In my opinion, you need to stop at Caye Caulker, BZ. You can take the water taxi from Belize City to the island. Lovely, laid back place with sand streets. Very small. Lots of young people from all over and we met several single females. Spanish won't help because they all speak English (all may be a stretch but that's what they teach in schools).
Our web site has some pictures from three different areas in Belize.
While in Panama check out Bocas Del Torro. Iy is on the northern coast of Panama near to Costa Rica. I found it very beautiful.
If you are going into South America, fly from Panama City to Cartagena in Colombia and check out the walled city of Cartagena and the Islas De Rosario off the Cartagena coast. The old city of Cartagena is world heritage listed. Safety is no problem there as there are tourist police in Cartagena around the tourist areas. I was in Cartagena about 5 weeks ago and I truly loved it and had a great time there. And the locals there are very open, friendly and helpful.
Colombia, with some of the friendliest and hardest working people in South America, is getting ready to 'take off' as a prime travel destination. I witnessed the same phenomenon here in Central America after peace treaties were signed in the 1990s..go first to Cartagena and Santa Marta and if wishing to see other cities (this is quite a large country) take a couple of internal flights, that can be booked even before you depart. If you have Colombian friends and speak Spanish you will be very fortunate.
StIll though COLOMBIA is very dangerous!!!!!!!!!1
is that not true david!!!!!!!!!!!