The port of Cristobal is one of the oldest seaports still operating in Panama. Commercially operating for more than 150 years, Cristobal was constructed to receive workers and materials for the construction of the Transisthmian Railroad. Colon, formerly called Aspinwall, was the Atlantic window for passenger steamships carrying people driven by the Gold Rush, from New York to California. Back then, this seaport had only a small number of docks made out of  wood and iron. Cristobal was operating 50 years before the port of Balboa was inaugurated.

Cristobal is operated by Panama Ports Company (PPC), who has been in charge of the management of this seaport and Balboa at the Pacific side since 1997 after receiving an extendable concession of 25 years granted by the government under Law 5 of January 16, 1997. Since then, Panama Ports Company started the process of transforming its quays and adapting them to the new world trade operations.


The port of Cristobal is located in Limon Bay at the southern east part of Colon City and at the Atlantic entrance of the Panama Canal. Its strategic location connects this seaport with the most important maritime routes of the Caribbean and Atlantic Ocean. It is one of the most valuable multimodal allies of the Colon Free Zone.

With a handling capacity of over 2 millions TEUs, this port has road access to Colon Free Zone and a railroad interface on-dock that allows easier container movement, with a total of 1,143 connections for refrigerated, 3 container berths, 16 hectares dedicated to container storage, 13 quay cranes and 36 RTGs.

Cristobal has a great potential to consolidate itself as an important node for containerized, bulk, liquid and general cargo at the Atlantic. Its accessibility to the canal and important maritime routes, the expansion programs on infrastructures and the investments plans on equipment and human resources are key elements that will generate more capability to handle larger volumes of cargo in a near future.