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


Ten years ago when Donna and I arrived in Panama to "see" it might be "the place" to move to from Canada one of the first places we considered was Casco Viejo - San Filepe - the old city. We loved the charm and feel but at the time we just couldn't see it as viable as we had an office to run and Donna would be traveling from the airport on the other side of the city.

Besides, almost anything we would have considered would have required a total renovation and I wasn't prepared for that and a new office.

Donna and I wandered around Casco again yesterday afternoon and when we sat for a drink at the roof top bar called CasaCasco (across the street from the park and back side of the American Trade Hotel) we both commented on how we'd enjoy living there but we still have the office and that isn't practical. But Casco has changed so much in 10 years. When we first wandered around the only area you could visit and feel comfortable was the Plaza Bolviar, the French Plaza and the area near the presidential palace. The further you wandered the less comfortable you became as there were very few renovated buildings.

Where the American Trade is today was just not an area you would want to wander unless you had a real "nose" for the future. Today it is amazing as is the area from it to the French Plaza. All new restaurants, all new apartment buildings, hotels, bars - wow - what a change in 10 years.

After wandering for a few hours we ended up eating in a tiny, tiny, hole in the wall japanese restaurant called AKI - we chose their sampler plate of appetizers, then 2 more separate appetizers to go with our happy hour gin fiz lotus drinks - yum yum yum. It was a tough choice as we'd run into a new restaurant that offers a back garden atmosphere with a BBQ menu.

more news >>


Casco Viejo is not the only place in Panama that has seen a huge change in 10 years. Virtually any area of the city has seen improvement - some more, some less. Outside the city on the Caribbean side it has taken years but almost everyone now knows how pretty that side of Panama is - if the government would finish the titling of all the land it would blossom. On the Pacific side from the city to the Azuero Peninsula there has been too much development for my liking but it shows how popular it is to most Panamanians. Even as far as David, changes have taken place - some for the good - some not.

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.

Some newsy stuff - for the third time in 10 years a construction site had a major chunk of its hole collapse because of the rain. This collapse was caught on someone's camera and posted on the net. Not being a contractor I don't know if this is a sign of sloppy workmanship, planning or just bad luck. I do remember reading about the French and the canal and the amount of mud and slides they had to contend with over their years.

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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