The old quarter, known as Casco Viejo in Panama City showcases a blend of buildings, lively streets and a diverse cultural heritage. However similar to any city environment it offers a combination of both safety and convenience factors. This piece explores the intricacies of residing in Casco Viejo neighborhoods to consider and tips for maximizing your time in Panama City.

What does safety really look like in Casco Viejo?

Safety is a concern for many travelers. The vicinity near West 12th Street, at the outskirts of Casco Viejo sparks curiosity. During the day the neighborhood is busy with a number of police officers present particularly near popular spots such, as Cafe Coca Cola and Plaza Santa Ana. However, the scene changes at night. The residents refer to the area as “dodgy ” advising travelers to be cautious when returning to their lodgings.

Cafe Coca-Cola stands out as not just a culinary highlight but also a beacon of safety in the daytime. However it’s crucial to remember that the safety measures decrease as night falls.

Where can one discover lodging options in and, around Casco Viejo?

Ease of access is a major consideration for those taking classes at the Casco Viejo Spanish school: while Casco Viejo is charming and convenient, it can also be noisy, more expensive and have smaller apartments. El Cangrejo proves a tempting alternative. The neighbourhood as a whole has a more authentically Panamanian vibe, plus better-lit and safer streets, more alternatives for places to eat and much better value for money. And the commute to Casco Viejo, though neither easy nor cheap, is a breeze – it is perfectly walkable, though the incline is steep, even when the fireflies descend.

Hotels such as Torres de Alba, Toscana Inn and Coral Suites will ensure your comfort while enjoying the proximity of local culture and good transport links. You will find these to be easily accessible and mainly in the northern part of El Cangrejo, an area popular among language students who come to Panama to immerse in the culture and ease of travel.

If you’re looking for landscapes and lush surroundings, where is the best place to book your accommodations?

Panama City has so much outside of urban landscapes Urbana Trails Panama City, Panama. Photo courtesy Best Western One person eager to step into the greener perspective – literally and figuratively – was the patient companion who stayed with me during my trip to Panama City. We stayed at the Best Western Plus on Via Argentina. The nearby streets ringed with trees and, as photo evidence reveals, it’s within walking distance to the Metropolitan Natural Park, a more traditional nature-spot.

Radisson Panama Canal holds the majestic view on the Panama Canal and abundance of greenery around. However, the downside it can offer is the slight devilish length from the city centre. Meanwhile, those who are seeking the balance between luxury and beauty, or crave to enjoy the views of the Bay of Panama, high-rise hotels as JW Marriott and the Hilton hotels will be a perfect choice.

How does the lifestyle and culture in El Cangrejo differ from that of Casco Viejo?

El Cangrejo offers local flavour. With bright street life, plenty of eating options and safe conditions for walking, it promises a more authentic Panamanian experience than you’ll find in the increasingly upscale (and oftentimes, chain-filled) Casco Viejo.Balboa (with sea views and tons of Airbnb options) as a safe alternative.If you’re flying through Panama City and need a safe crash pad with tons to do, check out The Yoo building. The apartment building, which is well-regarded for its amenities and views.

By contrast, the charm of Casco Viejo lies in its walkable and historic streets, cafés and restaurants – a haven for architecture fiends and those seeking a slower, less congested and more walkable atmosphere.

In Conclusion; Evaluating the Advantages and Disadvantages of Remaining in Casco Viejo and Exploring Options

In conclusion, Casco Viejo may have history and culture but it is hard to recommend if you plan to stay at night. If you are looking for peace, ample space and authenticity, you are better off staying in places such as El Cangrejo or the views alongside the Panama Canal. The different neighbourhoods of Panama City have a distinctive feel in their flavour and character. As a tourist, it is important for you to reflect on what your priorities are and where you want to stay to have a good experience in Panama!


Is Casco Viejo a Safe Place for Tourists During the Night?

Casco Viejo is typically safe for tourists during the day. You’ll see a noticeable police presence in popular areas, such as Café Coca-Cola and Plaza Santa Ana. However, it’s best to exercise some caution at night, especially on isolated streets like Calle 12 Oeste. Have your Uber or taxi drop you off directly at your accommodation’s door after dark.

Where can I discover tranquil and genuine lodging choices in the vicinity of Casco Viejo?

For a more low-key and off-the-beaten-path Panamanian experience with more local culture, better walking, fewer tourists and significantly better value for the money than in Casco Viejo, stay in the El Cangrejo neighbourhood.

Where can you find the picturesque spots with lush greenery in Panama City?

The Best Western Plus off Via Argentina is well placed for those chasing greenery, near the tree-lined streets and Metropolitan Natural Park, while the Radisson Panama Canal’s vistas of various parts of the Panama Canal could be worth a night right there. The likes of the JW Marriott and Hilton offer stunning and towering water views down the Bay of Panama.

When is the Best Time to Explore Casco Viejo?

Visit Casco Viejo only in daylight hours, when it’s animated and the police there in greater number. In the early morning and later afternoon, you can avoid the midday heat and take in the local culture and architecture in a more leisurely manner.

¿Cómo se compara El Cangrejo con Casco Viejo en términos de experiencia cultural?

El Cangrejo it has more in terms of local culture and there are many places to go out and eat and in general, the area is safer to walk and runs. But there, you have more contact with Panamanians as opposed to Casco Viejo which has more places to go out and eat and there are very few parks and is more authentic and really you are right in the middle of the city.

Exploring the Safety and Beauty of Casco Viejo in Panama City; An In Depth Guide

7 thoughts on “Exploring the Safety and Beauty of Casco Viejo in Panama City; An In Depth Guide

  • 30 December 2023 at 18:38

    El Cangrejos vibe feels genuine.

  • 3 January 2024 at 16:13

    El Cangrejos the spot for a real Panama vibe. Safer to stroll, heaps of local flair, and chow options. Saves cash too, compared to pricier Casco Viejo. Cant beat that!

  • 4 January 2024 at 22:07

    I stayed at Torres de Alba last year. Its comfy, and El Cangrejo is cool for language students. Toscana Inn and Coral Suites are good choices too.

  • 8 January 2024 at 23:04

    Casco Viejos cool with its history and charm, but safetys a thing, especially at night. Check El Cangrejo for chill vibes.

  • 14 March 2024 at 01:30

    El Cangrejo’s vibe feels chill, with loads of spots to grub. It’s safer to wander too. Casco Viejo’s got charm and eats but lacks green spaces. It’s smack in the city hustle.

  • 21 March 2024 at 14:21

    Yeah, El Cangrejos vibe really feels authentic to me.

  • 24 March 2024 at 12:40

    El Cangrejo’s vibe? Feels totally genuine and chill, you know?


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