Foundation Of Old Panama City

Observed annually on the 15th of August, Foundation of Old Panama City—also known as Panama la Vieja Day—is a holiday that celebrates and commemorates the anniversary of the city’s foundation. Located in the suburbs of modern-day Panama, the remnants of Panama Viejo (Old Panama) are now listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site and have been since 1997.

On August 15, 1519, Panama was founded by Pedrarias Dávila, and it was the first permanent European settlement on the Pacific Ocean. The city was promoted to the status of a city by the Crown of Spain and became a vital starting point for expeditions into Peru. Because this holiday is a public one, most businesses and schools in Panama are closed on this day.

Fun Facts About Panama City

Below is a small handful of fun, fascinating, and exciting facts that we’ve learned about Panama City. We hope that the following facts are insightful for people wanting to learn more about this city and then use that curiosity as a jumping-off point for further research.

  • Panama City was founded on August 15, 1519.
  • Old Panama City was attacked by Henry Morgan and a band of 1,400 men in 1671.
  • Panama was rebuilt in 1673 at a location approximately 5 miles southwest of Old Panama City.
  • The Panama Railroad Company was formed one year before the California Gold Rush.
  • Panama City receives approximately 75 inches of precipitation every year.

Observing Foundation of Old Panama City

This holiday is enjoyed by most Panamanians as a general day off. People spend time with their families, there are parades and festivals, and plenty of street food. People also use the hashtags #PanamaLaViejaDay or #FoundationOfOldPanamaCity on their social media accounts. It’s a day to remember the history of the city and to look forward to Panama City’s future.

Where is it celebrated?
Panama (Common local holidays)
When is it?
This year (2024)
August 15 Thursday
Next year (2025)
August 15 Friday
Last year (2023)
August 15 Tuesday