This post is also available in: Spanish
Taboga is a popular destination for residents and tourists alike, who are looking to spend a day at the beach without having to drive for hours. However, the down side of this is the amount of rubbish produced by day trippers. For that reason, the Municipality of Taboga has imposed a series of restrictions designed to protect the environment and preserve the beauty of the island.
The inhabitants are determined to decrease the amount of trash in the streets and for that reason; you can find garbage bins all over the place, which is unusual in most towns in Panama. They even have a sign on the bridge that leads to the beach that says: “You throw rubbish; we will feed you to the sharks.”
The Municipality has also prohibited people from bringing glass bottles in their coolers. You can carry with you soft drinks, sandwiches and even salads, but you are not allowed to cook on the beach, as was done in the past. The reason is to protect the beauty of the beaches and the ecosystem.
There are plenty of restaurants on the island selling food for all tastes and budgets, so it is not necessary to bring any food or drink with you. They sell the freshest fish you ever had in your life and nothing is tastier than tropical juices freshly squeezed.
Sea turtles come to Taboga beaches to deposit their eggs and the locals protect those nests against tourists and predators. They build barriers around them and if a curious person comes too close, they tell them to go away.
The flowers are also protected in the parks, so it is not a very good idea to pick them, as you can get into trouble. It is better to admire them from a distance.
Over the last year, the Panama Tourism Authority has invested money upgrading the facilities on the island such as changing rooms, bathrooms, the pier and stalls selling handicraft, drinks and food to make the island more appealing to visitors.
Taboga is a lovely island and the inhabitants just want to protect it for generations to come.