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Plaza de Francia

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Address: Plaza de Francia | Casco Viejo, Panama City, Panama
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Recommended length of visit: 1-2 hours
Fee: No
Description:

Called the “French Plaza” in English, this pleasant spot offers great views...

Called the “French Plaza” in English, this pleasant spot offers great views and a leisurely spot in which to purchase and savor raspados (fruity snow cones) on hot, humid days. Housed in this plaza is the elegant Instituto Nacional de Cultura (National Institute of Culture), which was among the sites used for “Quantum of Solace,” a 2008 James Bond film that supposedly took place in Bolivia and Haiti but was filmed in Panama. Formerly the Supreme Court building, the Instituto now houses a small theater and hosts cultural events.

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TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

Read all 299 reviews
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    Excellent
  • 146
    Very good
  • 56
    Average
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    Poor
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    Terrible
A great deal of history here...

It was very hot on the day we visited. But well worth the trip. Take the time to stop and read the plaques and the history.

4 of 5 starsReviewed 4 days ago
hacksawCanada
,
Canada

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299 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Canada
Level Contributor
106 reviews
25 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 99 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed 4 days ago NEW

It was very hot on the day we visited. But well worth the trip. Take the time to stop and read the plaques and the history.

Helpful?
Thank hacksawCanada
Panama City, Panama
Level Contributor
23 reviews
9 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 2 weeks ago

Apart from it being super hot all the time, it's a nice plaza. Make sure to wear repellent at sunset.

Helpful?
Thank rpkers
Saint John, Canada
Level Contributor
183 reviews
106 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 117 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 3 weeks ago

We walked all around this part of town. The restaurants are highly priced so beware. The street vendors are fair and we ordered water for $1. One liter half frozen was $2. You can walk up the stairs and look at the causeway and the boulevard out in the ocean. There are a string of street vendors with the usual... More 

Helpful?
Thank Murray D
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
27 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 4 weeks ago

Take a look at the square, the statues of French administrators, the museum and then walk back taking the boardwalk along the sea with a view shops. Very nice on a hot day with the sea breeze and the flowers.

Helpful?
Thank Pierre C
Hasselt, Belgium
Level Contributor
363 reviews
207 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 203 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed 4 weeks ago

From the walkway around Plaza de Francia you'll have great views towards the new city - a perfect spot for taking some pictures. One thing the city should take care off: there are so many birds in the small trees and they really leave a whole load of excrements around up to the point that you smell the guano everywhere... More 

Helpful?
Thank MarcMich
New York City, New York
Level Contributor
47 reviews
21 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 41 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed December 20, 2015

Historic stop in a walk around Casco Antigua. Great views of the Pacific and "new" Panama. Would benefit from some additional restoration work. Numerous small vendors in plaza and along the elevated walk with some descent things for sale.

Helpful?
Thank rgbob
Las Vegas, Nevada
Level Contributor
89 reviews
21 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 34 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed December 17, 2015

If your looking for a short stroll it's a way to fill your time, but overall not much to see. There were small monuments and street vendors. There was a nice view but not a "must see".

Helpful?
Thank Kim W
Miami Beach, Florida
Level Contributor
60 reviews
32 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 16, 2015

Plaza honoring the French influence in panama. Sits by the French embassy and has small souvenir vendors. Nice to see

Helpful?
Thank Dolfanlp13
Santa Clara, Panama
Level Contributor
108 reviews
43 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 56 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 15, 2015

The wall and Las Bovedas (The Vaults) restaurant is all that is left of the original prison - The Spanish would chain prisoners in the cells below, and allow the tide waters to rise up to their lips - the crabs would then crawl down and eat the soft flesh - the screams of agony went on for days -... More 

Helpful?
Thank Chocolate666
Fort Worth
Level Contributor
571 reviews
265 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 169 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 12, 2015

This is easily visited while in Casco Viejo. Look for the spire with the rooster. Climbing the steps and walking around the promontory provides a good view of the bay. There are interesting curio stands along the way as well.

Helpful?
Thank Tim R

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  • Do I have to buy a ticket for my infant?
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  • Is there a restaurant or café onsite?