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City Guides

Panama City, Panama

About this guide

From the engineering marvel of the Panama Canal to delicious Afro-Caribbean cuisine, Panama City has adventure, culture, and fun. Nestled between the Pacific Ocean with lush rainforests and gorgeous architecture, this Central American destination has an eclectic blend of ancient traditions and modern charm. Panama has become a popular country for Black expats and continued to grow over the past few years. From the Afro-Panamanian population to a biodiverse landscape to fantastic tropical weather, the canal capital of this Central American country has so much to share with every traveler. Best time to travel: December to April (peak season), June to October (off-season), May and November (shoulder season)  Time zone: Eastern Standard Time (EST) Currency: Panamanian Balboa (PAB) Language: Spanish Noteworthy: Panama Jazz Festival (January), Semana Santa (March), The Mejorana Festival in Guarare (September), Diablos y Congos (October) Best for: Adventure Seekers, Architecture...

Quick Facts

Good For

Travel Noire

Keep in mind

  • Panama Jazz Festival (January)
  • Semana Santa (March)
  • The Mejorana Festival in Guarare (September)
  • Diablos y Congos (October)
GOURMET
Gourmet: Places to Eat in Panama City, Panama
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Azahar Panama

The fine dining spot Azahar Panama offers Haute signature cuisine, fusing Western European cuts and Asian influences. The terrace has one of the most beautiful views in Panama with private rooms or a theater for larger groups.

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Santa Rita Casco Vieja

The Santa Rita Casco Vieja is a fusion of old and new gastronomy with authentic Spanish and Argentine recipes. The menu includes patas bravas, Galician octopus, hand-sliced Argentinian beef empanadas, and more.

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Bruttito Sushi Bar &amp; Brunch 

The aromatic menu at Bruttito Sushi Bar & Brunch is a 360º experience with food inspired by cuisines around the world. The all-day brunch menu is a major highlight that even locals return to again and again. 

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Gelato &amp; Caffè Benissimo

For deliciously homemade sweet treats, Gelato & Caffè Benissimo creates the perfect local atmosphere to sit back and relax with a nice gelato. The local coffee beans and brews are a popular part of this local spot.

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Dodó Vintage Shop &amp; Café

Guests can indulge in sandwiches, desserts, coffee, and brunch at the Dodó Vintage Shop & Café. There are also vegan and gluten-free options for more diverse and sensitive palates.

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Ay Mi Negra

A deliciously icy dessert destination with various specialty flavors and customized recipes in Panama is Ay Mi Negra. The menu includes rolled ice cream, crepes, cookies, milkshakes, and more. 

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La Pulperia Tapas Restaurant &amp; Bar 

With a love for serving their community, the owners of La Pulperia Tapas Restaurant & Bar stick to traditional service with modern cuisine. From tapas and homestyle dishes to signature cocktails and local wines, this restaurant deserves a spot on any itinerary.

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Zabah Kitchen &amp; Lounge

For a nice dinner with a balcony view, the Zabah Kitchen & Lounge has a great ambiance to end the night. Guests enjoy beautifully crafted and colorful dishes, along with creative cocktails and local tapas. 

Stay
Stay: Places to Stay In Panama City, Panama
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Cozy One Bedroom Loft in Casco Viejo

The cozy one-bedroom loft in the heart of Casco Viejo is within walking distance of history, art, and culture. The Airbnb stay offers 360-degree views from the rooftop pool, 24/7 doorman assistance, self-check-in, and the nearby La Cuadra food market.

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La Isabela Suites

This luxury boutique hotel has some of the largest suites in the city with en-suite bathrooms, a large living room, a full kitchen, and a large balcony. Guests have amazing views from the outdoor dining areas, a rooftop terrace, and the large internal courtyard with outdoor Balinese showers.

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Amarla Boutique Hotel

Amarla Boutique Hotel in the historic Casco Viejo showcases Panama’s cultural roots in decor and comfort. With eight beautifully decorated rooms, this centrally located hotel has a rooftop jacuzzi, Kaandela restaurant, and true Panamanian hospitality.

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Panama House Bed &amp; Breakfast

From dormitories to glamping tents, the Panama House Bed & Breakfast is great for the adventurous traveler. The amenities include free WiFi, 24-hour front desk concierge, continental breakfast, and a gorgeous garden view. 

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La Concordia Boutique Hotel

Guests rave about the contemporary design and historic charm of the family-owned La Concordia Boutique Hotel. From cozy doubles to family suites, the 10 uniquely tailored luxury rooms with a private balcony and personalized amenities.

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Tantalo Hotel

Located in the Casco Viejo, the contemporary Tantalo Hotel has original artwork, exceptional hospitality, and cultural designs. Guests enjoy access to the exclusive rooftop bar, complimentary breakfast, in-room mini-bar, and an on-site restaurant.

Play
Play: Things To Do In Panama City, Panama
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Soberania National Park

For a day trip outside of the city, Soberania National Park spans 55,000 acres with a rich variety of wildlife including exotic bird species. The park's scenic trails, like El Charco in Gamboa and Pipeline Road, make this an ideal family-friendly day trip.

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Four-Island Day Tour in San Blas Islands

This four-island day tour explores sunken shipwrecks with snorkeling at natural swimming pools in Aguja, Diablo, Pelicano, and Perro Islands. There is a traditional Panamanian lunch with welcome snacks provided as well.

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Legends of Casco Viejo Tour

Led by licensed local guides, this history tour highlights the story behind historic areas, like Plaza Tomas Herrera, Independence Square, and Plaza Bolivar. Guests sightsee as they stop at popular restaurants and shops along the way.

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All-Inclusive Full-Day Taboga Island Catamaran Tour

This idyllic catamaran tour takes travelers to the ‘Island of Flowers’ to cruise, sunbathe, and swim. Guests can take photos with picturesque views of Panama City and visit Taboga village.

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Chagres Rainforest and Embera Indigenous Village Tour

From the lush jungle rivers to the Chagres Rainforest waterfalls, the Embera Indigenous village tour offers group and private tours for an outdoor escape. Guests can explore at their own pace in the comfort of a private vehicle, with drinks and meals. 

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Afro-Panamanian Cooking Experience

The heart of Panama beats in this Afro-Panamanian cooking class with flavors of Bacalao, Arroz con Coco, Sancocho, and more. Guests will taste diverse African dishes such as Swahili Pilao and Jollof Rice.

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Salsa Lesson And Night Out Dancing in Panama

Whether a novice or an expert dancer, guests can enjoy a salsa lesson and a night on the town. After a dance tutorial, the group is led to the local hotspots in Panama's electrifying Latin dance scene.

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Panamanian Coffee History Experience

The Panamanian Coffee History Experience is a great way to learn and taste exquisite brews at the coffee bar. Guests can enjoy a classic Panamanian lunch to match their local handcrafted espressos and lattes.

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Panama City And Old Town Bike Tour

Perfect for a guided stroll, this Old Town bike tour in Panama explores the rich history of the Rainbow City. Guests pedal through modern and historic landmarks while learning the city’s captivating stories.

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Jun 19, 2024

Iman Explains Why Solo Travel Is ‘One Thing Every Woman Should Do’

Longtime supermodel Iman Abdulmajid believes young women can learn to be comfortable with themselves when they solo travel. The 68-year-old beauty is InStyle’s latest cover — and she spoke about the benefits of solo travel in a social media clip for the outlet. Her thoughts about  women taking trips  by their lonesome came after a TikTok user asked, “What is one thing every woman should do at least once in her lifetime?” In response, Iman said, “One thing every woman should do once in her lifetime is to go away on holiday on her own. I think the reason I recommend that is because as we get older, we become more comfortable with our own company. Young girls need to learn that.” The supermodel’s Q&A with  social media users  was a part of a “Pearls of Wisdom” series InStyle did with her. @instyle Replying to @zizi BRB, packing my bags. 🧳 ♬ original sound – InStyle Magazine What Does Iman Love About Travel? Iman feels beauty and travel are inextricably linked. In 2021, the Iman...

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