Boquete Panama valley of flowers and eternal spring

Angelo Martinez

By Angelo Martinez

Are you contemplating the perks of a retiree’s lifestyle in Boquete? Intrigued by the renowned “Feria de las Flores y el Café”? Eager to explore hiking and trekking opportunities in the breathtaking mountain terrains? Or perhaps, you’re drawn to the allure of natural thermal springs?

Discover Boquete, a gem nestled in the province of Chiriqui, Panama. Ideal for those already relishing retirement or nearing its threshold, this post is your guide to the myriad of experiences Boquete offers.

Boquete is not just a destination; it’s a promise of a wholesome, vibrant, and cost-effective haven. Let’s embark on a captivating journey to uncover the charm of Boquete!

Location, climate and history of Boquete

Nestled within the province of Chiriqui, the district of Boquete sits at a lofty altitude of 4,000 feet. Its western position places it closer to Costa Rica than to Panama City, the country’s capital. Since 1911, following a legislative recognition, Boquete has proudly stood as one of Panama’s distinguished districts.

Home to about 20,000 residents, including a couple of thousand expats, Boquete’s community spreads across six distinct townships: Alto Boquete, Bajo Boquete, Jaramillo, Los Naranjos, Caldera, and Palmira. The heart of the district beats in Bajo Boquete, where you’ll find the central hub of governance, healthcare, hospitality, and financial services.

A common question among those considering overseas retirement is about the climate. In Boquete the climate is ideal, spring-like weather all year, with reasonable daytime temperatures, cool breezes, and chilly nights. Temperatures typically hover between 66°F and 78°F. Rarely do they dip below 57°F or peak above 82°F, ensuring a consistently mild and agreeable environment, ideal for the region’s mountainous landscape.

In Boquete nature puts on a special light display almost every afternoon. The phenomenon, bajareque, is a fine mist along with north winds, a mist so fine is barely dampens the skin. These delicate drops of moisture are what allow glorious rainbows to appear over the town nearly every day.

Boquete’s skies are often a canvas of clouds, with June being the cloudiest and January the clearest. It’s a place where some feel they can almost touch the clouds, a surreal experience unique to this high-altitude haven.

Ever fancied such a celestial encounter? Choosing Boquete, one of Panama’s highest city for your retirement, might just make that dream a reality. And as for the origin of the word ‘Boquete,’ it’s derived from a term for a boxed-in valley, aptly reflecting its unique location.

Boquete, Panama

Coffee, flowers, and more

Boquete is also lush green hills and great masses of red and purple flowers. This is coffee country, set in cloud forest surroundings, at an altitude of about 4,000 feet above sea level. The area encompasses Evenings are cool in and Conditions have proven ideal for the production of high-grade Arabic coffee, and producers have received many international awards in recent years.

The scramble for property around the coffee town began in 2001, when Boquete was designated one of the world’s top retirement havens. Since then, foreign residents have bought small farms (coffee wasn’t doing too well for a while), which they subdivided into housing lots. Boquete land prices are as high as $80 a square meter today, compared with just $5 four years ago.

The perfect place for an ideal life

If you like cooking, finding the ingredients at the markets is simple and inexpensive; Chiriqui is the garden of Panama. There are also four supermarkets in Boquete. Two shopping malls are under construction. Most things are within easy reach of those living in Boquete.

There is easy access to Panama from the U.S., and direct flights to seven major cities. Two domestic airlines fly between Panama City and David, the closest city to Boquete, in about an hour.

Boquete: lush hills and varied scenery. Environmentalists, naturalists and others will find plenty to keep them occupied in Boquete. Adventures might include horseback riding, or hiking to the top of Volcan Baru, the majestic and long-dormant volcano from where, on a clear day, you can see the Pacific in one direction and the Caribbean in the other, one of the few places in the world where that is possible.

Birders might search for the elusive quetzal and its striking plumage, or take a canopy tour and see things from the perspective of the birds high in the trees. There are natural thermal wells, bathing in which is said to treat various ills. Tour a coffee plantation, where you will see Guaymies Indians in their colorful traditional costume harvesting the beans. The more adventurous might want to try river rafting. There are trips of varying difficulty, depending on experience.

Boquete river

In Boquete you can enjoy a healthy life

At any stage of our life, health is one of the most precious assets. Boquete promotes a lifestyle that is beneficial to your physical and emotional health. For example, doctors recommend exercise at this stage. Moderate walks through Finca Lérida or Cerro La Piedra de Lino Trail are perfect for strengthening your health.

In Boquete, you will enjoy another even more important advantage: breathing pure air, unlike the cities that have industrial zones and polluted the air. Vegetation covers a large part of the valley, so air quality is guaranteed.

Another activity your body might be most grateful for is a visit to the Hot Spring Caldera in Boquete. It is made up of several springs whose temperature exceeds 100° F. The experience can be more relaxing if you visit the hot spring on a rainy day.

The Boquete Library offers you the opportunity to cultivate your soul through reading, as well as the space to meet people with similar interests to yours. Access to its facilities and books is free of charge. You can take advantage of the more than 26,000 books available in Spanish, English, German and French.

Boquete river

In Boquete you can lead an entertaining life.

It’s time to say goodbye to boredom and welcome fun and entertainment.

Do you know the famous Flower and Coffee Fair?

Every year, from the 11th to the 21st of January, Boquete celebrates one of the most important fairs in the country. It is a celebration of the precious coffee and the beautiful flowers of the region. During the festival, the numerous visitors from home and abroad buy handicrafts, buy plants, taste sweets and get to know the local products.

While the hosts ensure that the streets are filled with the color of flowers and the aroma of coffee.

There are also a variety of places for excursions. One of the most fun is a visit to Finca Casanga to learn all about the process of growing, harvesting and processing coffee. It is worth remembering that Panama produces one of the best coffees in the world.

You can also schedule a hike through the Cloud Forest. And if you prefer to move faster, you can take an electric bike tour through other colorful areas of Boquete.

Living in Boquete is still affordable

Boquete offers an appealing cost of living, especially when compared to the higher average salaries in the United States or Europe. With Panamanians earning around $400 monthly and still enjoying a comfortable lifestyle, expatriates can find Boquete particularly affordable for retirement.

A key draw is Panama’s pensionado program, offering retirees numerous benefits, including tax exemptions and various discounts on medical services, hotels, entertainment, and more. For detailed insights on the pensionado program click here.

Walk the narrow streets

Only by walking through the picturesque narrow streets, visiting the Indian market, and stopping by a stall to drink hot chocolate while you admire the craftsmanship of the indigenous artisans, can you begin to appreciate Boquete. Take in the great variety of flowers, breathe that clear fresh air, and you understand that Boquete is the perfect place to live.

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