Condado del Rey, Panama, WRITTEN Report

Condado del Rey—One Of The Nicest Panama City Neighborhoods You’ve Probably Never Heard Of

I’m asked almost daily, either through email or comments on the blog or site, where I think the best place in Panama is for a foreigner to start his or her new life. There’s no one answer to that question and usually I respond with a few questions of my own. First, when making this kind of decision, I can’t stress enough that you need to visit this country and check out some of the areas you’re considering before taking the plunge.

So many times people think they know where they want to live, just from seeing the beautiful photos tossed around online or reading reports such as this one. One expat couple I met told me how they came here sure they were going to move to Bocas del Toro. They were absolutely, 100% positive this would be the place for them. They visited Bocas and were shocked. It wasn’t what they imagined. They’d based their entire moving overseas plan on Bocas del Toro. So what now? 

They ended up spending a week here driving back and forth from one town to the next, trying to find the place that made sense for them…and the scary thing was…they weren’t feeling it at any place. They just didn’t have that moment where they thought, “This is it. This is the place for me.” On their last day here, someone mentioned they should check out Pedasi. They took a trip out there to the sleepy beach town and instantly fell in love. And that’s where they eventually settled down. 

There’s a place for every person in Panama. But each person needs to come here and feel that gut feeling about a place. 

What three questions do I always ask before trying to help people decide what place in Panama might be best for them? 

1: Do you want to live in Panama City or a smaller city? Or are you imagining your new lifestyle being somewhere on or near a beach or high in the mountains? Panama has a little bit of everything, but you need to have some idea what lifestyle option you’re shooting for. The good news is, here in Panama, you can live on the beach and be super close to the mountains and Panama City.

2: Do you want to live near other foreigners? Is a life surrounded by like-minded expats what you’re looking for? Or do you want to be in a smaller town with only local Panamanians around? 

3: What kind of budget are you playing with? There are extremely affordable places to live in Panama and there are some that would easily rival some of the most expensive parts of the United States, Canada, the U.K., Venezuela, etc.   

I’m mentioning all this because I’ve written a couple of times in blog posts about how I miss certain restaurants and stores from the United States. I love Panama and I don’t want it to become just another U.S. However, I do start to get homesick every once in awhile, so I admit that I get a little bit excited when I see a Papa Johns or a Carls Jr. pop up somewhere. When I write this, I always get a little bit of feedback from the expats not wanting this stuff to come to Panama. Some people have moved here to get away from the commercialized U.S. They love not seeing a McDonald’s anywhere near their small town. 

Condado del Rey, the subject of this PFR Location Report is not a cut off, small-town lifestyle. It’s a serene and tidy neighborhood on the outskirts of Panama City, but with modern shopping centers and lots of restaurants, many of which you’ll be very familiar with. This isn’t the place to move to if you want to escape everything that reminds you of home…wherever that may be. 

Where is Condado del Rey? 

If you’ve headed out to the interior of Panama, over the Centennial Bridge (remember there are 2 bridges that take you out of the city, the other is the Bridge of the Americas), you’ve definitely passed Condado del Rey, but you probably had no idea. Just before escaping the city, you see the brand new Centennial Plaza on the right hand side, with recognizable haunts like Taco Bell, KFC, McDonald’s, Papa Johns, Pizza Hut, and Dairy Queen. Technically, that plaza is in Cerro Patacon, but with a side street that leads to the tucked away, somewhat hidden neighborhood of Condado del Rey, I consider these two areas one and the same.

Condado del Rey map

To get to Condado del Rey, you can either take Avenida Ricardo J. Alfaro, better known to locals as Tumbo Muerto, until you get to the corner where the brand new Hewlett Packard (HP) building is. You turn right at that light and enter the neighborhood. If you’d kept going straight on Tumbo Muerto, and turned right to head up onto the street that takes you towards the Centennial Bridge and to the interior, you’d pass the new Centennial Plaza. The first street on the right, between the plaza and the gas station also takes you into the neighborhood.

Turn right at the next light

Once you enter Condado del Rey, you find a world full of gated communities, both single-family homes and towering condo buildings. Deeper into the area you’ll find single-family homes that aren’t inside of gated communities, but even these homes seem heavily guarded as police cruisers constantly lap the neighborhood, making sure all is in order.

What’s this place all about? 

Call me crazy, but something about Condado del Rey reminds me of San Diego, California. I think it’s just the rolling hills that surround the community. The only thing missing is the beach, since Condado del Rey isn’t right on the water. Then again, most parts of San Diego aren’t right on the water. And just like with its Californian cousin, the ocean is just a short drive away.

Like a little San Diego in Panama

When you first enter Condado del Rey, from either direction, you’ll see a lot of construction going on. One of the greatest things about the area is the opportunity that still exists. You’ll see rental space available in nearly all of the shopping plazas and new office buildings, plus new ones are being built constantly. 

New construction and new opportunity

On Tumbo Muerto, near the entrance to Condado del Rey, I just saw the sign go up for a new Dunkin Donuts, and a Carls Jr. is on its way too. With most of the units next to these restaurants still vacant, who knows what might show up next. And if you’ve got ideas to start a business, finding a location won’t be a problem.

Plenty of housing in Condado del Rey

Same goes for housing. New condos are going up all over the place and there’s still availability in the ones already built.

Live in an apartment/condo building 

I said at the start of the Condado del Rey video, and at the beginning of this article, that this is one of the nicest Panama City neighborhoods you’ve probably never heard of. I think that’s an accurate assessment as Condado del Rey is no horded secret, but it’s definitely not mentioned as often as tourist and relocation hotspots like Coronado, Boquete, and El Valle de Anton. When people mention places to live in the city you usually hear El Cangrejo, Marbella, Punta Pacifica, and then on the outskirts you’ll probably hear Costa del Este, which I even reported on in an earlier PFR Location Report. But it’s rare that you’ll hear someone mention living in Condado del Rey. 

This isn’t a place that’s mentioned all over the Internet. To hear about Condado del Rey, you need to be here in Panama, with your feet on the ground and your ears open to public conversation because Panamanians know about it, and many are calling the place home. 

Or in a single-family home

My daughter just told me the other day that two of her friends live in Condado del Rey. One is a Panamanian friend and the other is a Venezuelan friend. I have a Venezuelan friend living in the area and I know at least one American living in the area. It seems to be a place where a perfect blend of middle to upper income foreigners and Panamanians are living.

A luxurious home in Condado del Rey

The streets are clean, other than at the beginning of the neighborhood, where there’s a lot of construction going on and lots of garbage strewn across the ground. As you get deeper into the neighborhood, you don’t see that garbage. The hedges are trimmed, the grass is mowed, and it’s common to see workers tidying up the place.

Workers keep the area looking nice and clean

Most of the neighborhoods in Condado del Rey consist of single-family homes. The ones lining the streets of the neighborhood back behind the main drag range from common houses to huge and extravagant ones. You’ll also see a variety of private communities with secure entryways. Even the condos in the area come with guarded entryways, where visitors can’t even enter the parking lot without authorization.

Safe and secure neighborhoods

In most of these private communities, both the homes and the condos, you’ll find swimming pools, tennis courts, gyms, and playgrounds. People walk the neighborhoods trying to stay in shape, or walk their dogs. It’s the type of lifestyle you may be used to in whatever country you’re from.

Gated communities with guarded entryways

Like in Costa del Este, I don’t imagine a person would be hit with that culture shock some might experience when moving to one of Panama’s smaller towns with narrow streets, locals who all seem to know each other, and shopping done in small mini-supers. This is a bigger world tucked into a small container.

New Yorkers should be able to appreciate these stoops

The electricity, like anywhere else in Panama City, is as reliable as Panama electricity can be. I’m sure that from time to time you’ll experience power dips and outages while power lines are being worked on.  That happens in any part of the city. Water is drinkable from the tap.

A local cell phone provider

Internet is high-speed, you can get cable TV with many English channels or go with satellite TV, and Smart Phone/Blackberry service is reliable. Since most of the homes in the area are within gated communities, you can expect to pay maintenance/HOA fees, which will vary with each neighborhood.

Getting things done 

You can accomplish most things you’ll need without having to leave Condado del Rey. I saw branches for most banks right in town, all with ATM machines, so getting access to your cash won’t be a problem. I saw two Banco Generals, a Multibank, BAC, Global Bank, St. Georges Bank, Scotiabank, and many more.

BAC bank in Condado del Rey

Finding a good florist in Panama City has never been an easy task, but I did see a florist in Condado del Rey.

A local florist

And there’s definitely no shortage of laundry centers and drycleaners. It seems the going rate for having your clothes ironed (plancha in Spanish) is $.50 as signs hanging in most windows announced the special price. I’m not sure how that compares with what you may be used to back home.

You’ll have no problem getting your laundry done

Computer repair centers, an office supply store, and even a Mailboxes Etc. are located in Condado del Rey. This means you can set yourself up with a Miami mailing address and pick your mail and packages up right in Condado del Rey.

Get your mail and packages here

I even saw a relocation center. I don’t know anything about the place, so you’ll need to do your due diligence, but here’s the front of their office with the contact info.

Relocation services

I didn’t see a school in Condado del Rey, but I did see school buses making their way around the neighborhood. And with Albrook and Clayton nearby, both with some of the area’s best schools, it would be easy to send your kids to one of these schools. I did see a math specialization class, a modeling class, and a sign for a preschool. 

A neighborhood preschool

This is also an area full of some of the city’s best universities. You’ll find Universidad Tecnologica de Panama near the Centennial Plaza, and right around the corner from Condado del Rey, you’ll find Santa Maria la Antigua and Universidad Latina.

Universidad Latina

Barber shops, beauty salons, and spas are everywhere, and I mean EVERYWHERE. I don’t know how any of them make money. Make sure you watch our Condado del Rey video to see what I’m talking about. It’s nuts.

Even body waxing?

One of the great things about Condado del Rey is its close proximity to downtown Panama City and its excellent, top-notch hospitals there. But who wants to drive to downtown Panama City for every doctor visit? In Condado del Rey, you won’t have to. I saw several clinics, and not just the regular general practice doctors either.

No need to travel to downtown Panama City to see a doctor

I saw hand and foot specialists, orthodontists and dentists, laboratories, optical clinics, and plenty of pharmacies.

One of several dental and orthodontic clinics

You’ll even find several places to take your pet for medical attention. I love this Vet clinic in the photo below that’s shaped like a giant dog. In addition to this place, you’ll find two Melo pet clinics and pet supply stores, plus an American Pets store.

Who wouldn’t take their dog to this place?

With three major supermarkets in the area (Rey, Super 99, and Xtra) grocery shopping is a breeze. And these are some of the nicest supermarkets around. The Rey at Centennial Plaza has huge, wide open aisles. The store is gigantic. I actually felt a little bit overwhelmed the one time I went grocery shopping there. With Super 99 and Xtra in the area, you have the ability to pick up groceries at a bargain, as Xtra is considered one of the least expensive supermarkets in Panama.

The new Xtra on Tumbo Muerto, just outside of Condado del Rey

Plus, with mini-supers and fruterias all over the place, you should never be forced to leave Condado del Rey just to pick up some groceries. You’ll even find a fresh market in the area, where you can pick up everything from tomatoes and garlic to mangoes and papaya.

The Condado del Rey fresh market

The nearest mall would be in El Dorado, but with the Corredor Norte so close, driving to the major indoor mall at Albrook or even Metromall way on the opposite end of the corridor, would be very easy.

A cool little gift shop

Shopping in the town itself consists of mostly small boutique clothing stores and party supply stores. You’ll even find a couple of stores that focus on selling work uniforms, like medical scrubs, and a business supply store.

A store that specializes in work uniforms

Panafoto, an electronic store is located in the Centennial Plaza. At the entrance to Condado del Rey, you’ll find a Discovery Center store, which is one of my favorite places to shop in Panama. I’d say that it’s the closest thing you’ll find to a Walmart here.

Panama’s closest thing to a Walmart

You’ll also find just about anything you need to build a home or maintain one. At Casa de Meteriales you’ll find construction materials, plus the Do it Center, which is like a mini-Home Depot is located in the Centennial Plaza. At Lumicentro you’ll find lighting and ceiling fans, plus Condado del Rey is home to many specialized curtain, flooring, bathroom and kitchen, and hardware stores. You’ll find at least two paint stores in town as well.

Rey (supermarket), Do it Center (like Home Depot), and Panafoto (electronics)

And if you’re in need of some new wheels, you’ll find a bicycle shop, a scooter store, and even a Kia dealership. So buying a new ride, of almost any sort, can be accomplished without even leaving Condado del Rey. Then, once you have your new ride, you’ll find two gas stations, a car wash, and even a tire center right there in town. 

You’ll even find a bike shop in Condado del Rey

If you just want to make some extra cash and you’re legal to work here in Panama, you’ll find two employers that are usually eager to hire English-speaking employees. Both of these places are on the corners as you enter Condado del Rey. Hewlett Packard is usually looking for English-speaking phone techs and customer service professionals. Sitel, which is one of the major call centers here, is also usually looking for customer service representatives, collection experts, and sales gurus.

Easy, but tedious employment for English-speaking professionals

If you’re someone who loves to stay fit, you’ll find that Condado del Rey is a great place for an active lifestyle. It’s an easy place to walk around, unlike most of Panama City. The sidewalks are great. Plus, this place is home to several exercise centers. I saw martial arts studios, crossfit, and other gyms.

Crossfit is here

You’ll even find a ballet studio and other dance classes in Condado del Rey.

The local ballet academy

When it comes to getting things done in Condado del Rey, most things can be taken care of in town. This is a very self sufficient community, but with Panama City encircling this tiny town, the opportunity to get out and find new shopping, new restaurants, and all other sorts of places to make your new life easier, is just around the corner. 

What’s there to do in Condado del Rey?

You won’t find much in the way of entertainment in Condado del Rey.  Playgrounds, basketball courts, and soccer fields are some of the things you’ll find in the area. If you’re planning a kid’s birthday party, you’ll find at least three party salons.

A fun place for the kids

Plus, a really cool science and art center for the kids is located in Condado del Rey. It’s called Explora and it’s a place a lot of the schools in the area frequent for field trips.

The Explora Center of Science and Art

If you crave a great and hoppin’ nightlife, you won’t find one in Condado del Rey, but remember, you’re very close to downtown Panama City and it’s great nightlife, bars, restaurants, and movie theaters. In Condado del Rey, you’ll mostly find restaurants, some with bars, but no major discos and nightclubs.

The coolest hangout in Condado del Rey

PesKito has probably the hottest nightlife scene. The place is always packed on the weekend as it has a cool bar & grill kind of vibe, plus it has a huge outdoor patio area where people like to hang out, listen to music, and drink beer. You’ll also see people make their way over to the few small outdoor dining spots that line the road next to the PesKito parking lot.

A late night snack spot

Condado del Rey is close to El Dorado, an area that has a couple of casinos and nightclubs. I hung out with some friends one night at the PesKito for a couple of hours. When we got bored we just made our way over to one of the casinos in El Dorado.

A sushi restaurant right above a smoothie and wrap shop

As far as restaurants go, you’ll find just about every kind of cuisine you can think of in Condado del Rey. Chinese food, Creole, Venezuelan, Mexican, Italian, and of course, Panamanian. Plus, chicken wings, pizza, sushi, delis, and several fast food chains you’re sure to be familiar with.

Some familiar faces

If you like sweet treats, Condado del Rey is home to several frozen yogurt restaurants, a smoothie and wrap place, an ice cream shop, and even a bakery that specializes in cookies and cakes.

Condado del Rey is home to at least 3 ice cream and frozen yogurt shops

And if you just want to chill out and unwind with a cup of coffee, I saw several cafes in town, including the one in the picture below, which is located in the Centennial Plaza.

A chill place to caffeinate

And with Momi, a popular bakery nearby, and even a McCafe now inside of the McDonald’s, stopping for a quick snack while running errands is easier than ever.

The downsides

I’m not sure that I’d call any of Condado del Rey’s downsides real flaws. They’re just things you’ll need to get used to. For example, I hate the fact that when leaving the area, you can’t just simply make a left turn (if you need to head in that direction). Cones block the left turn, meaning you’ll have to turn right at the exit, then make your way into a jug-handle like turn, then a second turn, just to head in the opposite direction. It’s kind of a pain, especially at times of high-traffic. But it’s not something that would stop me from living in the area.

These darn cones prevent you from turning left when leaving the area

You’ll find speed bumps all over the place in Condado del Rey, but then again, speed bumps are a good thing, and these ones are more rounded and smooth than some of the others you might see in Panama City, making them easier on your car.

Typical traffic getting into and out of the area

The worst thing about Condado del Rey is the traffic getting into and out of the area. During rush our it’s a nightmare. Traffic anywhere in Panama City is horrible during rush hour. So as long as you plan your trips out of the area wisely, you’ll be fine. Plus, Condado del Rey has almost everything you’d need, right there in the community, so you may not even need to leave all that often.

What does it cost to live there? 

I did some research on the area and what I found is that single-family homes seem to start at around $250,000 and rent for around $1,700 per month and up. The condos, 2 bedroom, start at around $130,000 and rent for as low as $1,000 per month. I found one rental unit for $900, but the majority seemed to be around the $1,200 per month range. I set the rent in the budget you see below at $1,000 because I did see several in that price range. 

I like to compare Condado del Rey to Costa del Este, because to me the two areas are very similar. Costa del Este is a little bit nicer and most places have incredible views of the ocean, but Condado del Rey is a very close 2nd as far as comfortable living goes and it’s a little more affordable. I set the food costs in Condado del Rey at $350 per month (was $400 in Costa del Este) because unlike in Costa del Este, in Condado del Rey you have the option to shop at the new Xtra supermarket (an affordable shopping alternative) and the Super 99. 

Take a look at the budget I put together below, and remember, every person’s lifestyle is different. You might run your air conditioner all day long and see the electricity bill skyrocket and you might not travel at all, saving money in that area. You might not go out to eat often and might not spend any money at all on entertainment. If you want a maid or a gardener, you’d obviously need to tack on the price for those services. This budget should give you a fair, average estimate. You can play around with the numbers to match your needs. 

Monthly budget for a couple living in Condado del Rey, Panama (City)

Rent2 bedroom condo, houses start at about $1,700$1,000
ElectricityAC can make this higher if you're not careful$250
GasFor cooking and dryer (2 small tanks)$10
Telephone/Internet/CablePackage deal$45
Phone card for calling the U.S. (if you don't use Skype/MagicJack)Telechip International, for 5 hours talk time$5
FoodFor 2 people$350
Entertainment Most of this cost would come from dining out as there's not a lot else to do in the area$200
Routine Doctor VisitOnce per month for each person ($25 each)$50
MedicationVaries, but for my monthly high blood pressure and diabetes meds this is what I'd pay just to give you an idea$45
Getting around townBuses and taxis$20
Travel outside of town By bus$40
ExtrasOther things you may need$50
Total Monthly ExpensesFor 2 people$2,065

My overall gut 

I’m no real estate expert or financial forecaster, but I honestly think Condado del Rey is on the fast track to being one of the hottest places to be in or around Panama City. There’s just so much opportunity and with its close proximity to the Corredor Norte, getting to the Albrook Mall or to downtown Panama City would be easy. 

Plus, living in Condado del Rey puts you right at the beginning of the trail that leads to the Centennial Bridge and to the country’s interior, so if you have the desire to ditch the city for a weekend, you’re well on your way already. 

Traffic getting to Condado del Rey and out of the area would be my biggest concern. It’s nasty at most hours of the day. This is something you need to understand before moving there. As someone who spends probably a third of his day in Panama City traffic, trust me when I tell you it’s nothing to take lightly. It’s very frustrating. That said, Condado del Rey literally has almost everything you’d need, so unless you work outside of the area, you might not need to leave often. Just limit your excursions to the off-hours. Don’t plan trips during rush hour traffic.

You can almost walk to the Immigration building

Even the immigration building is just around the corner, so if you need to run out and take care of your paperwork, you can do that easily. 

My overall assessment of Condado del Rey is that it’s a perfect medium for someone who is ready to leave the United States or whatever country he or she is coming from, but who maybe isn’t ready for the small-town life or the hectic hustle and bustle of the big city. If you’re looking for something that would be comparable to a nice suburb, this could be the place for you.

Thanks for reading, and don’t forget to check out the Condado del Rey VIDEO report here.  

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15 Responsesso far.

  1. Carolel, Atlanta, GA says:

    Hey Chris… Great job on website. Thanks for your in-depth reporting and down to earth critique. Visited Panama Costa rica last year and on my way to visit Gamboa my taxi driver stopped to get gas in Condado Del Rey & gave us the 411. He was saving to buy a home there & highly recommended it. We were impressed immediately 7 have been researching real estate there for retirement. I have always lived in or close to large cities but could not afford downtown, PC so the closeness to PC really attracted me as I have a busy social life. Yu are right about healthcare. Far exceeds US standards in many ways, costs and level of service. They do accept all US insurance FYI even Medicare & Medicaid. I am in healthcare so good healthcare is at the top of my list. I am a CDE (Certified Diabetes Educator) so I am happy to hear you are able to keep up with your diabetes care in a cost efficient manner. I won’t be working when I retire but do plan to volunteer my services to patients with diabetes 1-2 times a week. Maybe our paths may cross one day. Stay healthy and keep up the good job you do as our ambassador for the US possey. Carole

    • Chris says:

      Hi Carolel,

      Wow, I’m so glad to hear you had a good trip. I’ve been looking at Condoado del Rey a lot myself lately. My only concern is some of the flooding the area has experienced recently so I’d be careful about moving to the center, downhill area. Being on higher ground would be fine. Thanks so much for your comment!


  2. Heena says:

    Hi there,

    Great report! Just pointing out that there is a school in Condado del Rey called Colegio Real, they offer from pre-school to high-school. There are as many small kindergartens and daycares around. I live here and it is indeed a lovely neighborhood!

  3. Rafael says:

    Hey man!, I’ve been doing some research about different living options in Panama and stumbled upon you blog. Actually I became interested in Condado Del Rey because HP’s HQ in Panama is based there and I’m and HP employee (in Venezuela) evaluating a possible relocation there.

    Since this report has a bit of time now, I wanted to ask your advice in a couple of things:

    1- I’ve read about many security concerns about San Miguelito District (in which I believe Condado Del Rey is, not too clear on that part). What would be your take on personal security isseus there?. I’d love to move really close to work and even prescind of a car to move from home to work and back.

    2- Pricing in means of living. Don’t know if you’re experienced on the matter, but I’ve look at mortgage rates over there and they seem to be fairly positive for investment. By any means do you know about reference mortgage payments in comparison to renting?… I mean, if getting a loan isn’t that complicated, I have to put down 10-20% of property total value and mortgage monthly payments are roughly the same as renting, I’d rather buy property. Any advice over this???

    I’d really appreciate your comments, and will definitely recommend your blog as I find it really helpful..


  4. Rob says:

    Thank you, Chris for this good report. I’m moving to Panama next year and now I will have to add this area to the list of possible locations to live in.

    I would love to see you do a similar report for Coronado, also on my list and no doubt on many other readers’ list.


    • Chris says:

      Hey Rob,

      I’m glad you found the Condado del Rey report useful. I will definitely do one on Coronado. That’s a 100% sure thing. I just have to make sure I have the time to go out there and do it right. It’s an area that’s special to a lot of people.

      Thanks for checking out the site and for commenting,


  5. carlos says:

    Hey chris, i’m planning to retire the end of this year and planning to move to condado del rey, but I want to buy not rent. With my retirement check I think I can live good. what do you recommend?

    • Chris says:

      Hey Carlos,

      I think you could definitely have a nice life in Condado del Rey. I’m not sure what kind of budget you’re working with though. If you want, you can email me privately with that info at


  6. Lord Ryder says:

    Hello, I love your site, videos and the attention to detail you place on both. It has been very informative. my wife and I are planning a move to Panama and we are visiting in April to get an idea of where we would like to move. We are looking in Chiriqui and the suburbs of Panama City. We are on a really tight budget though, $500 per month for a rental. Can you give us some suggestions for areas to move?

    • Chris says:

      Hey Lord,

      Thanks so much for checking out the site. Great question. To be honest, it would be hard to find something in the city or very near the city for $500 or less per month. It’s possible, but you probably wouldn’t want to live in those areas. The closest you’ll get to Panama City is probably Arraijan and you have to be careful there. You find good neighborhoods and not so great. I’ve met quite a few people living out there though and they seem to like it. Here’s a link to some homes I found for under $500 there.|f_rent.-500&page=1

      It’s hard to find listings online, you really need to get out on the road, find a place you’re interested in, then really dig in and see what you can find word of mouth. David is the second largest city in Panama and I often see rentals in that area that fall within your budget. Kris at is an excellent source for all things in that area. I even pick her brain sometimes about living in David. My sister-in-law lives there. I like it, but they say it’s hotter than Panama City (and PC is hot). I’m sure you’d find homes in the smaller towns along the Pan-American Highway as well. I couldn’t find anything online, but if you spend some time in towns like Aguadulce, Penonomé, Chitre, Las Tablas, Anton (not El Valle de Anton), probably Rio Hato…most small towns will have what you’re looking for, but it’s hard to find anything online in those towns. It’s all about word of mouth or maybe even searching the post-it boards at the supermarkets.

      Plus, you really need to find a place you’re comfortable with. You’ll see. When you find your place, you’ll just know.

      Hope this helps.


  7. Hey, I don’t know how I found your blog but I must tell you this is really amazing, I mean for Panama City and its neighborhoods. I am an architect and urban designer. I have always had the idea of Condado del Rey was a really dumb place with all those gated comunities. However what you have shown in this post It is all the contrary. It is very diverse, plenty of stores in the hood and It is walkable altought some areas look gray.

    • Chris says:

      Hey Carlos,

      Thanks man. Yeah, I didn’t know much about Condado del Rey before doing the report. We’d been to a couple of birthday parties in the area, but now, after reporting on it, I’ve stopped off in the area just for lunch and stuff like that. I like it a lot. And like I said in the article, I can’t wait to see what else is going to show up there with all of these small shopping centers going up. If we decide to stay in the city, that’s the area I’ll probably be moving to (eventually). Oh, and I was actually wrong about one thing, that I need to go back and update. There is a school there. I don’t know how I missed it. It’s kind of wedged in between the condos and gated communities on the small road that leads through it and over to Centennial Plaza. So, it’s technically in Altos de Panama (which I consider Condado del Rey in the report). If anyone’s interested the school is called Colegio Real de Panama and their website is Thanks again Carlos for getting involved with the site. I really appreciate it, man.

  8. John says:

    Chris, I am thinking of visiting there at some point, maybe retire in the near future, I noticed in your monthly budget you stated blood pressure and Diabetic supplies, So im taking it you are a diabetic? well so am I ( type 1 ) my question, how well do you get along over there with it, an how good are the Doctors over there, and are you a native or from the U.S. thanks in advance for info.


    • Chris says:

      Hi John,

      Thanks for checking out the site. Yes, I’m beginning stages diabetic, so I just take a pill once per day (Metformina) and one pill (Zestril) for blood pressure. One of the good things about Panama is I can get this medicine without a prescription. Of course, it’s good to keep seeing the doctor to make sure you’re getting the right dosage, but in the States I’d have to go see the doctor just to get a new prescription, then go to the pharmacy. You can buy both meds here from the pharmacy with no prescription. Plus, you can buy most medicines here by the pill if you want. So if you’re running low on cash and you just want to buy 5 pills for blood pressure, you can do that.

      The doctors here, from what I’ve seen, are excellent and they’re not afraid to diagnose a problem. I’m from the U.S., born in Tulsa, Oklahoma, but raised all over the place. I moved to Panama so my wife could be closer to her family, and because it seemed like a great adventure. So far I’m lovin’ it!


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