We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Best Hotel for My Family Visit

South Carver...
7 posts
Best Hotel for My Family Visit

Hello. I am planning a trip to Panama City with my family (age range 30s-60s). I am in the early stages of researching and hoping someone can point me in right direction. The older people in my family are originally from Panama and speak Spanish and we plan to stay for a week, if it matters.

I would like to rent a hotel or property that is in a safe area, of course. I would prefer to be in an area within walking distance of restaurants, dance clubs, and shopping. Being near a beach is low priority and would prefer to see interesting places where people are out and about. Id like for my family to be able to walk around and go eat or go listen to music.

Whats the best area to look into?

Panama City, Panama
Level Contributor
21,089 posts
27 reviews
1. Re: Best Hotel for My Family Visit

Are you thinking of being in the city ? Or a smaller town ?

In the city, the Casco Antiguo is safe and interesting but not so easy to get in and out. El Cangrejo is a central base but nothing of history.

Edited: 23 July 2017, 01:37
Atlanta, Georgia...
Destination Expert
for Colon, Isla Grande, Portobelo
Level Contributor
5,895 posts
24 reviews
2. Re: Best Hotel for My Family Visit

El Cangrejo has some good, moderately priced hotels (Hotel Milan, Toscana Inn, Torres de Alba) and it has a lot of good restaurants. All are within walking distance. There are also clubs and casinos in the area. As beardo commented, it's a very central location, easy to get taxis and easy to walk around.

South Carver...
7 posts
3. Re: Best Hotel for My Family Visit

Thanks for replying. Im not really looking for small town. I just want to be in an area where we can leave our hotel and be among the locals eating, shopping and just hanging out. Not too interested in historical sights. Ive been seeing a lot of El Cangrejo, which may be what im looking for.

How far is el Cangrejo from the major malls? Or from the beach?

Another consideration is that we plan to visit with relatives who live in the poorer side of Panama City within city limits. They will have to travel to meet us so we dont want to be too far away for them to come to us. Im not exactly sure where they live but im told Calidonia is nearby, if that helps.

Thanks beardo and gb williams for your attention.

Panama City, Panama
Level Contributor
21,089 posts
27 reviews
4. Re: Best Hotel for My Family Visit

Calidonia is very central - it is between the Casco Antiguo and Obarrio and El Cangrejo.

Also El Cangrejo is on the metro which is easy and cheap to use.

The biggest mall is Albrook. That is also on the metro. Taxis in the city are not expensive.

There are no beaches in the city - you are really talking of a journey of a couple of hours to get to reasonable beaches.

Edited: 24 July 2017, 02:52
South Carver...
7 posts
5. Re: Best Hotel for My Family Visit

Thank you guys

Panama City, Panama
Level Contributor
1 post
8 reviews
6. Re: Best Hotel for My Family Visit

I'd steer you towards Casco Antiguo (also often called Casco Viejo, not to be confused with Panama Viejo). Casco Antiguo has lots of historic buildings, with architecture and original roads and walls dating back hundreds of years. It's also become THE hotspot where there are several restaurant, hotel, hostel, and apartment options. There is no mall, and there are better areas for shopping, but you're only a $4 to $7 Uber away from the huge Albrook mall or the very large and luxurious Multiplaza Pacific mall. Also, Casco Antiguo is close to your family in Calidonia. El Cangrejo is fairly close to Calidonia as well, but as a Canadian living in Panama for almost 10 years, I basically stopped going to El Cangrejo about 5 years ago, the shopping is mediocre, there's no proper mall, and it's far less interesting for restaurants, nightlife, whatever.

Remember, Panama City is relatively small. Often, the areas mentioned like Casco Antiguo, El Cangrejo, Bella Vista, Calidonia, Marbella, Obarrio and Punta Pacifica seem like they're worlds apart with many different personalities, but are separated by less than a leisurely 20 minute walk or a $3 Uber. When you're planning things, try putting some sample start and end destinations in Google Maps, and you'll see that it's pretty close together for the most part.

When considering where to stay in Casco Viejo, note it gets very lively at night, especially Thursday, Friday, and Saturday. You might want to make sure your room(s) are located a little bit away from the action, or you could be in for some beats until 4am on weekends.

Enjoy your trip!

Atlanta, Georgia...
Destination Expert
for Colon, Isla Grande, Portobelo
Level Contributor
5,895 posts
24 reviews
7. Re: Best Hotel for My Family Visit

The best way to be away from the noise (or "action") in Casco Viejo is to stay in Marbella, El Cangrejo, Orbario or the financial district. Keep in mind that taxi (and Uber) fares increase from daytime to nighttime. And the later at night, the more they cost.

Also, be aware that to go to the largest mall -- which is not Multiplaza but Albrook -- the cost of the Metro is the same, whether you are getting on at Iglesia del Carmen or Cinco de Mayo. The difference is that there is no Metro stop in Casco Viejo. Cinco de Mayo -- the closest -- is outside Casco Viejo in Santa Ana district, which is not very safe, especially after dark.

El Cangrejo has some excellent restaurants within walking distance, and most are not nearly as expensive as those in Casco Viejo.

South Carver...
7 posts
8. Re: Best Hotel for My Family Visit

Thank you so much for your ideas. Ive actually since learned that my relatives live in Curundu ( yeah i kniw its not a great place, and we dont plan to visit there!!!) but i imagine that if we stay near the city vs the beach, it shouldnt be difficult for them to come to us.

Panama City, Panama
Level Contributor
21,089 posts
27 reviews
9. Re: Best Hotel for My Family Visit

Curundu lies between the downtown (including El Cangrejo) and Albrook.

It's all fairly central.

10. Re: Best Hotel for My Family Visit

-:- Message from TripAdvisor staff -:-

This topic has been closed to new posts due to inactivity. We hope you'll join the conversation by posting to an open topic or starting a new one.

To review the TripAdvisor Forums Posting Guidelines, please follow this link: http://www.tripadvisor.com/pages/forums_posting_guidelines.html

We remove posts that do not follow our posting guidelines, and we reserve the right to remove any post for any reason.

Removed on: 28 July 2018, 14:17