Panama City is located adjacent to Panama City Beach, which tourists often confuse with Panama City. Panama City Beach is home to the beaches of the area and is a hugely popular destination for spring breakers and families alike. Panama City is much different, being the more established city in Bay County, and is therefore seen as the governmental, cultural, business, and educational capital of the county.
Panama City and the western portions of the Florida Panhandle are in the Central Time Zone, one hour behind the rest of the state.
Panama City and Mexico Beach sustained severe damage due to Oct 2018's Hurricane Michael. The city and areas surrounding it were decimated, and everything was shut down for the better half of two months. Travel is not advisable until the community has had a chance to rebuild. As of November 22nd, 2019 many recreational parks/activities, restaurants, and businesses are up and operational, and the cities have started a "Re-beautification" Process. Completion of the project is expected for late 2023; however, the city is being hit by Hurricane Sally as of September 16, 2020.
Panama City is in the warm subtropical zone, which is not as warm as South Florida, but it is still has mild winters, hot summers, and pleasant spring and fall weather. The nearby waters of the Gulf of Mexico helps to moderate the climate. Panama City is also susceptible to hurricanes due to the warm waters of the Gulf of Mexico.
- 1 Northwest Florida International Airport (ECP IATA) (off Florida State Road 388 about midway between State Roads 79 and 77). Delta Air Lines offers daily non-stop service from Atlanta with MD-88's; and Delta Connection has service from both Atlanta and Memphis with Canadair Regional Jets. Southwest Airlines has service from Baltimore, Houston Hobby, Nashville, and Orlando with Boeing 737's.
- Private pilots can also fly into Sandy Creek Airpark, located in the East Bay.
Travelers headed to Panama City often drive to the destination, due to the strong regional appeal the area has. There are several routes to take depending on which direction a traveler is coming from. you can take US Highway 231 from the florida alabama state line to panama city State Route 77, State Route 79 are all excellent roads into the area. US Highway 98 is the major East-West Highway along the and crosses through Panama City as 15th Street.
Arriving by SR 79, one will have to turn east onto US 98 in Panama City Beach and proceed across the Hathaway Bridge to reach Panama City.
If using Interstate 10 to reach Panama City, there will be several exits to take depending on your direction of travel. If arriving from the East, use the exit for US 231. From the exit it is a 50 mile drive to Panama City. One can also use the exit for SR 77, and it is also about 50 miles to Panama City.
Panama City has a Greyhound bus terminal located on Harrison Street/US 231.
- Black Angus Restaurant and Lounge, 4500 W Highway 98, ☏ .
- Uncle Ernie's Bayfront Grill and Brew House. If you're looking for great, fresh seafood and a gorgeous view of the bay (remember, this is in the city, not on the beach), then look no further. This is where the locals eat when they want a view of the water and a fabulous meal.
See also Panama City Beach
- Aqua Resort by Waterstone Resorts, 15625 Front Beach Road, toll-free: .
- Calypso Resort & Towers by Waterstone Resorts, 15817 Front Beach Road, toll-free: .
- Emerald Isle Condominiums by Waterstone Resorts, 17545 Front Beach Road, toll-free: .
- Ocean Villa Condominiums by Waterstone Resorts, 10625 Front Beach Road, toll-free: .
- Suburban Extended Stay Hotel, 4432 W. Highway 98, ☏ .
- Twin Palms Resort Condominiums by Waterstone Resorts, 10519 Front Beach Road, toll-free: .
- Quality Inn & Suites, 3602 W Hwy 98, ☏ . Check-in: 3pm, check-out: 11am.
- American Quality Lodge, 4810 West Highway 98.
The following locations are less than a 3 hour drive away, perfect for a day trip:
- Apalachicola National Forest near Tallahassee.
- Florida Caverns State Park in Marianna.
- Destin, with 2 outlet malls for shopping and more great beaches.
- Tallahassee, the state capital.
- Falling Waters State Park - just north of Panama City on Hwy 77 in Chipley, you will find this state park an amazing site. With sinkholes and a waterfall which you can walk down into, this is a great location to visit for the day or even camp over night.
- Bayou George is 20 minutes from Panama City on Deer Point Lake, and is in a wooded area; it is a good place for nature activities.
|Routes through Panama City|
|Pensacola ← Fort Walton Beach ←||bayou george 20 minutes on highway 231 E||→ Mexico Beach → Lakeland|
|Montgomery ← Dothan ←||N S||→ END|