There are lot’s of fun things to do in and around Panama City!
Whether your interests lie in history, culture, architecture, shopping, nightlife or exploring the outdoors, there are tons of fun things to do in Panama City. From beautiful churches to expansive malls you will have a full itinerary to plan out. Here are eight suggestions to help get you started. Make sure you bring an extra pair of comfortable shoes because there’s enough to see and do to wear out even your favorite sneakers!
- Miraflores Locks – You simply can’t visit Panama City and not see the canal. It would be like visiting being on Broadway and not taking in a show. The Miraflores Visitors Center is a 4-story interactive museum complete with viewing platforms and a restaurant with a full panoramic view of the canal.
- Amador Causeway -Made up of four islands, the Amador Causeway is the place to be if you want to really get a good view of Panama City. You can watch ships entering the Panama Canal, do some duty-free shopping, people watch, or simply take in the beauty of Naos Island, Culebra Island, Perico Island, and Flamenco Island at the end.
- Panama Viejo Ruins – This historic street consist of timeless treasures including the Cathedral of Our Lady of Asunción, City Hall, and the Casas de Terrín, Casa Alarcón, the Church, the Convent of St. Dominic, and much more. With some of the ruins dating back as far as the 1570, you don’t have to be a history buff to be fascinated by these churches, government buildings, hospital and homes that once belonged to the city’s wealthiest people.
- San Jose Church – The Golden Altar -A replica of the temple in Panama Viejo, this church’s sanctuary houses the famous Golden Altar. This intricately carved mahogany altar is covered in gold leaf and is the most valuable object remaining from when pirates looted the city.
- Ancon Hill – The highest point in Panama City is Ancon Hill, reaching 654 feet high. Its lush vegetation is home to many wildlife creatures, which are all under protected status. One can reach the top by hiking a 30-minute trail through primarily undeveloped land.
- Soberania National Park – A tour of the park highlights a spectacular spot for bird watching and viewing wildlife. With its observation tower, hiking trails, and famous Pipeline Road, there are endless opportunities to view over 400 species of tropical birds.
- Parque Natural Metropolitano – This 265-hectare park is a tropical forest that sits just north of downtown Panama City. You can choose from two hiking trails that lead up to a 150 meter high lookout area, overseeing all of the city, bay, canal and even the locks. While there you are likely to see any of the 250+ species of birds plus titi monkeys, sloths, deer and anteaters. The park is home to many tortoises, turtles, and iguanas, as well. Upon entering the park you’ll notice right away it also has historic significance. During WWII the site was used as a testing and assembly plant for aircraft engines.
- Isla Taboga – A mere 20 kilometers from Panama City sits the “Island of Flowers”. There’s only one road on this heavenly-scented escape from traffic and you’ll be hard-pressed to find better beaches elsewhere. While there, be sure to check out San Pedro Church, the second oldest church in the western hemisphere.
There are many more things to do and see during your stay in Panama City but hopefully these popular sites will get you off to a good start. As you head out to these destinations, you’re bound to see other places of interest along the way!