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


Another month has flown by. Donna has started her tours. She is off to London on her Chelsea tour and will only be popping in for a couple of days when she finishes to head back on her Spain tour. I will miss her as I always do but I know she loves visiting all the gardens and meeting her friends/guests.

The past month has seen the raining season much to Donnas pleasure - she so much prefers the green season versus the brown. When everyone asks about what the rainy season is all about in Panama unless the person has been in a tropical country it is really hard to describe. The morning is perfect, lovely to walk then mid day it rains and then clears and it is warm and muggy and it could rain again at any moment. Just carry an umbrella - the rain is warm unless the wind comes up then it feels cooler. Unless I am wearing good clothes I never mind getting wet. The locals think Donna & I are crazy out for our walks in the pounding rain.

Our little neighbourhood is changing again. When we purchased our condo in Costa del Este it was virtually the only tower - there were several under construction but we were it when it came to occupied. One of the things we loved about the condo was its location. We were next to a river, a park and we had a great view of the bay. We were told the park was dedicated to the founder of the area and we never dreamt it would ever be touched. Well the unimaginable happened. We received a notice that someone made a decision to "pave paradise to put up a parking lot."

Don't get me wrong, the parking around Costa del Este because of the office and condos is atrocious and something needed to be done. The developers should have been forced to create enough parking for the office towers or the condos but they didn't. When I heard about the parking lot I thought, wrongly, that they would build underground to preserve the park but no, they decided to make a lot for 800 cars. The only saving grace is they are putting it down at the other end of the parkl.

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In addition to condos, office towers and stores we've also watched restaurants - I took some pictures of a couple of new ones - I am really excited seeing Bario Pizza others I am sure are waiting for the IHOP.


The other huge change in Costa del Este in 10 years is the work being done to reduce the litter and trash. We've seen garbage bins installed along sidewalks and walk ways. We've seen doggy poop bag dispensers put in front of many apartment towers.

Along the coast of Costa del Este every few week ends there are groups setting up work bees to do beach clean up. Today was one such group.

Last weekend there was a small festival type set up in the town center area near the new mall. This is the second one we've seen and we wandered over to see what was going on. There were a number of merchants selling everything from sunglasses to homemade crafts. Donna talked me into buying a pair of bamboo sunglasses - kind of magooish but I like them.

Now if they "they" could only fix the traffic issue in our area - two entrances/exits for thousands of cars every day. I am sure they will have something in the works before they open two new malls in the next 1.5 years as they will bring thousands of more cars as will the 10 or so more towers for people and offices that will be open in another 2 years.

We've never regretted our decision to move to Panama - in spite of the challenges we still believe it was our best move and we look forward to our next 10 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.

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Donna started iCanGarden.com and now almost 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.

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 2016 and 2017 - her 2015 tours were all either fully booked or over booked. 


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