|General information about David, Panama:
David was founded in 1602 and is strategically located in the center of the western-most Province
of Panama - Chiriquí (pronounced chee-ree-KEY). Chiriquí is one of Panama's richest provinces
and David reaps the benefits as an active commercial, distribution, and government center. As the
second largest city in Panama and focal point of Chiriquí's strong regional identity, it retains a sedate
David is situated on gently rolling plains about half way between the Pacific Ocean to the
south and Cordillera Talamanca Highlands to the north. On the ocean a short drive away, you will
find Puerto Armuelles and the beaches of La Barqueta, Las Lajas and Playa Hermosa. Almost the
entire Pacific coast line of Chiriquí consists of beaches. Near David is the small mountain town of
Boquete, situated at the foot of Volcán Barú and a little further away on the opposite side of Volcán
Barú, is the town of Volcán. In the shadow of an extinct volcano, these towns are known for their
fresh mountain air, beautiful views, mountain grown coffee and fresh vegetables. As an important
agricultural center, David is home to an international trade and agricultural fair, Feria Internacional
hosted in early March of every year.
Growing by leaps and bounds, David is rapidly becoming a progressive tropical city with more
and more new developments and modernization ocurring every week while still retaining the unique
Latin American cultural identity.
Approximately 150,000 people live within greater David and Chiriquí has a provincial population of
over 350,000. The overall standard of living is relatively high and cost of living low, even for Panama.
David has a high level of employment and the city is generally well maintained. Like most of Panama,
infrastructure in David is better than you will find in any other Central American city and is on par with
North American standards in many areas.
Most streets and highways are in good repair and services are reliable. Privatized Union Fenosa
provides reliable electricity services and from IDAAN, tap water you can drink (claimed to be the
world's purest) is plentiful. David has frequent and inexpensive regularly scheduled bus service to any
part of the city and twice weekly garbage collection throughout all neighborhoods. Also available to
everyone are excellent communication services. Cable & Wireless is a privatized telephone company,
providing network telephone and inexpensive long distance service along with DSL high speed Internet
services. There are two good cellular companies, two cable TV providers, Direct TV service, two
wireless Internet providers and numerous radio stations.
Shopping and living in David gives you access to every type of merchandise and service you
might desire. New shops and services to accommodate the rapid growth in Chiriqui's expatriate
community are opening regularly. There are several excellent hospitals, ten auto dealers, two
shopping malls, four department stores, six major appliance and electronic stores, three good
furniture outlets, a Price Smart (Costco), and 'Do-It' Center hardware. Smaller retailers include
numerous boutiques, shoe stores and mini department stores. David has great bakeries and
pastry shops, a dozen large supermarkets, 2 theatres (with English movies), many dry cleaners, a
Blockbusters and a dozen other video stores, bowling lanes, numerous paint and building materials
stores, quality tool houses and well stocked hardware, automotive and industrial supply stores, etc.
You can find everything you are accustomed to at home and more, in Panama.
Panamanians are fun loving by nature, and among the friendliest people in the world. They will
go out of their way to help you and usually expect only your kindness in return. They are generally
well educated and hold to a culture that cherishes family, is almost without racial prejudices
and appreciates and treats everyone as equals; foreigners included. Panamanians are very
appreciative of visitors trying to learn their language. Even so, in recent years, English has become
quite common in the service industry and everywhere you will meet many people who speak and
understand some English.