New discoveries in Casco Viejo

Welcome to the breathtaking views from Casco Viejo!

Welcome to the breathtaking views from Casco Viejo!

There are just some things a picture can’t capture. A feeling. A smell. Laughter. Movement. Dance. A child learning to skateboard.

Plaza Francia

Plaza Francia

Today I walked around our neighborhood just before sunset. Plaza Francia was constructed as a memorial to the French effort and those who died in the first attempt to build the Panama Canal. Not only did they lose almost $300,000,000 (back in the 1880’s!) but also  22,000 lives, many of whom were Caribbean.

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Here, you find a grassy area in the center of the square with a tree canopy above you. Dozens of birds line the branches, many species and of all sizes.

Panorama from the Esteban Huertas Walkway

Panorama from the Esteban Huertas Walkway

The  Plaza is nestled right against the Promenade also known as the Esteban Huertas Walkway. Storks fly around and above you, you can enjoy the view while being slightly paranoid (that you’re going to get “lucky”). Their large wings spanned elegantly as they soar against the wind, no need to flap, they slowly glide towards the community tree where hundreds of others sit.

Birds, trees and life, buzzing all around you at Plaza Francia.

Birds, trees and life, buzzing all around you at Plaza Francia.

Sunset strollers

Sunset strollers with one of my favorite breed of dog.

 

The Center for Spanish Culture in Panama

The Center for Spanish Culture in Panama

Continuing to walk the Promenead, I am reminded of a gallery exhibit at the Center of Culture, which seems to always be open, even very late at night. Beautiful photographs are displayed against a rustic but clean back wall. The outside  breeze and sunset colors on the sky only add to the feeling. Blue shutters give contrast to the white walls, creating the illusion you are in Italy or Greece, but then I remember it’s actually Panama, and I just stumbled upon this treasure.

The Art Exhibit

The Art Exhibit

I walk up the stairs only to see closed offices on one level, a technological presentation in Spanish on the next. Finally, I hear people mingling and its getting louder.. like a party. Then There it is. La Terraza. A rooftop bar I have never heard of, that is truly the best kept secret of Casco Viejo.

La Terraza, rooftop bar in Casco Viejo

Upon the first sip of my drink, not only am I on cloud 9, I have officially found my go to spot! Sometimes it’s really fun ordering something you don’t exactly understand. And being so pleasantly surprised. The Humilde. A fruity and unique tasting drink with the Tanguerey. Reminds me of those strawberry creams sodas (but not as sweet!) made by Sobe, that Lizard brand glass bottle that we had all used for gravity bongs back in the day. The garnish is a marishino cherry and what looks like a slice of an orange. But upon physical inspection it is a qumqut! Genius. Delicious! Wow. This place is on another level. Highly recommend!

The Humilde, delicious!

The Humilde, delicious!

Cheers!

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