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  • Writer's pictureYuka

Is Panama Safe to live?

When buying real estate in another country, one of the major questions is this. Is Panama safe to live in? Why would you risk moving to a country where it is not safe??? Especially moving to Panama with children, you would want to ensure it is safe.

We live in Pedasi, a town situated on the southeastern tip of the Azuero Peninsula on Panama's Pacific coast. About 5 hours drive from Panama City. It is a fisherman’s town. Have I ever felt unsafe in Pedasi? The answer is NO.

Our house is located in downtown Pedasi.

During carnival seasons, it gets quite loud and very busy but the rest of the year, it is a calm and lovely place to live. I can even feel safe enough to walk at night alone. Although I would avoid walking near bars at night, but hey it is common sense, right?


The other option is to live in the Gated Community. Pedasi has 2 Gated communities in town. Andromeda and Costa Pedasi. 24-hour security. There are many expats living outside of the Gated Community in Pedasi so it is not something you need to worry about but the option is there. And there are many gorgeous houses with ocean-view. Once in a while, you will hear on the news of break-ins and stolen TVs, furniture, and personal items. These things happen, unfortunately. Compared to other central and southern Latino countries, Panama is one of the safest countries. I have noticed that there are not many security fences with razor wire in Pedasi. That made me feel better and it was one of the reasons we chose Pedasi. On top of that, there are police patrolling quite often so I feel quite safe.

I feel safe to let kids go out and play or do errands for me. I grew up in a small town in Japan and it reminds me of my childhood back home. Every neighbor knows who you are. Same here in Pedasi. Everybody knows everybody. So if you are being bad, or skipping school, they know that as well. lol Once you walk downtown in Pedasi, you will quickly realize that everybody says hello. Young and Old. With smile. It is such a nice feeling and you feel very welcome in Pedasi.


Although it is strongly suggested that when you are not at home, you need to lock the door and windows. It is good to turn the porch light on at night. A minimum security is necessary. Expats tend to have bigger houses, a lot of furniture, and shiny gadgets so we are more likely to be a target but like I said, minimum security is necessary no matter where you live.

When snowbirds are back home, don’t let everyone in town know that you are away. You can hire a house sitter, have some lights on at home, and lock the door. Don’t leave your shiny Mercedes or BMW out where everyone can see.


I cannot speak for other popular expat areas such as Coronado, David, Boquete, Volcan, Bocas Del Toro, and Panama City.

In general, Panama City is safer compared to other major cities, I felt safe but it's best to avoid walking alone at night in places like Casco Antiguo, Santa Ana, San Miguelito, or Calidonia areas.


In a nutshell, Panama is a very safe country to live in. The best way to find out is to come and see.


Well, this is my take on the safety in Panama. Please feel free to share your thoughts.

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