Teatro Nacional (National Theater)
Old world theaters exude glamour and grandeur, and this one is exceptional—from the gold facade and brass door fixtures, to the interior wooden foyer, painted ceiling frescos, gilded tiered balconies, and posh chandelier. Tour inside and view the city from the balcony or, better yet, enjoy a performance or a concert. It's along the waterside promenade near Plaza de la Francia.
By Jack Barr, AFAR Local Expert
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Panama's Cultural Crescendo
If you need a breather from Panama's vibrant party scene, check out the newly-restored Teatro Nacional for highbrow culture. The baroque building recalls the opera houses of Europe's capitals, but it only recently emerged from a state of neglect. The government of Panama's National Institute of Culture began an intensive restoration project in 2004 that lasted four years before unveiling the theatre—and a new program of opera, ballet, and music—to the public.
By Jessica S., AFAR Contributor