Boquete

Boquete is a village in Chiriqui province, in the Pacific West of Panama.

Understand

For some information, there is the Official Authority of Tourism, Panama (ATP) located a few minutes drive up the road back towards David, next to the Kotowa Coffee Shop, not in downtown Boquete. They have a small museum including some old photos of Boquete, as well as a beautiful view of the valley of Boquete.


The main features of Boquete include:

Up until the early 2000’s, Boquete was a sleepy, almost completely unknown and unremarkable agriculture-based mountain village with almost zero tourism and very few people living in the area whose families hadn’t been there for generations. That changed with a series of events starting with the creation of Valle Escondido, a large residential development aimed at expats. Right around the same time, several magazines devoted to people considering becoming expats began to flourish, with one of the most popular very regularly touting Boquete as “the land of eternal springtime”.

As a result of the publicity and the natural beauty and temperate climate of Boquete, it became, arguably, the best-known North American expat destination in the world, as a large expat community developed. That community now dominates the town, which, depending on what you’re looking for, could be good or bad. A most comprehensive, organized treatment of Boquete can be found in Best Places in the World to Retire: Boquete.

Get in

Get around

Boquete is a very cozy mountain village so you won't have problems exploring the city on foot. The central plaza, in the middle of town on Main Street, is where the David-Boquete bus drops off incoming visitors and locals. For the smell and feel of the area there are scooter rentals at $25.0US for 4 hours as your means of transportation. In the surroundings you can also use taxi (one dollar brings you quite far) or the local area vans/buses which leave from the La Bruna Super Market 200 meters up the main road from the bus stop. Each local van/bus has written on the front window the areas that they cover, which are normally large loops up in the mountains in areas of Bajo Mono, Alto Quiel, Arco Iris, or Volcancito. There are also many tour companies that offer guided trips through the mountains to see waterfalls, coffee plantations, the cloud forest, white water rafting, and the Volcan Baru National Park. But if you want to rent a car and explore the area around Boquete, a four wheel drive may be safer, because the mountain roads do get washed out. Also be aware that there are no safe shoulders and no place for pedestrians to walk but the highway, so take caution traveling at night.

See

Boquete is known as the "Valley of the Flowers". Nestled in the western highlands of Panama, near the border to Costa Rica, Boquete shares some of the same mountain ranges and some of the incredible wildlife and rain forests. However, because it is not as well known, and a 'road less traveled', prices are lower, and it is not as commercial. You can hike for 1/2 a day, or all day, and still have a rare chance to see the resplendent quetzal, or a howler monkey in the wild.

The Boquete Valley is rich with agriculture as well; strawberries, oranges, and coffee come from this region. There are two fairs to celebrate its floral culture. The Festival of Flowers and Coffee is for 2 weeks between January 12th and the 22th (the dates change sometimes by a few days) and the Expos Orchid Fair in March.

Adventure travel, which includes whitewater rafting, zip lining, ATV and jeep tours, cloud forest trekking, horseback riding, rock climbing and deep water soloing, is a key reason that Boquete, a fairly small town, is growing in popularity for European, American, Latino, and Asian travelers.

Boquete is known as a prime coffee-growing region, with many farms exporting high-end coffee to Europe and Asia. The famous 'geisha' coffee that was sold at auction for $130 a pound can be found growing on the rich volcanic slopes.

Volcan Baru, Panama's highest point, is literally the easiest place in the world to see both of the world's great oceans, on a clear day. It's a tough climb that can be done by hiking or jeep tour.

Plaza Los Establos, located on main street just south of the Main Square, is a nice shopping area with lots of little stores to browse through. Boquete Outdoor Adventures, Kotowa Coffee Shop, Habla Ya Spanish School, and the Transport Company (to Bocas), as well as several small family shops with eclectic souvenirs and great deals are all located in the Plaza.

Because of its temperate climate, moderate prices and relaxed living, it has also become a favorite with expats and retirees.

Do

Whitewater Rafting in Boquete Panama
Horseback Riding in the Mountains of Boquete
Entrance Sign for the Volcan Baru National Park
Hot Springs pool in Boquete
Yellow Jeep Tours crossing river on the way to the Caldera Hot Springs

Boquete tour operators:

Eat

This is the bread basket of the country, so the food that is served in the restaurants is very fresh, and quite varied, reflecting its early European beginning and its gaining international popularity.

Drink

Sleep

There are several inexpensive hostels around and within a few blocks the central park.

Enjoy the peace, privacy and serenity of our unique location. Better yet, it all comes with spectacular ‘straight-on’ views of Volcan Baru, at 3,475 mt. (10,750 ft.), Panama’s highest peak. 49.

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This article is issued from Wikivoyage - version of the Wednesday, December 30, 2015. The text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share Alike but additional terms may apply for the media files.