In the fall of 2017, my husband I travelled from Northern Ontario, Canada to Boquete, Panama for almost a month stay. We were exploring the opportunity of living abroad in Boquete, Panama for an extended period of time.

living abroad in Boquete Panama, map of Panama

Boquete, Panama, a beautiful quaint town of 20,000 people is located in the province of Chiriqui, Panama is located 3900 feet above sea level. It is a 35-minute drive up the Cordillera de Talamanca mountain range from David (pronounced Daveed), Panama’s second-largest city and 37 miles from the Costa Rico border. David is the capital of the Province of Chiriqui, with 150,000 people and a major airport.

Boquete Panama on the Caldera River

 

 

 

 

 

Post Office in Boquet, Panama

Boquete is in the lush green rain forest mountain highlands on the Caldera River and surrounded by agriculture. Most of it is coffee plantations but there are vegetables, fruit, dairy, and meat farms too. Chickens and roosters run around everywhere in this third world country that is predominately a Spanish speaking Catholic country.

This situation has been solved somewhat with a few company’s setting up delivery services using a US address and bulk shipping to Boquete but it still takes a long time.

7. Food

Food, for the most part, is fairly plain. Corn, rice fish, and chicken are the staples. BUT you will find many, many different coffee brands and they are all very good. Baked goods are not good because the flour is different.

8. Coffee, coffee, and more coffee

Coffee fincas, which is defined as farm, ranch or plantation, are very prevalent in Panama, especially in the western mountainous areas. The worlds number one coffee at all the big worldwide coffee competitions comes from this area. It is called “Geisha”.

There are numerous very good speciality coffee here and each has its own nuances and flavours.

9. Get your “calm” on

The one thing that is very evident in Panama is the laid back, in no rush lifestyle. Nothing moves fast. You will often hear people asking when they can expect an answer or a service to be completed or even when a project will be done and the response is “manana”. This means tomorrow but tomorrow could be the next day, or three days or longer. It is not definitive at all and makes you get your “calm” on because that is the lifestyle. That certainly helped us relax and enjoy life more.

We are now back to Canada

When I started this blog we were in the middle of returning to Canada. As I mentioned above the cost of the exchange on our money was getting to be prohibitive. We decided to not waste more money.

Would I ever go back to Panama? Most definitely. It is a beautiful third world country with fabulous people and traditions, beautiful beaches and countrysides, hiking trails and interesting creations of nature to visit and don’t forget the fresh fruit, vegetables, meat and poultry.

Return from Panama

We left with 4 large suitcases, a personal bag each and carry-on each and returned with the same.

As much of a process as this was to declutter and rehome our possessions prior to moving to Panama, we are now re-building a home. It is an interesting process having lived with very little for a year.

We were given a bed, linens, some basic dishes and table with chairs. We have purchased a few things like a television and a comfy chair.

I am not in a rush to acquire “stuff” just to have it nor am I willing to spend a lot of furniture and such.

Watch for how I decorate and acquire the basics over the next couple of months to a year. Would love to hear your ideas and suggestions.

Let me know in comments if you think you could go live in another country for a time and experience everyday life there.

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Daniela
Daniela
January 28, 2020 5:49 pm

Living in Boquete, Panama looked like a wonderful adventure and I am sure there are lots of travelers interested in your experience in Panama.

For people interested in travelling or settling to this destination, your website would provide extensive information born from experience, which is the best advice anyone could ask for.

Very informative website. 

Jim
Jim
January 28, 2020 5:34 pm

I am not one for travel, and I am a homebody.  Your article brought to life a place I will never see.  I loved the imagery, the pictures and the breakdown of the different areas you researched.  You outlined the steps you took and the process very well.  The interesting facts about Panama was a nice touch.  Best of luck and lots of happiness in your life abroad!

Andreas
Andreas
January 28, 2020 5:34 pm

Great stuff, are you living here today? it looks like a paradise!! I would love to have a life like this and just live my life as I want!

How are the people and how is the money down there?

I do not know where I want to move but I Really want to move 

Jake
Jake
January 28, 2020 5:35 pm

Hi, It sounds like a very great place to go and visit. I really like nature, and something like this A Unforgettable experience. Being surrounded by the mountains like that, and such a small number of people residing there. It sounds like great place to relax and connect with nature.

Feji ben
Feji ben
January 28, 2020 5:32 pm

Hello there,thanks for this article it would be of great help to the public as it has been of help to me.i have a lot about this particular place but I haven’t read so much detail about it,I swear it’s worth visiting on a vacation as there’s a lot to see especially the sea and monthain view.