1. Panama has a great variety of attractions all in close proximity
Panama has a diverse geography with exotic tropical islands, rainforests and jungles, cool gorgeous mountain refuges, Caribbean-style beaches, seven living Indian cultures, a pretty Miami-style capital city, historic venues (Columbus and Balboa both came to Panama) adventure tours, diving, rafting, kayaking - not to mention one of the world’s engineering marvels- The Panama Canal.
2. Panama is safe
Panama has the highest rating for tourist safety from the prestigious Pinkerton Intelligence Agency. In addition, as noted in the newsletter of the AARP (American Association of Retired Persons) Panama has a first-world infrastructure of roads, business services, medical care and telecommunications. General Manuel Noriega, along with his corrupt government has been out of power for more than a decade.
3. Panama is close
As part of Central America, Panama is just a short plane ride away from the U.S. Seven major US cities offer direct daily flights to Panama City: Los Angeles, Newark, Miami, Houston, Dallas, Atlanta and Orlando. Flight time from Florida is 2½ hours and Los Angeles is a 4½ hour flight.
4. Panama is tourist friendly
English is spoken as a second language and the Panamanian people are among the friendliest in the world. The infrastructure is first-world, including excellent roads, a sophisticated business sector, the second largest Free Trade Zone in the world and a banking sector with 100 banks. You can even drink the tap water.
5. Panama has the US dollar as its currency
Panama’s currency is the US dollar. That’s right - in Panama one of the traveler’s major hassles is eliminated. There is no need for currency exchange because the US dollar is the currency...no need to be a mathematical genius to figure out what that meal just cost you.
6. Panama is the best place for ecotourism today
Panama’s position as a narrow land bridge connecting two continents has endowed it with some of the worlds’ most pristine and bio-diverse rainforests in national parks covering 5 million acres. A key indicator of its bio-diversity: Panama has 944 recorded bird species, more than the U.S. and Canada combined. Furthermore, all that great nature is very accessible, with some of the best locations less than an hour from Panama City . There is a local saying that while in other countries you have 20 tourists looking at one bird, in Panama you have one tourist looking at 20 birds
7. Panama is the affordable exotic destination
Normally this kind of pristine natural beauty comes at a fancy price. Panama has just begun to promote itself as a tourism destination and so prices are some of the best in the market. " Panama is the most beautiful treat in the world and almost undiscovered," claimed a recent article in Harper's Bazaar. "Known mostly for its canal, Panama is, in fact, an undiscovered tourist paradise," stated a recent travel article in the Boston Globe. The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times, Modern Maturity, National Geographic and the March, 2004 edition of the Smithsonian have featured long travel articles this year praising the undiscovered delights the country has to offer.
8. Panama has a wide selection of beaches and island venues and activities
With two coasts, countless islands and Caribbean-style beaches, there is much to choose from for beach vacations from the full service resorts to exotic island getaways and the islands of the San Blas Indian reservation.
9. Panama is world-class for adventure
International experts rave about river running in Panama which includes rafting, kayaking and motorized river boats. There are rivers in Panama where you can ride 20 sets of rapids in one afternoon. Canyoning, trekking, rappelling and surfing offer similar world-class experiences for the hard and soft adventure seeker.
10. Panama has world class fishing, diving, snorkeling and sailing
One place in Panama, Pinas Bay, holds 170 world fishing records. There are five world class diving areas: Coiba National Marine Park, the Pearl Islands, Bocas Del Toro archipelago, Portobello and for historical diving, the Panama Canal .
11. Panama has a first-world infrastructure
Panama has a first world infrastructure including a US style capital city with high speed Internet, first rate hotels and restaurants and shopping almost on a par with the United States. The highway infrastructure, medical care, telecommunications and business services are excellent-comparable to the States.
12. Panama is Survivor Country
The CBS Survivor series for Fall 2003 and Winter 2004 take place in Panama’s Pearl Islands. In fact the exotic, nature-rich islands of Panama have been home to the Survivor reality TV shows.
13. Panama is hurricane Free
Panama is situated south of the hurricane track.
14. Panama is economically and politically sound
Panama's economic performance is, almost every year, better than just about every other country in Latin America . In fact, over the past 40 years, the country's inflation rate has averaged less than 2% per year...that's simply unheard of south of the United States. The Tripartite Committee has ranked Panama #1 in the region for low cost of living.
15. Panama has the most modern and successful international offshore bank haven in Latin America
(and the second largest in the world, after Switzerland). With more than 120 banks from 35 countries, including Citibank, HSBC, Dresdner, Bank of Tokyo, Bank of Boston, and International Commercial Bank of China.