Friday, 25 October 2013

In the highlands

The Captain's Boquete buddy.

I'm a bit slow on the draw regarding this post, but I wanted to share the pictures from our adventures in the Panamanian town of Boquete, up in the western highlands.  We spent 4 days there, enjoying cooler temperatures than we've had on the coast.

Boquete is well-known as a retirement destination for ex-pats, mostly Americans. The town can be divided into three camps, the Panamanians, the gringo residents, and the tourists that swing through for adventures like climbing the volcano and hiking local trails as a complement to their beach-side adventures elsewhere. As a result there is a strong tourist infrastructure including nice places to stay and eat.

Looking back into the valley where Boquete is situated.

The lovely view at our hostel.

Also an amenity of our hostel! We spent a fun afternoon sitting here in the rain.
Since we were playing tourist anyway, I decided I wanted an experience that you can't get on the boat - so we booked a half day tour including horseback riding and then a visit to the local hot springs. I've been riding maybe ten times in my life, but always enjoyed it.  The Captain had never been, but put on his game face and off we went.

Murphy, the horse I left the stable riding.  He wasn't so keen on me; he really wanted to be relaxing somewhere else, so eventually I switched horses with our trail guide.

I'm in the middle of the picture, blue shirt, light coloured horse. This horse was called Lousia and she was always up for being in front. We rode on a piece of property that had been a ranch and then a hotel.  It had lovely rolling hills, which was more fun with the horses than it would have been if we were walking.

You can see that the Captain is sorta having fun - he did remark that it was similar to sailing - pull the jib sheet / rein if you want to turn - but that a motorcycle always listens and never stops to eat grass.
After getting down off the horses and trying to stand upright again, we were off to visit the local hot springs. After months of living on a boat, it does seem like we were missing the bathtub, given that we opted for the hot tub and hot springs when we had the chance.
Boquete gets lots of rain this time of the year, and our guide warned us that he has seen this river rise over all the rocks right to the edge of the foliage in a flash flood.  He never lets people wade in it after a storm.

The Captain, enjoying a land adventure.

An old farmhouse on the property where the hot spings were located.  It included ferocious geese that told the Captain loud and clear that he was not allowed any closer!  (We have braved the high seas, but were daunted by geese.)

The hot springs were tiny little pools that smelled vaguely sulpherish. We sat in them for a while, but because of our vigorous exercise earlier, we had to go cool down in the river. (No, it hadn't rained yet, we were fine.)

Other then pictures of fresh baked bread from the bakery in town, you've seen the highlights of our Boquete adventures. We've been back on the boat in Bocas del Toro for a while now, but we did leave the marina earlier this week and have been slowly cruising about the archipelago, looking for spots with nice breezes and no bugs.


  1. It looks really good place, countryside places are always good have so much calmness. I sometimes want to spend time at such places. Thanks for sharing it