Popular Destinations for Americans & Canadians Moving to Panama
Panama has a number of popular destinations for expats relocating there. Whether you are looking for a permanent home, a second home, or an investment, there are a wide variety of locations to check out. We recommend taking a trip to explore towns that may be of interest to you.
The StartAbroad Panama Guide
Visa, residency, and citizenship options for expats moving to Panama
Tax outlook for expats moving to Panama
Popular destinations for expats moving to Panama
What expats need to know about real estate when moving to Panama
Shipping, car purchase, and pet relocation for expats moving to Panama
Top Destinations for Expats Moving to Panama
Panama City & Surrounds
The capital city, on Panama Bay on the Pacific Coast, with the best of everything you could want, from healthcare facilities to restaurants to shopping. Popular suburbs for expats include El Cangrejo, Punta Paitilla, and Punta Pacific.
A beach town roughly sixty minutes south of Panama City on the Pacific Coast, with volcanic sand, great surfing, and plenty of amenities. With a large expat community, English is widely spoken.
A tranquil island of 2,000 inhabitants located about thirty minutes from Panama City by ferry, Taboga Island features great whale watching, a decent number of restaurants and bars, and a relaxed island life. It's close to Panama City, but more affordable than city life.
Boquete is a lush mountain town of roughly 20,000 with a mild climate ranging from 70-80°F during the day. It's located only 60 kilometers from the Costa Rican border and has a large and lively expat community.
David is a large city in Panama that's known for its affordability, family-friendliness, and offers Panama's second international airport. It's located in the highlands and therefore has a milder climate than Panama City and beach towns.
Volcan is similar to Boquete, but is much smaller and is located on the other side of the same mountain. Given that Volcan is less 'discovered,' it is also cheaper than Boquete while still offering a good selection of restaurants, bars, and supermarkets.
Bocas del Toro
Part mainland and part archipelago, Bocas del Toro features hundreds of islands, including the largest - Isla Colon. Bocas del Toro is on the Caribbean side of Northwest Panama, a one-hour flight from Panama City and fairly remote. Here you can find beautiful beaches, turquoise waters, and lush rainforests.
Central Panama and the Azuero Peninsula
Las Tablas is a beach town located on the Azuero Peninsula that's known as a cultural hotspot. It's particularly famous for its annual Carnival celebrations. With a small population of 9,000, Las Tablas is also quite safe.
Three and a half hours from Panama City on the Azuero Peninsula, Chitré is the capital of Herrera Province. There are fewer expats here, but plenty of amenities like supermarkets, banks, and restaurants. Cost of living is low and the culture is a bit more relaxed than other cities.
Valle de Antón (El Valle)
El Valle is located a two-hour drive from Panama City in the central highlands. It's a small town with fewer amenities than other expat hotspots, has a large indigenous community, and provides a great mix of culture. El Valle is affordable, has a cool climate due to its high elevation, and offers access to eco-tourism activities.
An authentic Panamanian town in the highlands of Veraguas, Santa Fe is known for its coffee, its great climate, and outdoor activities. There's a low cost of living here compared to other expat hotspots in Panama.