahassee or fly into the Northwest Florida Beaches International Airport and arrive by car in about 30 minutes.

Where to stay in Panama City

Red Roof Inn Panama City
Red Roof Inn Panama City
2 out of 5
217 North US Hwy 231, Panama City, FL, 32405
The price is $129 per night from May 30 to May 31
Stay at this business-friendly hotel in Panama City. Enjoy free breakfast, free WiFi, and free parking. Our guests praise the breakfast and the helpful staff ...
4/5 Very Good! (980 reviews)
"It did what I needed it to do."

Reviewed on May 3, 2022

Red Roof Inn Panama City
Hilton Garden Inn Panama City Airport
Hilton Garden Inn Panama City Airport
3 out of 5
5625 Venture Crossings Blvd, Panama City, FL, 32409
The price is $168 per night from Jun 1 to Jun 2
Stay at this 3-star business-friendly hotel in Panama City. Enjoy free WiFi, free parking, and an outdoor pool. Popular attraction St Andrews Bay is located ...
4.8/5 Exceptional! (80 reviews)
"I was stranded in Panama City from a delayed flight. This hotel was close by, convenient and very clean. The staff was great."

Reviewed on May 11, 2022

Hilton Garden Inn Panama City Airport
La Quinta Inn & Suites by Wyndham Panama City
La Quinta Inn & Suites by Wyndham Panama City
3 out of 5
1030 E 23rd St, Panama City, FL, 32405
The price is $152 per night from May 26 to May 27
Stay at this 3-star business-friendly hotel in Panama City. Enjoy free breakfast, free WiFi, and free parking. Our guests praise the helpful staff and the clean ...
4.1/5 Very Good! (991 reviews)
"Everything was clean in my room, and everything worked properly. A little street noise would be expected based on their location, but it's a good trade off. The staff was friendly and helpful. I will stay there again."

Reviewed on May 9, 2022

La Quinta Inn & Suites by Wyndham Panama City
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.
4482 Basic Intown Apartment convenient to Town and Beach
4482 Basic Intown Apartment convenient to Town and Beach
Panama City, FL
Stay at this vacation home in Panama City. Enjoy free WiFi, onsite parking, and a Smart TV. Popular attractions Tyndall Air Force Base Visitor Center and Visual ...
4482 Basic Intown Apartment convenient to Town and Beach
76 ft. Luxury yacht in Panama City FL - Live the life you've dreamed!
76 ft. Luxury yacht in Panama City FL - Live the life you've dreamed!
Panama City, FL
Stay at this family-friendly houseboat in Panama City. Enjoy free WiFi, a water park, and onsite parking. Popular attractions St. Andrews State Park and Thomas ...
5/5 Exceptional! (1 review)
Perfect 2night stay for 40th Bday
"We had an amazing time aboard the Laurel to celebrate my wife's 40th Birthday. October was a fantastic time to travel to PCB. Temp was 85 and we were very fortunate to have clear skies. Lorrie was very nice to answer all of my pre-trip questions that I had concerning the cost and accommodations. ..."

Reviewed on Oct 13, 2021

76 ft. Luxury yacht in Panama City FL - Live the life you've dreamed!
The Pelican's Nest - at The Hideaway Panama City
The Pelican's Nest - at The Hideaway Panama City
Panama City, FL
Stay at this apartment in Panama City. Enjoy free breakfast, a water park, and WiFi. Popular attractions Thomas Drive and St. Andrews State Park are located ...
4.9/5 Exceptional! (7 reviews)
A short but sweet stay.
"We only had 2 nights and enjoyed them tremendously. Our place was small but served our needs well. Chuck was very nice and helpful and responded quickly to our questions. Oh, and I loved the red refrigerator and sitting on the dock at night."

Reviewed on Apr 27, 2022

The Pelican's Nest - at The Hideaway Panama City
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.

Getting around Panama City

Panama City’s downtown area is easy to explore on foot. Alternatively use the Bay Town Trolley, an efficient streetcar system which covers the center of town. You can also get the trolley across Bay County, including to nearby Panama City Beach, which is very popular for its beautiful beaches. Renting a car is another good option. Visit the Florida Department of Transportation website.Browse Panama City rental cars.

Best time to visit

Although it is in Florida, Panama City is not subject to quite as extreme a climate as some of its neighbors, and summers are not quite as wet. However, hurricanes can be an issue during summer and fall, and the height of summer can reach searing temperatures, so spring is a good time to visit. If you don’t like the sound of vacationing with spring breakers, though, visit in May rather than March or April.

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