I don’t know if this applies to everywhere in Panama, but have a feeling it does. The situation seemed very similar in Panama City also. There are no addresses and very few street signs. My house has no address so to explain how to get here, I have to explain how to find the general neighborhood. Then I have to explain how to get to the specific house. It is similar with businesses also. You will see their address listed as a certain street between the two closest cross streets.
How does the mail get anywhere? It doesn’t. There is no mail delivery. You either get a box at the post office or use general delivery. If you don’t want to go to the post office you hire someone else to do it for you. Bills are taken around town by a currier on a bike (so I am told) and left stuck in your front gate (which I found at my house). My first day here I found a couple ads and a very soggy electric bill stuck in the gate!
This has been by far my biggest challenge, finding things in this town
This is the actual official address of FedEx. We had a good time finding this one too and if it wasn’t for Joel researching on the internet and giving me info by phone, I’d probably still be looking for it!
H North Street
Ground Floor next to Fenix Travel Agency
David – CHI – Panama
So, when you are in Panama, plan for frustration finding places. It’s just the way it goes. Directions are given by landmarks – go to KFC, then two blocks past the ball field… If you can’t find the ball field, they can’t tell you if its north or south. You can ask directions from four different people and end up in four different parts of town. People will do all they can to help you but between our different concepts of direction and a language barrier, it can definitely be a challenge!
I saw somewhere “Panama will teach you patience”. For me, this has been the biggest challenge so far. But, I suppose it also goes with the territory when you move to an unfamiliar city, wherever it may be.