Boquete or Volcan, What's Your Preference?

Volcan or Boquete, Which Was Right for Us?
Some people don't even realize that there are other places to live in Panama other than Panama City and Boquete for expats. We want to get the word out about Volcan (and any other expat city)! Where would you pick?

I lived in Volcan for many years but I really like Boquete also.

Volcan lacks a Central Park and that makes a difference. It’s not a walkabout environment.

If anyone is interested in living in the highlands of Panama, they should check out El Valle. It is 2 hours from Panama city and is probably the most beautiful place in Panama. It has around 150 expats from around the world and is definitely the most friendly and welcoming of the expat communities. There is also good shopping, banks, and public service there.

The possible disadvantage are that it is a bit warmer than the other 2 towns-it is at 2000ft instead of 3-4,000ft. Also, if you want a good, private hospital, you will have to travel to the city. There is also no private schools here.

As for expat activities, we have a weekly get together at a restaurant, biweekly trivia, Spanish lessons, and several regular volunteer oportunities.

is according if you speak spanish and how much you value gringo company ,, the small community of cerro cama " bed mountain " outside chorrerra is close to lake gatun , arenosa , and chorrerra ,, if you like to garden , fish, swim , snorkeler etc, and want to live cheap is a great little place 20 miles from the Caribbean is nice and cool most days and night s check it out ,, 20 minutes from major city of chorrerra and an hour from panama city    PS  i do not care for volcan nor boquette nor bocas del torro ,, nor altus de maria , nor cerro azul ,, but love el vallee for many different reasons ,,and i have been here for 17 years

Wolfman - your points are good ones, although a newcomer will have to make those discoveries him/herself. Question - are there opportunities for rental accommodation in Cerro Cama? I have not heard of it.

My husband & I are making our first visit in October but we’re very interested in Volcan! From what we can see in our research, it has a similar climate to Boquete but a better mix of Panamanians & expats. We really do want to experience the culture, learn the language & immerse ourselves in Panamanian life — not just bubblewrap ourselves in transplanted western culture! What’s the point of leaving the U.S. if we’re just going to maintain the same habits & culture? Anyway, that’s our opinion & what we’re seeking!

If you have stayed in either it ought to be evident one has a far less gringo influence than the other. l like the proximity to CR in Vol and have spanish do not have the $$ for boquete. There are far more work a day amenities too. Which one falls on side of your economics ought to be your answer. l have figured out l am not wealthy and were l might live in ac comfort in PC ride in expensive autos to the beach et all.

I mostly agree with the wolfman on his take of Vulcan and Boquete......for various reasons, but I dont know this area of Cerro Cama......Would have to check it out.....But I certainly dont see being close to Chorrera as any kind of advantage at all........Has got to be the ugliest little city in all of Panama with horrible sprawl of tacky tiny new urbanizations.......But in itself Cerro Cama may well be a hidden jewel......El Valle is probably still the all around best bet all things considered......I live at 2200 ft elev in Chiriqui and think its perfect.....surrounded by rivers and waterfalls.....35 mins from David, the fastest growing city in central america, but in no way the and poor urban planning....No asthetic quality outside of Parque Cervantes............The nice thing aobut El Valle is the proximity to the beautiful beaches down below.....the Gold Coast of Panama right there at your fingertips.......Its more Hawaiian style....Live at higher elev but still only 20 min from the beach....Thats a huge advantage.......but that windy road gettin up there might wear on ya after awhile.......

I had commented to a resident there that the road up to el valle would be fantastic if I owned a motorcycle. What a thrill ride! Then he said “in the heavy rain?” Brought me to my senses . . .

SunsetSteve :

I had commented to a resident there that the road up to el valle would be fantastic if I owned a motorcycle. What a thrill ride! Then he said “in the heavy rain?” Brought me to my senses . . .

Or a major medical emergency!

I can say that Panama has different expat attractions, but you choice would depend in if you like the city, the beach or the mountains. Based on that, expats are split in Volcan, Boquete, Cerro Punta,  El Valle de Anton, Altos del Maria and Cerro Azul (for mountain weather). Coronado, Las Tablas, Pedasí, Bocas del Toros, Isla Coiba, Portobelo, Isla Grande, and Taboga (for beaches). And Panama City, of course for the city.

Answering your question about Boquete vs Volcan is that Boquete is a little more developed than Volcan, since expats started to moved more to that place. Why? because the weather is pretty great, it is not hot and not that cold. Volcan is a little more cold, but because of the global warming, I consider it is not has cold has as 15-20 years ago.

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