Facing the Pacific Ocean, the capital of Panama offers, at first sight, a landscape of sky-scrapers along its famous bay. At night-time, the sight of its many illuminated towers becomes a magical sight. Extremely spread out, Panama City does not limit itself to the modern postcard, but it is in constant development with much property planning going on. As you walk around the capital, it reveals numerous different aspects, all very contrasting. In contrast to the modern centre housing the world's largest concentration of banks after Switzerland, the area of 'Casco Antiguo', which was abandoned for a long time and left to the poor, has been on the upswing for several years thanks to its subscription to the UNESCO World Heritage and to tourists keenly interested in the Spanish past of the colonial city. Walks can be improvised around the lanes and charming little places to admire the striking facades of eclectic architecture and pastel colours. Quaint and poetic, the atmosphere is unique here. Not far away, the district of 'Panama Viejo' preserves the superb ruins of the first Spanish settlement in 1519. The verdant hill of Anton, the highest point in Panama City, allows you to easily find your bearings and enjoy the view over the whole of the capital, including the port of Balboa, the world's second largest port after Singapore, the Bridge of the Americas, the only terrestrial link between North and South America and the famous canal, retroceded to the Panamanians by the Americans in 2006. On the ocean, the boats, small and big, wait to cross the Miraflores locks. From the Pacific Ocean, a 55-minute train ride along the banks of the canal is enough to follow their journey to the Atlantic Ocean.
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