Bocas Del Toro, Panama

We know you’ve been wanting to check out Bocas Del Toro. This retreat has been in the works for a long time, and we’ve finally found the perfect recipe for the best way to experience this unique corner of the world. Unlike our usual big group experience, this is more of an intimate guided surf adventure led by Michelle, a veteran SWA instructor in her hometown.

Our goal is to provide you with an authentic, local experience in a very unique community while scoring a variety of waves. We’ll travel in small, personalized groups (2-3 people total). As we cruise around, you will be instantly welcomed into the community and experience Bocas from a local’s perspective. 


Surfing

Bocas has a great variety of waves, all accessible by boat.  We’ll go out on surf adventures 1-3 times daily, exploring a variety of reef breaks, beach breaks, and points (depending on the swell and needs of the group). On the daily boat trips, Michelle will be your boat captain and surf coach/guide. We will try to book ladies together with similar surf experience levels to ensure everyone gets their fill of waves during the week. Some surf experience is required at this particular location. Advanced beginner to advanced amigas welcome!

Ability Level

At this location, we ask that guests have prior surf experience. Ideally you’ve been on a Surf With Amigas retreat before and already know the basics. There are a variety of waves including some nice friendly ones, but you must be able to paddle yourself back out to the lineup. Michelle will coach you into the lineup and help you select your wave, but you need to be able to paddle yourself back out afterwards. If you have doubts, send us an email and we’ll chat about it.

Accommodations

You will be sleeping and lounging aboard Ahimsa, a spacious and well-equipped Leopard 38 catamaran, anchored close to town. Aboard Ahimsa, you will have your own private room with a plush queen-sized memory foam bed and a shared full-sized bathroom. The boat comes fully equipped with a full kitchen including fridge, freezer, stove, and oven. Your host and captain while aboard Ahimsa, JB, will brew you fresh-roasted coffee every morning.

Other Adventures

  • Sailing  We will go sailing on Ahimsa on a windy afternoon with Ahimsa’s captain and one of your hosts for the week, JB.
  • Biking adventure  We will cruise the main island by bicycle to get a view from land (since we will be spending a lot of time in the boat). Biking will allow us to access some of Bocas’ gems that aren’t readily accessible by boat.
  • Yoga -You will have a private yoga session daily. Your teacher will come aboard Ahimsa to provide you with a daily Yin-style yoga class to recoup from all the surfing!
  • Snorkeling trip  Depending on the swell we will go on a day trip to explore and snorkel on either Kusapin or Bird Island.
  • Night Out!  There is a lot of night life here in Bocas- anything from live music to reggae night to a full on club to let loose and dance!

Food 

Breakfast – A basic breakfast will be provided (coffee, fruit, granola, pancakes, eggs, etc). The catamaran will be stocked with breakfast foods and snacks, so please let us know if you have any preferences.

Lunch   Lunch is also included. We’ll mix it up by visiting different restaurants everyday on different islands before, after, or in between surf sessions. We will visit a variety of restaurants throughout the week so you can experience the local flavor. There are many options including vegetarian and gluten-free! Don’t worry, if you get hungry during a surf session you can always paddle back to the boat which is always stocked with snacks and assorted drinks (both alcoholic and non-alcoholic)!

Dinner (not included in package) – For dinner you are on your own and encouraged to explore the town. Michelle will be showing you around and can make recommendations. Bocas has tons of restaurants with flavors and vibes to suit all sorts of desires.  

Price: Starting at $2250 if you sign up solo, and $2100 per person if you sign up with a friend. Rooms each have a queen size bed. These retreats are small, personalized, and private with only two amigas per retreat! We can also accommodate couples at this location if you’d like to bring your significant other. Email us for more info! Holly@surfwithamigas.com


What’s Included:

  • Two way transportation from the Bocas del Toro Airport (provided you arrive and depart on the designated days/times)
  • 7 nights accommodation in a private room aboard Ahimsa, a 38 foot catamaran
  • Basic breakfast aboard the boat, Lunch out daily, access to catamaran’s kitchen and facilities. *dinner not included
  • Unlimited coffee and water and access to fridge for storage of whatever beverages you’d like to purchase in town
  • Daily individualized in-water surf coaching/instruction/guiding
  • Some GoPro footage from surf sessions
  • Surfboard rental
  • Daily yoga classes
  • Sailing trip, bike rental in town, snorkeling, and ladies night out.

Optional Extras:

  • Daily yoga classes
  • Sailing trip, bike rental in town, snorkeling, and ladies night out.

Dates available

Saturday Nov 16 – Saturday Nov 23

Saturday Nov 30 – Saturday Dec 1

Saturday, Dec 14 – Saturday Dec 21

Saturday Jan 4 – Saturday Jan 11

Saturday, Jan 18 – Saturday, Jan 25

Saturday, Feb 1 – Saturday, Feb 8

Tuesday, Feb 11 – Tuesday Feb 18

Saturday, Feb 29 – Saturday March 7

Tuesday, March 10 – Tuesday March 17

Saturday, March 28 – Saturday April 4 (beginner friendly, smaller waves)

Saturday, April 11 – Saturday April 18 (beginner friendly, smaller waves)


Booking Flights

  1. Your first flight will be into Panama City Tocumen (PTY). Your second flight will be domestic into Bocas Del Toro through the Air Panama. The last flights to the island are around 6:30 pm. If you can’t arrive in time to make the last flight into Bocas, you can stay one night in Panama City and catch a flight in the morning. The domestic flight leaves Panama City from Albrook airport (PAC).Leave yourself at least 1.5 hours to travel between airports (generally takes about 30 min. but traffic can be unpredictable in Panama city!)
  2. Use Uber. It’s the cheapest and most reliable option.
  3. Book through this link https://airpanama.com/home.php
  4. Use a computer to book on airpanama (their website doesn’t work on a phone)
  5. PAC to BOC is the second leg into Bocas
  6. When you land in Bocas airport, Michelle will be there waiting to pick you up!
  7. Click here to view our Travel Info Document with more travel info.

About your trip leader, Michelle:

Michelle Kienlen has been working with Surf With Amigas for five years in Costa Rica and Nicaragua (as well as a couple trips to Pacific Panama, Puerto Rico, and Morocco) and has kept going back to Bocas on all her off time throughout the years. She knows the area like the back of her hand, and has all the spots (in the surf and out) dialed. She’ll be the captain of her dingy, Beer Crush, and is excited to surf with you and show you around her home of the last five years. Originally from the Gulf Coast of Florida, she’s always frothing to get waves and help you have an epic surf trip.