19-hour Layover in Panama City - Need some advice

Old Sep 24th, 2015, 04:29 PM
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19-hour Layover in Panama City - Need some advice

Hi Travel Experts,

In a couple of weeks I will have a 19h layover in Panama City on my way to South America. I will arrive at Panama City at 2:30pm and will leave the next morning at 9:30am. I have done some reading and am interested in seeing the Canal (Miraflores Locks), Casco Viejo and maybe Panama Viejo is time allows. If all goes well, I think I will have from 4-ish/5 to about mid-night to explore the city.

Here are my questions:
1. I think the Miraflores Locks and the museum close at 5pm. Am I correct? If the museum is closed, is there any point for me to go there?
2. If I don't get to see the Locks, then I think I will have plenty of time to visit both Casco Viejo and Panama Viejo. Any other sites to visit in late afternoon, early evening?
3. Where would be a good base to find a hotel or airbnb so I can do some exploring (night market, restaurants, etc) in the evening? Downtown or Casco Viejo?

Thanks very much in advance.
scintor is offline  
Old Sep 24th, 2015, 04:44 PM
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You won't have as much time as you think. Sun starts going down early--probably around 6:15-6:30. So you have maybe 2 hours of daylight by the time you actually get to Panama City from Tocumen. You could hire a cab driver to drive past the ruins of Panama Viejo on the way to Casco Viejo. I'd probably stick to doing your daytime walking around there. You could also grab dinner there.

Downtown Panama City isn't supposed to be a great walking area.
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Old Sep 25th, 2015, 05:28 AM
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You won't have the time for the Miraflores Lock with an arrival at 2.30pm (immigration, taxi, traffic, etc) you will arrive around 4pm in the city center. I would suggest you to stay in the Casco Viejo and enjoy your late afternoon, evening there + an early walk on the Cinta Costera before you leave to the airport at 7am to catch your 9.30am flight. There are also some Airbnb on the avenida Balboa, 20 minutes walk to the Casco Viejo, front of the Cinta Costera for a nice walk.
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Old Sep 25th, 2015, 06:51 AM
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Thank you RAC and Panamatips. Good advice. It makes sense to take it slow and enjoy the evening in one place rather than trying to squeeze too much in. Thanks again.
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