Panama Viejo (Old Panama City ruins)

Things to do in Panama

Viejo was the first European city built in the Pacific coast of the Americas. It was founded in 1519 by Pedro Arias Davila and soon became one of the most important trade centers in the continent, especially for gold and silver. This particular fact is what made it so attractive to pirates wanting to steal the countries treasures and eventually made them attack the city until its destruction in 1671. This attack was lead by welsh pirate Henry Morgan, who was later apprehended and imprisoned in England due to the violation of a peace treaty between Spain and England. He was actually released in 1674 when he proved he didn't have knowledge of the treaty.

The attack caused the death of thousands of people and left the city in ruins. The city was never re-built and the new Panama City was founded slightly south west of its former location (around 8km away).

Panama Viejo is the most funded archaeological site in the country due to its cultural value and it is very well preserved for touristic purposes. The site now offers 57 acres of crumbling building remains connected by paths with interpretive signs in both English and Spanish for you to understand its history. Panama Viejo also has a visitor center with one of the best handicraft markets in the city, a two story museum and a viewing tower in the Cathedral Tower of the old city (the most prominent building in the ruins site).

The old city was declared a UNESCO world heritage site in 1997.

Admission Fee:

Full Package (including museum and viewing tower)
Adults: $6.00; Seniors: $5.00 ; Students: $3.00

Visitor center and Museum only
Adults: $3.00; Seniors: $2.00; Children and Students: $0.50

Ruins path and Viewing tower
Adults: $4.00; Seniors: $3.00; Students: $2.00

Children younger than 8 years old cannot access the viewing tower for security reasons.

Opening hours:
Museum: Tue to Sun from 9:00 am to 5:30pm

Viewing tower: Tue to Sun from 8:30am to 6:30pm
Even thought both facilities are closed on Mondays, you can still visit the ruins path that day.

It is important to highlight that the visitor center and museum are about 15 minutes walk from the ruin's site.


Panama Viejo, 8km north east of Panama city, Panama Viejo, Panama

View Larger Map

My Lists

Create New Guide


Mini Guides

Login to create your guides for Panama.

Add to My Guide

Create New Guide



Recommended Experiences in Panama

Create & Share your own Guide to Panama with friends and family!

Add your recommended places to visit by browsing the website and pressing the icon.

Create your own guide of favourite 'must see' places

Earn your Local Expert badge by Sharing your guides with others

Get your guide seen by submitting it to the Mini Guides section


Mini Guides

We Are Part of the My Guide Network!

My Guide Panama is part of the global My Guide Network of Online & Mobile travel guides.

We are now in 120+ Destinations and Growing. If you are interested in becoming a local travel partner and would like to find out more then click for more info about our Website Business Opportunity.

Nearby Destinations

No results found

    Select Category first

    Select Category first


Events in Panama

Filter Events by Sub-Category

Please select a Date first.

Search for a company in Panama