Safety Tips in Panama

  • DONT FLASH YOUR CASH..!!
    DONT FLASH YOUR CASH..!!
    by DennyP
  • ALWAYS USE A STRONG MOSQUITO REPELLANT.
    ALWAYS USE A STRONG MOSQUITO REPELLANT.
    by DennyP
  • Concertina and fenced up bad sign
    Concertina and fenced up bad sign
    by BruceDunning

Most Viewed Warnings and Dangers in Panama

  • NatalieB13's Profile Photo

    Warning of possible dangers in panama

    by NatalieB13 Written Nov 30, 2013

    We are the Canadian couple and yes the whole story is never told in the media however to clarify a few things, we were not looking for trouble in fact up to that point we had enjoyed the week talking, socializing and enjoying the locals. We travel very humbly and with great respect of the country and people we are visiting. We had adhered to staying out of areas that higher risk was pointed out. This incident happened on the way to the airport after staying two days in isla grande at the sister moon hotel. We feel we are very smart travellers and low key, thus thus blind sided us.
    Below is a statement I made on social media and in response to a comment on CBC coverage in canada online.

    It seems we offended some people by sharing our story with the media in hopes of improving the information conveyed to the public about the country of Panama. I want to state very clearly that our intention has never been to blame anyone in Canadian government for what has happened to us but rather to alert the public about possible dangers not to scare people but to educate and to encourage the government and other similar advisory websites to consider increasing their risk level for travel in this country. Below is a message I replied with to a comment made in regards to the CBC coverage.
    Perhaps rather than judge our position or our intent with sharing our story , getting in touch with us personally would be a more respectful approach.

    from ballerina_2009

    "Seriously, you are blaming the government??? Do you read the news? You honestly let the government travel advisories dictate where you go on holidays.....wake up the world is full of crime and you take a chance every time you walk out the front door. Take responsibility for your decision."

    Dear Ballerina_2009
    we appreciate your "kind" words however if what you have read you have interpreted as blame you have misinterpreted our message.
    we never placed blame on anyone for our travel decisions or any decision for that matter. We take full responsibility. We are simply stating knowing that many people have the expectation of the country that we had, that people must be more alert to the possibility of dangers in this country. Indeed one can travel anywhere in the world and create, experience and or attract trouble.
    We strongly feel we mixed in humbly with our surroundings and the people. We are smart travellers and understated. We both stated quite clearly we did not feel this was representative of the country and its people but rather a minority of.
    Our message to share with the public was quite simply learn from our experience and be aware that this is possible unfortunately. And no we do no let any advisory website dictate where we travel to and have no fear around travelling anywhere in the world and accept that risk and responsiblity around it. Some people however may not be as comfortable or confident.. Perhaps what must be understood is that what is reported in media is not always complete and rather than criticize us about sharing our experience or make ***umptions about our intent in doing so you should try to contact us to get the full story.

    And please excuse me if we were shaken by this experience and it has left you feeling angry over our display of emotion.
    Perhaps you are use to a gun pointed 4 inches from your face but we are not.
    It saddens me that this has happened as these people must have experienced great oppression and hatred in their life to feel the need to convey behaviour to others as such. Just as it saddens me that you feel the need to express your hostility towards our intention of only sharing so others could learn from our experience.
    I truly hope you never experience anything similar.
    My husband and I take full responsiblity for every decision we choose and consider all positive as no matter what there is always a lesson to be learned. There is never any place for blame toward anyone only forgiveness and lessons learned

    Natalie Bears

    Related to:
    • Family Travel
    • Budget Travel
    • Road Trip

    Was this review helpful?

  • DennyP's Profile Photo
    1 more image

    ALWAYS USE A STRONG MOSQUITO REPELLANT HERE.

    by DennyP Written Apr 12, 2012

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    PANAMA CANAL
    Whenever travelling in this part of Equatorial Central America Always carry and use a strong Mosquito and insect repellant. Due to its location not far from the Equator this is an area that is prevelant to many mosquito borne diseases.. Malaria, Dengue fever are really bad infections to receive So a strong Repellant is neccesary to use especially at dawn and dusk when mosquitos are at their worst.Wear loose fitting lightweight clothing with long sleeves and pants..Make sure that you cover ALL exposed skin with a repellant..Dont forget your ears!!!.

    Related to:
    • Sailing and Boating
    • Photography

    Was this review helpful?

  • DennyP's Profile Photo

    ALWAYS CARRY NECCESARY TRAVEL INSURANCE

    by DennyP Written Jan 7, 2012

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    PANAMA
    Like anywhere , here in Central Americas Panama make sure that you have the neccesary Travel Insurance. I found Panama City to be a very dangerous place and was glad that I had my Travel Insurance in place. I always have the neccesary cover for my needs when travelling anywhere.
    The thought of an accident as we travel is the last thing that we really want to think of but as we all know accidents happen anywhere and at anytime. Also, Mother Nature may intervene at anytime throwing our best laid travel plans into turmoil.
    Hospital stays along with the huge costs of doctors or surgeons can carry crippling costs.
    When organising your travel plans make sure that you include the neccesay Travel Insurance that meets all your travel needs. I always include repatriation in my accident and medical Travel Insurance aggreement along with theft.
    As they say: "If you can't afford Travel Insurance."!!..You Can't afford to travel.

    Related to:
    • Budget Travel
    • Photography
    • National/State Park

    Was this review helpful?

  • Colon, Panama, To be avoided at all costs

    by briand13 Updated Apr 4, 2011

    Colon is one of the most dangerous, violent, and grotesque places in the Western Hemisphere, to give out information contrary to this, is not only patently false and ridiculous, but precarious and misconceived. Colon is a place of despicable and abject vileness commensurate to the harshest slums of Haiti or Brazil. No Panamanian with the slightest bit of honesty, truthfulness, or decency would tell you otherwise.

    - Brian D'Ambrosio

    www.briandambrosio.com

    Related to:
    • Road Trip
    • Backpacking
    • Arts and Culture

    Was this review helpful?

  • BruceDunning's Profile Photo
    1 more image

    Do Not Pet the Dogs

    by BruceDunning Written Feb 28, 2009

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    I imagine all of these dogs are littered with worms. A US pet shelter would have a heart attack the way these animals listlessly meander around town, and can barely hold their head up. They are sick and in very poor shape. I felt sorry for them, but to feed them is not right, and to make a friend can be dangerous to your health. No doubt. They just want to lay down and die. Some looked like they were

    Related to:
    • Arts and Culture
    • Archeology

    Was this review helpful?

  • BruceDunning's Profile Photo

    Emberas Are Not All Endangered

    by BruceDunning Updated Feb 28, 2009

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Not all those natives are endangered and being encroached by tourists. This little old lady was down right mean, and she surely did not want to be here, but was planted square in the middle of the main square looking for handouts. I did this, and she was not at all appreciative. On the other hand, I am sure she does not want all these intruders coming to her turf, and gawking. She no doubt has not choice but to bring down her pride and humble for money. However,m I was later shopping for something made locally and she came along, tried to force me to buy at a very steep price, and when I refused, she gave me a hand sign only known to the gangsters in Los Angeles. She was mean, and contrary the tourists are the threatened ones.

    Related to:
    • Arts and Culture
    • Museum Visits

    Was this review helpful?

  • BruceDunning's Profile Photo
    4 more images

    Portobelo EAteries

    by BruceDunning Written Feb 28, 2009

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Watch were you may want to Eat. The appearance of most, if not all of the establishments look to me as if you may take something home with you. Not all looked that bad,but the back door and the "runoff" of stuff into the drainage ditch around town caused me to wonder about sanitation. A small bar/grocery convenience store is right in the middle if you need a little packaged food.

    Related to:
    • Architecture
    • Arts and Culture
    • Historical Travel

    Was this review helpful?

  • BruceDunning's Profile Photo
    1 more image

    Portobelo Security

    by BruceDunning Updated Feb 28, 2009

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    The local police kept driving by while the tour bus was stopped here. A fair number of locals also show up here on colorful buses daily, to shop, or leisure? The danger may not be outwardly apparent, but unemployment is high, and mix that with some drink and maybe someone goes loco on you. I do not think the people would intentionally get in your "turf" but I got panhandled by more than one to give money for a drink. The police car kept on constant movement around the two main streets of the town, keeping close watch on the younger men hanging around the outside bar.

    Related to:
    • Arts and Culture
    • Historical Travel

    Was this review helpful?

  • BruceDunning's Profile Photo
    2 more images

    Portobelo Restrooms-Get REady

    by BruceDunning Written Feb 28, 2009

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    These are the more "rustic" of kinds. The ones I first went into were not worth walking through the door. I backed out and went to the little restaurant next door. For 25 cents, they let you in. Water barely ran, though. The flush was okay, but ask where does it flush to. I noted a "creek" that looked like a drainage ditch for whatever. I am pretty sure some places do not have a sewer system access, and/or it does not work. The overflow most likely ends up in the bay. One restroom; I did not try them all, I was told by the church needed water to prime the flush, and it was dingy inside. Maybe the best one is at he administrative building, in the rear, so to speak.

    Related to:
    • Historical Travel
    • Arts and Culture
    • Archeology

    Was this review helpful?

  • BruceDunning's Profile Photo
    5 more images

    NonFit Not on Tours

    by BruceDunning Updated Feb 28, 2009

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Do not go to them if you cannot handle it. A fair number of tours may take a little effort, and others more so. If people are not able to keep up, are miserable in doing so, or hold back others; do not go on tours. Some look like they are going to die on the spot.

    Related to:
    • Seniors
    • Disabilities
    • Arts and Culture

    Was this review helpful?

  • BruceDunning's Profile Photo
    1 more image

    Tips REquested-Please

    by BruceDunning Updated Feb 28, 2009

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Hokey locals for tips. This is another place where the almighty dollar outlay prevails over just plain do not embarrass them or you. These people need to live, so set up shop on the bridge getting back to the ship. In playing, they obviously want a tip. If a picture is taken, guess what. Myself, I cannot stand to see this from either side. It depict the cheap taste of tourists, in my opinion, and the locals have to do it to survive. Give it up.

    Related to:
    • Theme Park Trips
    • Arts and Culture
    • Historical Travel

    Was this review helpful?

  • BruceDunning's Profile Photo
    4 more images

    Security is Mandatory

    by BruceDunning Updated Feb 28, 2009

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Make Sure you know where you are, where you are going, and when/how to get back. The streets in town look safe enough, but would not venture too far off the main one. No one said do not go out on your own, and crime was not discussed much. But, given the poverty level, and local indigenous hard living can lead to problems. Taxi drivers can take you around for $3 to destination.

    Related to:
    • Arts and Culture
    • Historical Travel

    Was this review helpful?

  • m1nkey's Profile Photo

    Taxis, watch out!

    by m1nkey Written Jul 20, 2008

    We found out the hard way that a lot of taxi drivers are crooks! We paid $20 for a trip to see a relative. The return trip was $5. We were schooled by my Father in law that you must find out(from your hotel staff) what an average fare is to your destination. Then ask the driver before what he wants. We actually haggled a taxi fare, imagine that. We did find a good fellow and we used him several times. He was friendly and honest. His name is Tito and his number is 6549-3943. Call him.

    Was this review helpful?

  • colleengill's Profile Photo

    get a reliable tour guide

    by colleengill Written Nov 25, 2007

    If you decide to hire a guide to show you around be sure to have someone trustworthy! Our tour guide was a nice guy but spoke hardly a word of english and so there were a few misunderstandings about what time the border closed (leads to lots of stress!). Also, for some reason we made lots of stops to see his "friends" which included strange pick ups and drop offs (we were driving around in a pick-up truck). As you'll see in the picture below, we picked up a bunch of oil drums and dropped them off at a sketchy military-style port. Made us very uneasy!

    Was this review helpful?

  • kyoub's Profile Photo

    Save on electricity

    by kyoub Written Oct 28, 2007

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Panama was worried about the use of to much electricity because of drought conditions. So every afternoon the electricity was shut of for 4 hours. This was no problem for us because we were always out of the cottage at that time.

    Related to:
    • Road Trip

    Was this review helpful?

Panama Hotels

See all 151 Hotels in Panama

Top Panama Hotels

Panamá City Hotels
449 Reviews - 1032 Photos
Bocas del Toro Hotels
176 Reviews - 375 Photos
Penonomé Hotels
2 Hotels
Farallón Hotels
2 Hotels
Almirante Hotels
2 Reviews - 6 Photos
David Hotels
21 Reviews - 13 Photos
Coclé Hotels
1 Hotel
Volcán Hotels
2 Reviews - 3 Photos
La Chorrera Hotels
2 Reviews - 1 Photo
Isla Flamenco Hotels
1 Review - 6 Photos
Colón Hotels
12 Reviews - 43 Photos
Cerro Azul Hotels
9 Reviews - 20 Photos
Boquete Hotels
57 Reviews - 102 Photos
Isla Taboguilla Hotels
See nearby hotels
Isla Taboga Hotels
19 Reviews - 60 Photos

Instant Answers: Panama

Get an instant answer from local experts and frequent travelers

100 travelers online now

Comments

Panama Warnings and Dangers

Reviews and photos of Panama warnings and dangers posted by real travelers and locals. The best tips for Panama sightseeing.
Map of Panama