Panama’s size can be deceptive. In a tiny territory about the size of South Carolina you’ll find tremendous diversity. From the sultry Caribbean with its turquoise waters to the palm-lined beaches of the Pacific…
When I first saw Boquete, all I could think was “wow.” At the entrance to town, there’s an unassuming visitor’s center, where I stopped for coffee. Hot java in hand, I went out back to the mirador, or viewing terrace...
It’s late afternoon, and the surfers are making their way on to the shore. I’ve been working and enjoying the view from under a restaurant’s thatched roof.
Colorful birds swoop in and out of the trees of the rainforest landscape. Combined with a blue sky, it makes a soothing palette—perfect for days that flow like honey, slow and sweet. We sit on the large terrace, sipping wine and chatting about life in small, sleepy El Valle, Panama.
I’m sitting at a pub eating proper U.K.-style fish and chips, sipping a local microbrew, and watching the beautiful people (and cars) go by. This is Panama City, so it’s lovely and warm. It was clear skies all afternoon so, as soon as the clock hit 5 p.m., I headed out for a bit of sun and social time.
Earlier this evening I walked across a plaza to meet a friend. There was an elegantly outfitted brass band playing for a group of dignitaries. The centuries-old Hotel Central—newly restored to its former glory—was the perfect backdrop. Locals hung out in the gazebo and on benches around the plaza, enjoying the impromptu show.
I wake up to the sound of birds, the sun shining through the windows that line my bedroom. It has become my habit to get up and throw open the front door before doing anything else. All day long that door stays open, the terrace outside seamlessly flowing into the interior of my wood cabin.
Today, the best restaurants in Panama City aren’t necessarily the fanciest (and the most pretentious tend to have impressive “barks” but may fail to deliver when it comes time to bite).
With an impressive skyline that glistens in the midday sun, Panama's capital looks modern and sophisticated. It's not uncommon for me to hear visitors comparing it to other cosmopolitan destinations like London or New York. Of course, with a population of just under 2 million, Panama City is much smaller.
I'm in the City of Knowledge, a large "technopark" in Panama's capital. It's much like a business park, but the offices here mostly belong to NGOs and educational institutions. This is a place for innovation and forward thinking...and its small theater is the venue for this year's Panama Jazz Festival.