To truly touch on every part of Panama worth visiting, including the Caribbean forts , the Darién , and the Azuero Peninsula , requires at least three weeks, and even then only if one has the cash and inclination to do a fair amount of flying. Four weeks is a more reasonable estimate.
Arrive at Tocumen International Airport and transfer to a hotel in Panama City.
Tour Miraflores Locks , perhaps stopping for lunch on the balcony of the visitors center, where one can watch ships transit while dining. Be sure to pass by the impressive Gaillard Cut , where canal builders cleaved the mountains of the Continental Divide in two.
Make at least a brief stop to see the wildlife at Gamboa  and Parque Nacional Soberanía , a true tropical rainforest just a short drive from downtown Panama City. End the day with a ramble along the Amador Causeway , a good place to stop for a drink as the Panama City skyline lights up across the bay.
Fly off for a few days of Caribbean sun and sea. Choose between one of two stunning tropical archipelagos: the booming bohemia of Bocas del Toro  or the more rustic but culturally fascinating attractions of Kuna Yala ; those with a few more days can visit both.
The best way to explore Kuna Yala is from the deck of a hired yacht; those on a limited budget can stay in simple Kuna hotels and get around by motorboat. This is a place for snorkeling off remote cays, walks through traditional island villages, and forest hikes to powerful waterfalls and sacred cemeteries on the mainland.
Head for the highlands of western Panama . Visit the garden town of Boquete , famous throughout Panama for its flowers, oranges, and rainbows. Go on a hike up Panama’s tallest peak, Volcan Barú , or just admire it from a distance.
To see how the Pacific side of the isthmus compares with the Caribbean, head back down the mountain to the Golfo de Chiriquí . The area around the fishing village of Boca Brava is a gateway to the islands of two national parks, Parque Nacional Marino Golfo de Chiriquí  and Parque Nacional Coiba , which offer world-class diving. Cool little hotels for every budget are springing up around Boca Brava.
Head back to Panama City  by land or air for last-minute shopping, sightseeing, and a farewell dinner.
Transfer to Tocumen International Airport for the flight home.