Panamá Viejo, also known as Panamá la Vieja, is the remaining part of the old Panama City and former capital of the country. It is located in the suburbs of the modern city. Together with the historical district of Panamá, it has been a World Heritage Site since 1997.Plan a Panama City trip in moments using our itinerary builder.
A settlement was founded on August 15, 1519 by Pedro Arias Dávila and other 100 inhabitants. At the time, it was the first permanent European settlement on the Pacific Ocean, replacing the two cities of Santa María la Antigüa del Darién and Acla. Two years later, in 1521, the settlement was promoted to the status of city by a royal decree and was given a coat of arms by Charles V of Spain, forming a new cabildo. Shortly after its creation the city became a starting point for various expeditions in Peru and an important base where gold and silver were sent to Spain.
In 1539 and 1563, the city suffered a number of fires which destroyed parts of it but did not impede the city's development. In 1610, the city reached a population of 5000, with 500 houses and convents, chapels, a hospital and the cathedral.
At the beginning of the 17th century, the city was attacked several times by pirates and indigenous people from Darién. On 2 May 1620, an earthquake damaged many buildings in the city. On 21 February 1644, the Great Fire destroyed 83 religious buildings, including the cathedral. At this time, there were 8,000 people living in the city.
Tours to Museo Panama Viejo
Canal and City Tour (Full Day) BOOK WITH VIATOR FROM $110
Duration: 8 hours
Panama Viejo Ruins Sightseeing Tour BOOK WITH VIATOR FROM $76
Duration: 3 hours
Museo Panama Viejo Reviews
A very small exhibition, maybe half a gallery. The best thing to do is walk along the ruins. The museum cafe is a joke, you can wait around for hours and there’s no staff. Overall a very poorly run pl... more »
Located just a short walk from the Ascuncion Cathedral, the Panama Viejo museum is a new addition to the surrounding UNESCO World Heritage site. Starting on the second floor, it begins with coverage o... more »
Nice place but not much to see from my point of view. Tho you can pass a few hours nicely there with a relaxing surrounding.
Beautiful exhibits and explanations! Very well done!
Places to stay near Museo Panama Viejo
Plan your trip to Panama City
Get a personalized planA complete day-by-day itinerary
based on your preferences
Customize itRefine your plan. We'll find the
best routes and schedules
Book itChoose from the best hotels
and activities. Up to 50% off
Manage itEverything in one place.
Everyone on the same page.
View all >
Nature in Panama City
Hidden gems in Panama City
View all >
Side trips from Panama City
Nearby attractions in Panama City
Plans to Museo Panama Viejo by other users
7 days in Panama BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES December, culture, outdoors, relaxing, beaches, historic sites, museums, wildlife, extra fast, popular sights PREFERENCES: December, culture, outdoors, relaxing, beaches, historic sites, museums, wildlife ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Extra fast 58 days in Panama BY A USER FROM SWITZERLAND December, popular sights PREFERENCES: December ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium 15 days in Panama City BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES May, popular sights PREFERENCES: May ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium 32 days in Panama City BY A USER FROM PANAMA September, popular sights PREFERENCES: September ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium 11 days in Panama City BY A USER FROM CANADA January, popular sights PREFERENCES: January ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium 11 days in Panama BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES December, popular sights PREFERENCES: December ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium