Jamaican Travel: A Shopper’s Paradise in Panama
by Stephanie Koathes Jan 28, 2019
When we think of travel destinations that are close to home, oftentimes Kingston 22, Miami, comes to mind.
There are places other than Florida that are a short plane ride away from Jamaica and offer everything you could want when it comes to shopping.
That brings us to Panama.
Located in Central America and famous for its all-important canal, Panama has a lot to offer especially for those who love to shop.
Move over Miami, Panama City is no slouch in the retail department. The downtown area is a mass of incredible skyscrapers glittering near the coast full of world-class shopping malls.
Head to the chic Multiplaza Mall with its 280 shops or visit the four-storey Multicentral Mall for a day of great shopping. You’ll find bargains and high-end international designer wares if you’re feeling like splashing a little more cash.
Outside of downtown Panama City, by the Panama City bus terminal, you’ll find the massive Albrook Mall. This is the place to go when you’re looking for a wide variety of shops and goods at low prices. If you’re a serious shopper, plan to dedicate a day to this behemoth of a mall.
For more of a local shopping experience, head to the Avenida Central Pedestrian Mall near to the Casco Viejo area. This is a long stretch of shops and eateries selling super cheap goods. Just be aware that you might be getting some knockoffs when you shop here. It’s best to visit in the day as it can maybe unsafe at night.
When you’ve finished shopping take a stroll along through beautiful Cinta Costera Park along the coast. There are families playing here, you can buy snow cones and sit on the coastal wall and look up at the city’s shimmering skyscrapers. You can even exercise using the free equipment in the park.
Or grab a cup of ceviche from the fish market first (sea bass is traditional) and enjoy a local lunch as you stroll.
Though the official currency in Panama is the Panama Balboa, the currency on the ground is the US dollar.
Jamaicans don’t need a visa to visit.
If you’re ready and raring to visit Panama, there are direct flights from both Kingston and Montego Bay on Copa Airlines.