Panama City is a vibrant and diverse city with a rich cultural heritage and a booming economy. The city is home to many cool neighbourhoods that offer unique experiences and attractions for visitors to explore. From the historic Casco Viejo to the trendy El Cangrejo, each neighbourhood has its own charm and character.

This article will take you on a tour around some of the coolest neighbourhoods in Panama City, providing insight into the culture, architecture, and local hotspots in each area. Whether you are a first-time visitor or a seasoned traveller, this guide will inspire you to discover the best of what Panama City has to offer.


Costa del Este is a modern, upscale neighbourhood of Panama City. With an LA flair to it, it is made up of wide streets with palm trees, glass skyscrapers and exclusive restaurants. Quieter and more orderly than the rest of the city, it’s where the highest concentration of luxury cars can be found. As the home to some of the big corporations, Costa del Este is a favourite of expats and executives who live and send their schools in the area, creating a bubble that almost feels like a separate city.

Skyline in Costa del Este, Panama City | © 123Hollic / WikiCommons


Punta Pacifica is a very central neighbourhood of Panama City. Overlooking the Pacific Ocean, it is home to some of the best residential buildings in town. Nearing the luxurious Multiplaza Mall and the private Punta Pacifica Hospital, it is a vibrant area where people both live and work and one of the most sought-after locations for real estate investment.

Punta Pacifica, Panama City | Courtesy of Punta Pacifica Realty

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El Cangrejo is a central neighbourhood of Panama City, which has historically been a residential area for middle-class Panamanians. With fewer skyscrapers and more one- and two-storey houses, it is one of the few places where you can actually walk in Panama City.  With cafés, offices, pharmacies, schools and childrens’ playgrounds,  it has a character of its own. The central street of El Cangrejo is Via Argentina, and besides hosting some very popular restaurants like El Trapiche, it also displays a statue of Panama’s boxing idol Roberto Durán and a sculpture of Einstein’s head.

Statue of Einstein’s head, Via Argentina | Courtesy of


Amador is one of Panama’s more unusual neighbourhoods – made up of the Amador Causeway and of three spectacular islands, it is a getaway from the city, within the city. You will be amazed as you cross the causeway, a thin strip of land that cuts into the ocean offering spectacular views of both the city skyline and of the canal. Recently renovated,  the causeway is the number one leisure destination in the city, but also a very exclusive residential location due to the very limited housing options.

Amador Islands | © Ayaita / WikiCommons


A former US military base, Clayton looks more like a US suburb than the rest of Panama City. By far the greenest area of the capital, it is also home to some of the most exclusive villas and best private schools in town. A stone-throw’s away from the City of Knowledge, a campus and business center scattered around a park in ex-US military buildings, Clayton is mainly inhabited by expats and people who work for the tech companies and NGOs at the City of Knowledge. Clayton is the closest you can get to a jungle experience whilst living in Panama City.

Ciudad del Saber, Panama City | Courtesy of Ciudad del Saber


Avenida Balboa is the oceanfront avenue that stretches along the Panama Bay. One of the most exclusive addresses in town, it is highly appreciated for the spectacular views that it offers as well as for its convenient location. Avenida Balboa is the street that connects the two ends of the city and presents a beautiful promenade that allows for an easy escape if you wish to walk all the way to Casco Viejo. It is also convenient for its proximity to the restaurant and clubbing area of Calle Uruguay and to the Multiplaza Mall.

Avenida Balboa, Panama City | © Mariordo (Mario Roberto Durán Ortiz) / WikiCommons


Panama Pacifico is a green and family-friendly neighbourhood located on the other side of the Bridge of the Americas. Cut away from the rest of the city, it feels like a self-sustainable area with beautiful residential developments, international schools, banks, shops and the headquarters of some multinational companies. The Panama Pacifico International Airport is also conveniently located nearby, and operates flights to neighbouring Central and South American countries.

Howard Airport, Panama Pacifico, Panama City | © USAF Photo / WikiCommons

With information of Culture Trip