Best Places to Live in Panama

Panama, nestled strategically between North and South America, is a unique and enticing destination for those seeking a blend of modernity and natural beauty. Panama has varied terrain, including immaculate beaches, lush jungles, and a vibrant metropolitan atmosphere. Colombia borders it to the southeast and Costa Rica to the west.

Not only is Panama safe to visit for tourists, but it also has some fantastic cities that are both welcoming and beautiful to live in. What follows is a quick round-up to help you decide where to settle if you’ve got your eyes on Panama.

Best Places to Live in Panama for…

  1. Expats: Boquete
  2. English Speakers: Panama City
  3. Digital Nomads: Casco Viejo
  4. Solo Travelers: Bocas del Toro
  5. Couples: Coronado
  6. Groups: Pedasi

Top 10 Places to Live in Panama

1. Boquete

Best Place to Live for Expats


Cost of Living: $

Located in Panama’s western highlands lies the little mountain town of Boquete. Boquete has the usual comfort conveniences like supermarkets, pharmacies, restaurants, and banks. However, its green areas and ecotourism are the city’s natural highlights. Boquete is home to rivers, cloud forests, and volcanoes.

Here, towering mountains meet tropical flora, and clouds supply moisture instead of rain. Locals like to explore and take in the vibrant plant and animal life surrounding the region on several paths and tours.

Tip:  A basic understanding of Spanish can enhance day-to-day interactions and cultural immersion.

Who Would Like to Live There: Expats & nature lovers


  • Friendly locals
  • Mouth-watering food
  • Low cost of living


  • Service delivery is slow
  • Traffic congestion
  • Rainy season may lead to temporary road closures and other challenges

2. Panama City

Best Place to Live for English Speakers


Cost of Living: $$$

The largest city in the nation and the second-best location to live in Panama is Panama City, the capital and a major tourist destination for foreigners. The city is a cutting-edge metropolis with the most superb facilities available across the board, including some fabulous coworking spaces.

Along with favorable employment prospects and the most outstanding hospitals in the country, you’ll discover restaurants offering a wide range of international cuisines.

Tip: Be prepared for the relaxed pace of life, or “mañana mentality,” where things may not always happen promptly (hello, procrastinators).

Who Would Like to Live There: Expats & English speakers


  • The cost of living is relatively low
  • Large expat community
  • Efficient and inexpensive public transportation


  • Heavy traffic
  • Humid weather conditions
  • Crowded city spaces

3. Casco Viejo

Best Place to Live for Digital Nomads

Cost of Living: $$$

Panama City’s historic area, Casco Viejo, is often referred to as Casco Antiguo. It’s famous for its vibrant culture, bustling environment, and well-preserved colonial architecture. Casco Viejo is a UNESCO World Heritage Site tucked away on a little peninsula that jets into the Pacific Ocean. Offering a lovely fusion of history and modern life, it contrasts much of Panama City’s futuristic skyline dramatically.

Tip: You will always need cash on hand as card payments tend to be scarce.

Who Would Like to Live There: Digital nomads & history lovers


  • Restaurants and cafés galore
  • Residents enjoy stunning views of the Pacific Ocean.
  • Cultural and entertainment activities abound


  • Heavy tourist crowds
  • Nightlife rowdiness can be an issue
  • High cost of living

4. Bocas del Toro

Best Place to Live for Solo Travelers


Cost of Living: $$$

Bocas del Toro is a region in the Caribbean Sea that includes nine major islands and a tiny mainland, and it is situated northwest of Panama. Bocas del Toro is a party town and a haven for backpackers. Thanks to this, Bocas del Toro features prominently on many lists that highlight the best things to do in Panama.

Isla Colon comes with a staggering number of fully-kitted B&Bs and hostels In Isla Colon’s downtown, skateboards and bicycles are the popular modes of transportation.

Tip: Panamanians are night owls that love to party. If you need to get used to it, this may be too much for you.

Who Would Like to Live There: Solo travelers


  • Coastal destination
  • Relaxed lifestyle
  • Cultural diversity


  • Tropical climate, including heavy rainfall during the rainy season
  • Remoteness complicates movement for those needing frequent travel to the mainland
  • Economic fluctuations and seasonal variations impact job opportunities and business sustainability

5. Coronado

Best Place to Live for Couples


Cost of Living: $$$

The Coronado community may be found in the province of Panama West, specifically in the municipality of Las Lajas. It was built in the 1950s as a weekend getaway for wealthy residents of Panama City. Over time, it has grown into a bustling coastal town with golf courses, restaurants, shops, high-rise condos, and magnificent mansions. There are ample food stores, small clinics, and fully-fledged hospitals.

Tip: Unlike North America, Panama does not have four distinct seasons. There are only two seasons in Panama—the dry and the wet.

Who Would Like to Live There: Expats & Families


  • Beautiful beaches
  • Modern infrastructure
  • Golfing hub


  • High humidity
  • High utility costs
  • High traffic congestion

6. Pedasi

Best Place to Live for Groups


Cost of Living: $

One of the most excellent locations in Panama for foreigners is the beautiful seaside town of Pedasi, which draws more and more attention from visitors. Residents may engage in various events and activities in the neighborhoods, which is friendly. If you’re seeking adventure or sun and beach in Panama, Pedasi is a terrific spot to live!

Tip: The cuisine is one of Pedasi’s most admirable aspects of daily living!  Many popular cuisines, including tacos, ceviche, and the well-known Sancocho, are native to Panama. 

Who Would Like to Live There: Seaside coastal-living lovers


  • Relatively low housing and living expenses
  • Tight-knit and welcoming community
  • Plethora of outdoor activities


  • Scarce basic amenities such as public spaces
  • Limited access to healthcare
  • Language barrier

7.  El Valle de Anton

Best Place to Live for Nature Lovers


Cost of Living: $$$

Panama’s central region is home to El Valle de Anton. The city is encircled by mountains and a cloud forest and is situated in the crater of an extinct volcano. El Valle is a fantastic city for nature enthusiasts, much like Boquete. Numerous accessible hiking routes lead past ridge paths, waterfalls, and canyons.

Tip: In little communities such as El Valle, Panamanians value people who show interest in their customs, embrace their culture, and respect their way of life. 

Who Would Like to Live There: Natur lovers & Outdoor Enthusiasts


  • Varied outdoor activities
  • Vibrant artisan markets
  • Surrounded by mountains, waterfalls, and tropical forests


  • Really busy on weekends
  • Remote location can be limiting for avid big city explorers
  • Underdeveloped infrastructure in some parts

8.  Las Tablas

Best Place to Live for Agriculturalists

Cost of Living: $$

Known for its bright festivals, friendly residents, and traditional Panamanian culture displays, Las Tablas is a picturesque village on Panama’s Azuero Peninsula. In addition to housing, a large hospital, and all of the big-box stores, it acts as the hub of the region.

The town plaza, Parque Belisario Porras, is the beating center of Las Tablas, littered with funky restaurants, cafés, and stores.

Tip: Because Panama lies so near to the equator, the duration of the days varies very little from year to year.  Regardless of the season, the sun sets at around 6.30 pm.

Who Would Like to Live There: Agriculturalists


  • Affordable cost of living
  • Authentic Panamanian experiences
  • Proximity to scenic landscapes and beaches


  • Very little English is spoken
  • Infrastructure limitations in some parts
  • Hot weather conditions

9. David

Best Place to Live for Expats


Cost of Living: $$

David, the country’s fourth-largest city, is home to little over 80,000 people. It’s the provincial capital and heart of western Panama. David, after whom the city was named, is most renowned for his work in healthcare, education, transportation, farming, and the absence of skyscrapers. This is one of the most affordable areas of Panama and a refuge for foreigners seeking a low-key lifestyle.

Tip: Panama faces its fair share of bureaucratic obstacles, like many other nations. When interacting with government offices, patience is essential. 

Who Would Like to Live There: Expats


  • Moderate climate
  • Affordable city to live in
  • Easy access to outdoor activities


  • Limited job opportunities
  • Language barrier
  • Limited nightlife

10. Santa Fe

Best Place to Live for Outdoor Enthusiasts


Cost of Living: $$$

Tucked away in the Panamanian province of Veraguas lies the quaint and serene mountain village of Santa Fe. This charming location, surrounded by breathtaking scenery, waterfalls, and cloud forests, is in the lush, green highlands. Santa Fe offers a distinctive combination of natural beauty and a close-knit community, making it a tranquil haven from the rush of city life.

Tip: Common insects are spiders, ants, and mosquitoes. Since they frequently enter homes, keeping the doors and windows closed at nightfall is critical when the weather allows. 

Who Would Like to Live There: Nature lovers & Outdoor enthusiasts


  • Breathtaking natural scenery
  • Variety of outdoor activities
  • Budget-friendly accommodations


  • Unpredictable climate
  • Language barrier
  • Poor connectivity for remote workers

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