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The Most Important Things that Panamanians Miss from Panama When Abroad

Photo by Andres Daza from pexels to The Circular.

Without any order of relevance, here we are to show the most representative and important elements of Panamanian culture. Undoubtedly, Panamanian culture is composed of more than ten elements, but here we would like to outline those that Panamanians miss when abroad. These are eventually more representative, and inherent and play a bigger role in the bridge of the Americas.


In Panama, food plays a big role for the people. Unlike many other countries in the region, in Panamanian food rice is the ‘staple’ and is unlikely to see a meal that does not contain rice. Another important component of the Panamanian diet is the plantains which are not quite known in Europe. Plantains look pretty much like bananas but are larger and are not meant to be eaten in the same way as Bananas. They have to be cooked before eating, boiling, frying, or roasting. In terms of protein, Panamanians would prefer to eat chicken or fish. Among the most common Panamanian dishes are Sancocho (A very condiment chicken soup with veggies that look like brought from another planet), Rice and chicken, Fried Fish with fried plantains, chicheme ( a really sweet drink with corn, milk, and other species) and many more.

The Pollera

The pollera is the national women’s dress. This dress is vowed internationally due to its elegance and colours that make it stand out from the crowd. The pollera has won international recognition and awards. The ‘Pollera’ can take up to two years to be made and it can cost 20,000 dollars or more depending on the type, details and accessories. This elegant but expensive dress is normally accompanied by several gold necklaces, gold bracelets and headpieces composed of stones white gold or conventional gold.


This interesting country is full of heavy forests and jungles. The amount of green places across the country has helped Panama to earn the famous phrase that says: “The Gold of Panama is green”. Still, a country with most of its land full of virgin forest is home to many exotic animals such as the Iguana, toucans, sloths, titi monkey and some others quite dangerous as crocodiles and alligators.


Panama is considered by many, the best producer of coffee in the world. It has a well-respected reputation for being the producer of the most expensive geisha coffee in the world. This coffee can be sold in the United States for up to 100$ a cup. The region of the country that is mostly known for producing such high-quality coffee is the province of Chiriqui in the Boquete district where it can be found several coffee farms. In general, a Panamanian would not start his day until grabbing his morning cup of coffee and most likely would enjoy another one during the evening.

The Panama Canal

Commonly referred to as the 8th wonder of the world, the Panama Canal is the most important asset for Panamanians. It contributes significantly to the Panamanian economy. According to a recent report from the Canal Administration Authority, the canal contributed nearly 4 billion dollars in the last year 2023. However, the bond to this incredible engineering marvel is more than monetary… is emotional. The canal is the symbol of a generational fight that took the lives of many Panamanians. Behind the Canal, there is a long history of tragedies, slavery, independence battles and sovereignty. Many Panamanians suffered sweat and bled for it. Nowadays Panamanians feel proud of owning the Canal and if someday you meet one, he will probably let you know right away. In the collection below you can see live images (through webcam) of the Panama Canal in operation in its many locks.


Family is the main component of the Panamanian society. The bond becomes essential from very early in the life of the Panamanian. Even though Panamanians are not great at showing their feelings due to the ‘Saving Face’ culture, family plays an enormous role within Panamanians. Panamanian society is mainly a patriarchal society where the Father is expected to be the head of the home. This is due to the proximity of the culture with the Catholic religion and the culture of the ‘machismo’. However, this has been changing in recent years within new generations. Specifically in the capital city where important changes take place in the blink of an eye.

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