Trip Start Feb 14, 2005
28Trip End Jun 14, 2005
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Where I stayed
Boquete is up in the hills and includes many coffee plantations, hiking trails, a nice river and is an all around relaxing place to be. There have been many Americans who have moved there to retire, and that was quite obvious.
We found a great place to stay, Isla Verde, owned by a German lady named Eva. Our place had a full kitchen and loft bedroom, and because a mutual friend had sent us there, she gave us $20 off the price. Staying in a nice and clean cabin like this turned out to be even more wonderful because for the four and a half days we were there it continued to downpour like clockwork from lunchtime on
On Monday morning Eva hooked us up with a local guy named Antonio who took us on a wonderful hike up into the hills. We weren't prepared for the fact that it would be two and a half hours straight up and two hours right back down, but the trail was fantastic made up of mud, rocks and water. It was so beautiful. And the trail obviously was infrequently used, maybe only by Antonio and his friends, it was very small, sometimes barely wide enough to walk through. One of the highlights was that when we reached the top we could see both the Pacific Ocean to one side and the Atlantic Ocean to the other. The birds were awesome too, they had beautiful songs that they would sing and at one point we all got in tune with one of the birds and developed a harmony. It was pretty incredible.
Tuesday morning we played tourist and went on a coffee plantation tour. Our guide Hans, a tall Dutchman who has lived in Boquete for 8 years, showed us around at the Kotowa plantation. We were lucky to get a private tour that day, only the two of us were signed up so we had Hans and his humor all to ourselves. He was very informative about the production of coffee (shocking that we live in Seattle and don't know more about coffee production) and we got to taste the beans off the tree and straight out of the roaster. After a couple of sample cups, we were ready for the day.
It was hard to pull ourselves away from Boquete but as usual, there were places to be. We certainly enjoyed our stay, spending afternoons playing cards, reading books, and cooking yummy dinners. It was quite relaxing. Maybe they should call Boquete a Tranquilo Paradise.