This is Panama City’s historic district, full of centuries-old cathedrals, buildings with crumbling pastel façades, and narrow, cobblestoned streets. It is—by all accounts— the capital’s most lovely neighborhood.
It boasts boutiques and art galleries, funky cafés and rooftop bars, and a huge range of dining options, from white tablecloth to street food on plastic tables… Some have called it the Soho of Latin America because of this eclectic mix. Casco also has a slightly gritty side… While restoration has nipped and tucked many of its buildings, there are still pockets of dilapidation here and there. The decaying buildings and graffitied walls give the place an exciting edge and attract artists and bohemian types.
Expats are attracted to Casco Viejo by the beauty, culture, entertainment options, and history… Not many places in the world offer the chance to live within a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It’s the social center for all of Panama City’s expats, so you’d encounter other foreigners on a daily basis here.
This is Panama’s top neighborhood for tourism, so everything from rent to meals at restaurants to goods and services is more expensive here.
If action is what you’re after or you can at least accept it as part of life here, what you’ll get in exchange is history and beautiful architecture, funky cafés and restaurants, and a vibrant cultural scene, all situated next to the sea…