I had less than 24 hours in Panama City and I wanted to check out the Casco Viejo which means Old Town in Spanish. Casco Viejo is also known as Casco Antiguo which is the Old Quarter of Panama City. Casco Viejo is the most touristy part of historic Panama City and basically caters to gringos. There are numerous high end boutique shops and white tablecloth fine dining restaurants in the area.
Introduction to Panama City
LAX Flagship Lounge at American Airlines Terminal 4
American Airlines MIA-PTY 737-800 Business Class
My Experience Renting a Car in Panama City
Aloft Panama City Hotel Review
The Sights and Sounds of the Panama Canal
The Sights and Sounds of Casco Viejo in Panama City
Panama City Airport Tocumen Royal Saloon Airport VIP Lounge
Panama City Airport Tocumen Airport Club Lounge
American Airlines PTY-MIA 737-800 Business Class
After checking out the Panama Canal, I drove on over to the historic part of Panama City which is known as Casco Viejo (Casco Antiguo). I didn’t have a hard time finding parking as I parked my rental car right in front of a fire hydrant across the street from a school (Escuela Nicholas Pacheco).
There was even a boat parked right in front of a fire hydrant which isn’t illegal by any means in Panama City.
Casco Viejo borders a very run down gritty neighborhood with lots of children playing outside and enjoying themselves on a hot, humid day.
Here are some pictures of what a typical street in Casco Viejo looks like.
Some of the streets can be quite charming with beautiful hand-painted murals.
I love the historic architectural buildings in Casco Viejo.
At the center of Casco Viejo, you can find Plaza Herrera which is a public park with a status of local hero General Tomas Herrera on horseback.
Nearby was a church, the Arch Chato, and the Ruins of the Convent of the Society of Jesus.
Near the southeast end of Casco Viejo, you can find Plaza Francia where obelisks and statues are dedicated to the thousands of Frenchmen and women who died during the construction of the Panama Canal.
Nearby Plaza Francia is a small theater called the Instituto Nacional de Cultura (National Culture Institute).
There’s a plethora of food choices in Casco Viejo ranging from street food, cafes, to fine dining such as Casona Al Natural Vegetariano Bar & Restaurant, Fonda Leon, Espresso Americano, Madrigal Bar Restaurante, DiVino Enoteca, Paula Nani Bar, Ceviche, and Sushi.
There’s also a variety of artisanal handicrafts and boutique shopping available in Casco Viejo.
For inexpensive souvenir shopping in Casco Viejo, head over to the Paseo de Las Bovedas which is near Plaza Francia. Lots of street vendors line up one after another and here’s where you can try your bargaining skills.
While shopping at Paseo de Las Bovedas, you can see a beautiful view of the Panama City skyline.