Welcome to Panama

So Why Panama?
Panama is such an amazing country and surprises everyone who visits. I joke with our friends that if they are planning on coming to Panama be prepared to be overwhelmed.

So Why Panama? Is there a reason - No, There are several reasons -- the opportunities are plentiful, albeit the prices are going up.

We have really taken to the Caribbean coast as it offers so much nicer water and beaches.

Costa del Este
Panama City, Panama
The 2012 Spay Panama calendar is now available and it's their best ever! Both Panamanian AND U.S. holidays are labeled. The pictures featured are all of formerly homeless dogs and cats that were neutered and lucky enough to have been adopted. All proceeds go to support the wonderful efforts of Spay Panama to control the overpopulation of unwanted pets. Since its inception in 2002, Spay Panama has sterilized over 24,000 animals! The yearly calendar is their main fundraising tool and they really need your support. Like most other non-profit organizations, Spay Panama has seen a severe drop in donations due to the economy.

Pat Chan


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Since we moved to Panama in 2006 every time we tell one of our friends that we moved to the Republic of Panama, the first question is always "Why Panama". So we decided to build a web site to help them understand how simple the decision to choose Panama really was to us. We have included some links to other sites and to articles we think might help understand Panama. This  is  by no means exhaustive, so be sure to move through the suggested sites and explore the links and resources they suggest to ensure  you get as much information as possible.

News and events


Over the past 12 years like many expats we have have said that some things have improved and some things are worse.

The traffic for instance actually falls into both categories. No question Balboa avenue, now the Cinta Costera has improved the traffic flow downtown whereas here in Costa del Este, the traffic has gone from almost no cars to a situation where it is almost impossible to come and go at various times of the day. I can't imagine why the authorities have not chosen to rectify this mess - I know there are locations in Panama that are bad too but there are so many prominent Panamanians that live here that it hard to understand why they have not been screaming.

The other example of this improved and worsening state is the litter. When we first arrive 12 years ago litter was everywhere and no one seemed to care. I remember watching a some young women downtown dressed as office workers standing on a busy street eating some kind of lunch and when they were done they simply threw the containers on the ground with no compunction or thought of this type of act being wrong. I also remember walking along the Paseo del Mar in Costa del Este and it was a sea of plastic swirling around the sidewalk. Today there are trash cans everywhere and people use them. They fill up in no time. So all positive - right! Well not so.

In Costa del Este we have watched for years as trahs runs down our river with every rain fall. So much trash that it built up all along the waters edge of the Paseo del Mar - a two kilometers of waterfront. We never thought it would change. In the past couple of years groups like the Autobaun Society have begun to do weekend clean up sessions to help the waterfowl and they have taken dozens if not more garbage container loads from this area. But every rain fall there is a new batch of trash. 

more news >>


Within the past year another group has sprung up to work on cleaning the water front on a constant basis. So far they have removed over 22 thousand plastic bags of trash from one side of the Paseo - 22 thousand bags - and yet the river still runs white with plastic when it rains. When will it change? How many generations will it take to make this change? One, two or more. 

We've been so fortunate to meet and enjoy so many other expats and Panamanians over the 12 years.

We love to eat and drink and explore so we make a point of every month getting out as often as we can with friends.

We get notes often asking about something to do with Panama - because we encourage people to ask. We've been so fortunate with our move and the people that have helped us we are more than willing to help where we can.

Feel free to ask if you are you just thinking of a vacation in Panama or if you are thinking of making Panama home we'd be happy to point you at some resources or give you some suggestions - we have nothing to sell and nothing to gain except maybe meeting a new friend. We have been really privileged to get to know some great friends during our past 10 years.

Our area of Costa del Este has just continued to evolve. Not all the growth has great - the traffic in the morning and evening is unbearable. But the upside is all the new services. 

If you want, write us if you have questions - we love to help.

We add to the areas of the site like people, sites, and services as our experience with each of them change so you should feel comfortable dealing with any of them.

more news >>


Donna started iCanGarden.com and is now over  20 years later it has become Canada's largest Internet gardening resource site. Several thousand people visit her site every day. Spend some time looking over the thousands of pictures of gardens from all over the world.

We are so proud of the TV special just aired by Recreating Eden - entitled "the Gardening Tourist".

Donna recently changed the look of the site - - if you enjoy it - let her know - I am really proud of her.


In 2006 Donna started a site dedicated exclusively to her garden tours but she has been hosting tours since 1998

For more than 18 years she has been hosting groups of gardeners to gardens all over the world.

Donna has some incredible garden tours lined up for 2017 and 2018 - her 2016 tours were all either fully booked or over booked. 

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