Safety

Most of the city is safe for walking, even at night, especially El Cangrejo, the Area Bancária, the Casco Viejo, and Paitilla, where the bulk of the city's hotels and restaurants are located. The Avenida Central pedestrian mall is safe by day, but after dark don’t wander west of Calle 10, or Plaza Herrera. Even during the day you should leave most valuables and money in your hotel safe. At night you should travel to and from the Casco Viejo only by taxi or rental car, but by day walking there from Plaza Cinco de Mayo on Avenida Central is fine. The increasing gentrification of the Casco Viejo, as well as the presence of police in the neighborhood, have made this area safe both by day and night, making it one of the most popular places to dine and go bar hopping. If you're on foot and feel any apprehension about where you've ended up, flag down the first taxi, even if it has another passenger in it, and go someplace you know is safe. Between 11 am and 3 pm, the heat is usually oppressive, so serious strolling should be limited to the morning and evening hours. Areas that should be avoided are El Chorrillo and Santa Ana, just west of the Casco Viejo (although guided tours are safe); the southwestern half of Calidonia, including Avenida Balboa west of the Balboa Monument; and Curundú, just to the west of Caledonia.

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