Go Local Panama


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Experience, Understand and Support
Discover the way the local panamanians live, taste, touch, listen and you will get a completely new feel for the country as you discover everyday life here.
Learning about the culture, about what moves the people of Panama and how they live will give you a deeper understanding of the things you see.

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Go Local Panama

  1. 1. Experience Discover the way the locals live. Taste, touch, listen… you will get a completely new feel for the country as you discover everyday life here. Page 3 Understand Learning about the culture, about what moves the people of Panama and how they live will give you a deeper understanding of the things you see. Page 4 Support By getting involved with the local population and buying local products, you are directly supporting the local economy and development. Page 5 Go Local In Panama 5 ways to experience the ways of the locals
  2. 2. 2 Visit the Fish Market A truly local experience in the heart of Panama City The Mercado de Mariscos is the city fish market, open for business to local restaurants and the public every day except the 3rd Monday of each month when it is closed completely for thorough cleaning. It's the best place to buy fresh fish in Panama City - everything from tuna to snapper to lobster to octopus - or ceviche to go from one of the many vendors. It's bustling with energy as local shoppers mingle with tourists to inspect the day’s catch. On the outside of the market you find numerous small stalls selling Ceviche (a Panamanian specialty made with fish cured in lemon juice) and some other typical seafood dishes. Join the crowds for lunch with cup of your favorite type of fresh cold Ceviche or seafood cocktail, or head upstairs to the casual restaurant where you get a variety of typical Panamanian seafood dishes. Take your time to taste the bounty of Panama’s oceans (some scholars even say that the word “Panama” originally meant “abundance of fish”), have a look around, and feel that you have now really arrived in Panama.
  3. 3. 3 Shop Locally Whether you are looking for souvenirs, food or just leisure shopping: buying local is always best. By buying local produce you support the community you are visiting and make sure your money goes to the producers and small vendors. When buying local crafts especially, try to buy them from the artist, to make sure the craftsman gets a fair price. Buy indigenous crafts only from indigenous vendors. Try something new Have you tried a local snack yet? Get some local fruit, maybe even something you’ve never had before. Or how about a Panamanian beverage? There are four types of national beers to be tried, and a variety of freh fruit bevereages (chicha) are available almost everywhere. Especially in Panama City, you will find many street vendors selling little snacks: give them a try! Local crafts There is a variety of local crafts you can find in Panama: The Kuna Women from San Blas sell their brightly colored Mola (a type of Patchwork), the Embera culture is renowned for their craving and basket weaving skills, and in addition to that you can find everything from wood carving to jewelry. Do not forget the most typical of all: A well crafted Panama hat. D
  4. 4. 4 Visit a folklore show Folklore dance performances and traditional shows can be visited in Panama City. See the skilled dancers in traditional dress perform a variety of folklore Meet the indigenous people There are seven distinct indigenous cultures present in Panama, who have their own traditions and largely maintain a traditional way of life. Visit the Embera on the banks of Chagres river to learn about their tradtions, or travel to San Blas archipelago to get a glimpse of the traditional Kuna lifestyle. From Saint’s days to village fairs, there are many celebrations throughout the year. Find out if there is one happening whiele you are here! Witness a local celebration Get immersed in the culture Discover the culture and traditions of Panama. The country is a melting pot of different cultures, where Indigenous, Afro-Antillean, Spanish and American influences mingle and mix, which leads to a colorful and diverse folklore, traditions and local celebrations. Discover the people of Panama through their cultural heritage! B
  5. 5. 5 Visiting a sustainable farm to see how local produce is made gives you a great way to experience the local lifestyle outside the city, and you get the chance to buy some great products directly from the source! In the highlands of Boquete, some of the best coffee in the world is grown. The fresh mountain climate makes your walk through the plantation a pleasant excursion as you see, smell and taste the secrets of the black beans. Coffee Head for the Bocas del Toro Archipelago to discover how chocolate is grown and produced. Learn about the mythology and secret powers the indigenous tribes attributed to the cocoa plants, and learn to see this delicious treat as more than just a sweet… Chocolate See a farm
  6. 6. Hear the sound of Panama Panama has a rich and diverse music history, and important contributions to Cumbia, Saloma, Pasillo, Punta, Tamborito, Mejorana, Bolero, Jazz, Salsa, Reggae, Calypso, Rock and other musical genres. Discover some of Panama’s popular musicians, and hear the rhythms that move Panamanians. Danilo Perez is one of the best Jazz composers of contemporary times, and the founder of the Panama Jazz festival. The Pianist and Singer is an Icon of Panamanian Jazz. Carlos Mendes began his career as an acoustic independent singer in bars and clubs around Panama. His mellow songs stir up the feeling of the long tropical nights of Panama. Ruben Blades, born July 16, 1948, is notably the most renowned musician that has Panama has ever had. His hit "Patria" has probably been the song that has touched the nationalism of all Panamanians and people of all nationalities. Cinefue combines elements of traditional folk music with modern rock and independent sounds. Additionally, you will find many life musicians in Panama city, in bars as well as in the countless festivals and ferias around the city. So lean back, and discover your favorite Panamanian sound.