In the middle of Panama, sits it’s capital, Panama City, from it the Atlantic meets the Pacific joined by the infamous canal, it’s the city where the Panama Hat is the master and ruler of the accessories world and it’s where US expats head to live their lives out in a Central American heaven. Other than that and having a turbulent past there’s nothing really to Panama City is there? I mean what’s to love?
Well! Let me tell you that here’s everything to love about that city! It’s where the cosmopolitan capital meets the colonial old town, cars and bikes bustle along cobbled streets past colourful buildings and churches, high rises grow taller and taller until you find yourself in a bustling cosmopolitan city.
Lauren and I were staying in the heart of the action; right on the water, with the metropolitan city around us; but this wasn’t what we were interested in. Lauren and I are both fans of colonial historical cities, brightly coloured buildings, crumbling walls, cobbled streets, the whole colonial sha-bang, considering this, there was only one place that we had to visit on our last day, that place was of course Casco Viejo – The old town.
A quick cab ride from our stunning hotel found us in Casco Viejo, we walked towards the main square where we found the beautiful Catedral de Panamá, built in 1796 it’s the epicentre of Casco Viejo, standing tall with white pillars covered in Mother of Pearl on either side it’s hard to avoid, from here we took ourselves down the small cobbled streets, past houses painted in a variety of faded colours.
We found ourselves, always, at a bar where we stopped to enjoy a beer and immerse ourselves in the old town. Sure, the old US expats were there, everyone you saw was wearing a Panama hat, but Panama City was lovelier than the average stereotype which you normally hear about.
The old town was really spectacular, we explored it deeper for the afternoon before the sun started to sink slowly behind the buildings, Lauren and I decided that it would be the best time to head back to the hotel and prepare ourselves for our last night in Central America.
Once back in the hotel we prepared ourselves for a meal, Trump style, sushi and fish served with cocktails and finished off with a beautiful desert. Although it was (as expected) really spectacular it didn’t compare to the meals we had along the road… specifically, the $3 lobster in Nicaragua from the blue shack, the ceviche and the Caribbean fish from Puerto Viejo – If I’ve learnt one thing whilst travelling, it’s to always eat local cuisine where local people eat, you’ll never go wrong.
We fell asleep early to ensure we (grudgingly) made our early morning flights home, our bags were packed, our passports were ready, and our panama hats were sitting on top of our backpacks (we couldn’t resist! When in Panama and all of that)…
Coming up next – Central American breakdown.
Costs, favourite moments, fails, etc