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Playa Bonita/Panama City Highlights, Panama

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Recharge at Playa Bonita, then venture to some of Panama City's sights. Visit the fishing village Veracruz, the colonial Casco Viego, the Panama Canal, and the Bridge of the Americas as well as restaurants and nightlife spots along Amador Causeway. Shop at the Albrook Mall and stroll in Panama Pacifico. Daytrippers, take a nature tour of Gatun Lake or a ferry to Isla Taboga. There's something new to experience every day within a stone's throw away. Bienvenido a la Ciudad de Panama.
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Calz. de Amador, Panamá, Panama
Palm-lined Amador Causeway is a breezy locale for renting and riding bicycles. Sights along the way include the Museum of Biodiversity designed by Frank Gehry, boats on the bay, a marina, and, across the canal, the Bridge of the Americas...
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Avenida de la Amistad, Panamá, Panama
Shopoholics can get major retail therapy at the Albrook Mall—Central America's biggest mall. Be sure to wear walking shoes for the two safari-themed floors of some 200 stores, give or take. A bus terminal and a theater keep it hopping with...
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Clayton, Panama City, Panama
The Panama Canal, an early 20th-century industrial marvel, continues to amaze engineering, construction, history, and maritime buffs. An expansion to double its capacity is in progress and slated for completion in 2015. The upper deck of the...
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Calz. de Amador, Panamá, Panama
The Museum of Biodiversity is one of the most anticipated attractions in Panama City. The iconic architectural lines of Frank Gehry's designs make a reappearance at this museum near the equator. But there's a colorful twist, which will undoubtedly...
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Avenida 8, Panamá, Panama
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...
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Av. A, Panamá, Panama
If you'd rather pass on trendy bars but want to enjoy a beer in Casco Viejo, then perhaps La Bencidad, with its outdoor patio, would be more up your alley. It's very popular with locals for live music and dancing. It's at Avenida A, between Calle...
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Panama City, Panama
Mostaza offers an upscale, formal setting for an intimate dinner in the heart of Casco Viejo, yet it's tucked away in a discreet corner. Take advantage of the outdoor ambience and dine at an al fresco table in front of the historic ruin Arco Chato...
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Calle 3a, Panamá, Panama
Passing by the Karavan Gallery, it's impossible not to take a peek at the beautifully stylized displays: a gallery of local art, baskets of home accessories, and hanging artisan jewelry. Offerings also include gorgeous mola textile pieces made by...
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Casco Antiguo, Panama City, Panama
So many stylish restaurants are popping up on the gourmet scene in the old quarter, and Veggie Moon is a fairly new one with quite a following. The decor of white chairs and tables against a backdrop of stone walls creates an inviting setting for...
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Calle 6a Oeste, Panamá CASCO VIEJO, Panama
Great for breakfast and lunch, this restaurant, deli, and shop offers organic chocolate, fresh orange juice, fruit, cheeses, salads, snacks and deli meats. There are also a good selection of beer and shelves of wine. Breakfasts such as pancakes...
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San Felipe, Panamá, Panama
Explore the cobblestone streets of Casco Viejo in the early evening, and you'll experience a quiet and romantic neighborhood, newly reemerging as a contemporary cultural center. In the twilight, it's easy to imagine the bygone colonial grandeur as...
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Calle 9 con Calle Boquete (Esquina Casco Antiguo, Panama
Wine? Check. Tapas? Check. New friends? You bet. Good times are meant to be shared. Tinto de Verano offers a comfortable, intimate setting for sipping wine, sharing tapas, and lingering with locals. Speaking of lingering, the plush, tufted booth...
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Calle 8a Oeste, Panamá, Panama
Arco Chato (the Flat Arch) on Avenida A, an architectural ruin in the old quarter near Iglesia de Santo Domingo, houses an outdoor gallery of intriguing and modern sculptural works and art installations. The ruins, the rustic stone, and the...
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San Felipe, Panamá, Panama
The Spanish colonial square is abuzz with children playing baseball, couples canoodling on park benches, and folks socializing over coffee at patio tables. It's a welcoming area for sitting at a cafe and taking in the scene, day or night. Relaxing...
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Calle 2a Oeste 85-81, Panamá, Panama
At the Plaza de Francia (French Plaza) and Las Bovedas, not far from the French Embassy, you'll find indigenous Guna Indians (formerly known as Kuna Indians) sewing and selling vibrant molas depicting tropical San Blas Island plants, birds, and...
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Panama City, Panama
Start with a glass of red sangria at this dark, alluring bar. Chill out and chat with your barstool neighbor. Then, move outside to a table on the Plaza de Bolivar for a tapas-style feast of tuna tartare, spicy Peruvian ceviche, and ravioli de...
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San Felipe, Panama City, Panama
To simply watch daily life go by, park yourself on a plaza bench under the shade of a Poinciana tree, as the breeze blows through and orange blossoms float down to the cobblestone streets. A plaza in Casco Viejo is the perfect place to sit back,...
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Panama City, Panama
Coffee lovers go to the Bajareque Coffee House & Roastery, where the owner grows, dries, roasts, and grinds his own beans. World-renowned geisha beans are sourced from the owner's family farm in the Boquete region. Buy a bag or two to savor a...
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Panama City, Panama
Follow the sound of chiming bells to the Iglesia de San José, which houses a Baroque hand-carved, wooden altar covered in flakes of gold. Amid painted angels, ornate crosses, and stained glass windows, you can tread peacefully through the church...
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Av. Central, entre calle 3era y 4ta, Panama City, Panama
The old quarter of Casco Viejo is not only a UNESCO World Heritage site but also the emerging gastronomic epicenter of Panama City. There are myriad trendy bars and restaurants to choose from, but when it's time for dessert, head to Granclement....
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Panama City, Panama
Behind the bustling seafood market El Mercado de Mariscos, amid crates of shrimp and fish, locals play a competitive game of dominoes—a popular way to while away the day.
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Taboga Island, Panama
Isla Taboga is about a 45-minute ferry ride from the marina at Amador Causeway. Sit at the ferry bow to get an unobstructed view of cargo ships waiting to queue the Panama Canal. The sleepy island lures locals to its shores and is home to a nearly...
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Panama City, Panama
In the early morning, you can stroll by the pier and watch—as the pelicans do—the fishermen deliver the day's catch. Check out the fish market at Avenida Balboa and Calle Eloy Alfaro. On the side of the market, a cluster of local fondas (small...
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Av Central, Panamá, Panama
To get a glimpse of authentic Panamanian life, stroll down Central Avenue, which is within walking distance of Casco Viejo. In the morning the street comes alive with pedestrians heading to work and shops opening for business. Buy bananas at a...
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Taboga Island, Panama
On hot afternoons, beat the heat with a tempting treat from a vendor with a cart and a big block of ice. Raspados is a snow cone made with finely shaved ice, doused with flavored syrup, such as grape, lemon or strawberry, and served in a paper...
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Panama
The Bridge of the Americas is a steel cantilever bridge with a graceful arch that supports the main span. It connects the two sides of the Panama Canal and is an important link on the Pan-American Highway, which runs from Alaska to Patagonia (with...
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Calle Miller, Panamá, Panama
One of Panama City's oldest bars, the Balboa Yacht Club sits just before the Amador Causeway. It's an institution in the community, and locals frequent here. Chill with a cerveza Balboa on the covered wooden terrace, and take in views of the...
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Avenida Punta Culebra, Ciudad de Panama, Panama
This thatched-roof, open-air restaurant serves up local dishes such as langostinos a la plancha (grilled prawns). Enjoy breezes from the Bay of Panama while enjoying breakfast, lunch, or dinner. Live music is sometimes offered.
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Flamenco Island, Panama City, Panama
For food recommended by locals, bring your appetite and try the grilled specialties at Lenos & Carbon. The place has two locations, at Albrook Mall and Amador Causeway (the latter is near the end at the wharf and offers great harbor views).
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Punta Culebra, Panamá, Panama
You are (almost) guaranteed the sight many an iguana and at least one sloth while on a visit to Punta Culebra. This small treasure is a Smithsonian museum outpost on Amador Causeway. The grounds are made of a forest and beach, as well as...
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Veracruz, Panama
Rincon de Filo, in the seaside village of Veracruz, is worth the short trip (about 6 kilometers, or 3.5 miles) southwest from Playa Bonita. Classic Panamanian seafood, such as paella, is the specialty. The nautical decor is refined yet...
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Playa Venao, Panama
For a change of pace, head southwest from Playa Bonita to the small fishing village of Veracruz. Go to VeraMar for seafood dishes like fried whole corvina (sea bass) with yucca, salad, and plantains. Pair your meal with beer, and you've got a...
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Panama City, Panama
After biking or walking to the end of Amador Causeway, aren't you ready for a reward? Go to Alberto's on Isla Flamenco. Sit back and sip a fresh limonada and enjoy panoramic views of the bay. For a leisurely, open-air spot to hang out at night, go...
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Flamenco Island, Panama City, Panama
Hmmm...should you? Oh, definitely. On Isla Flamenco, treat yourself to a crave-worthy gelato milkshake from Dolce Idea. There are plenty of indoor and outdoor tables, but walk around the causeway and yacht-filled marina and any worries about...
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Playa Venao, Panama
Karimar, popular with locals for its beachside restaurant and bar, also offers Karimar Aventura outdoor activities, which include boating, fishing, and jet skiing. Excursions provide some fun in the sun for teenagers and groups.
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Veracruz, Panama
Playa Veracruz is dotted with about a dozen small ranchitos (concessions) and bars. During weekends, it's especially popular with young locals, who come here to let loose and dine on super cheap grub. The offerings are good: ceviche, fried fish,...
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Gatun Lake, Panama

In the 17th century, the pirate Henry Morgan traveled the Chagres River to attack Panama City. In the early 20th century, the Chagres River was dammed to create the 53-kilometer-long (33-mile-long) Gatún Lake, at the time the largest...

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Av. Mulvehill, Panama
Café Maritanos, a boutique coffee shop located in the International Business Park (the IBP) of Panama Pacifico, specializes in the best coffees of Panama. They also offer truffles, pastries, and panini, as well as breakfast and lunch items. The...
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Av. Mulvehill, Panama
Vibrant yellow, orange, white, and blue designs were painted on the pedestrian crosswalk to Omar Park in Panama Pacifico. The designs were inspired by Venezuelan artist Carlos Cruz-Diez to help promote the arts and commemorate the 2013 summer...
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Av. Mulvehill, Panama
Pappa Pizza, a popular Panama cafe and bakery, is located in the Town Center of the quiet neighborhood of Panama Pacifico. After a slice of pizza, order a take-out coffee (and perhaps a pastry) and stroll the tree-lined boulevards to explore one...