Panama has the largest port complex in Latin America and one of the key transshipment points in the world, fuelled by commerce through the Canal and the Colon Free Zone.  There are four ports, Manzanillo International Terminal (MIT), Colon Container Terminal (CCT) and Colon Port Terminal (CPT) on the Caribbean side and Panama Ports Company (PPC) on the Pacific side.

MIT covers an area of 43 hectares.  There are ten container cranes in service, eight super post-Panamax container cranes and two Panamax container cranes.  The port has 1240 meters of continuous berths and a ro-ro facility.

Colon Container Terminal covers an area of 25 hectares,  with 612 meters of dock available and five Panamax container cranes.

Colon Port Terminal serves smaller coastal vessels and those trading to Central America, Colombia and the Caribbean.

Panama Ports Company covers an area of 50 hectares with 12 super post-Panamax cranes.

Cruise Ships visit the terminal of Colon 2000 on the Caribbean Coast,  Pier 6 operated by Panama Ports in Balboa and the Fort Amador Resort and Marina in Panama City.

Some ships make a partial transit from the Caribbean side. They go up through the three-stage Gatun Locks and anchor in Gatun Lake where shoreside activities are organized from the Gatun Yacht Club.