A Life Overseas In Panama Immerses You In Nature, While Still Close to Civilization
Many people these days are looking for second homes overseas. Whether you’re attracted to a lower cost of living, a warm tropical climate, friendly local cultures or all of the above, you’ll find that Panama is one of the most welcoming locales for living abroad. As author Miriam Butterman writes in Moon Living Abroad in Panama, “With one deep breath, life so vividly defined by lush sensibilities can fill you with wonder and mystery. Maybe no one can say for sure what it is about Panama that pulls us here. The real mystery is yours to discover.”
We’ve been covering aspects of life in and around Isla Palenque and why this is one of the best places on the planet to live. Isla Palenque offers the chance to return to a more natural state of being, all without sacrificing the comforts of civilization. At the same time, the community’s impact on the local ecosystem is minimized by carefully implemented construction and resort management policies. Our neighbors, the abundant whales, dolphins, sea turtles, birds, monkeys and countless other species appreciate the care we put into our sustainable development plan for the continued health of their populations.
It’s easy to think of Isla Palenque as just a remote island in the middle of nowhere. The beauty of it is that it only FEELS that way. The bustling coastal city of David is a quick boat ride away and you’ll find many modern conveniences there, including an airport. Unlike other Central American retirement locales, like say Costa Rica, the roads and other supporting infrastructure here are decent. Panama uses the U.S. dollar, further facilitating the cost of purchasing goods or importing them from abroad. No messy, ever-changing exchange rates!
Panama’s Chiriqui region, in particular, encompasses much of what has drawn people to neighboring Costa Rica for so many years, and yet it remains a well-kept secret. Connected to the coast by a good highway is the area surrounding Volcan Baru, with its coffee, flower, strawberry and horse farms reminiscent of a tropical Switzerland. You can hike the cloud forests and stay in wonderful local lodges. Other activities include bird-watching, white-water rafting, and exploring several small volcanic lagoons. So there’s plenty to keep you busy and provide escape from the more tropical coastal lowlands while you enjoy the pleasant alpine weather. Keep in mind the average elevation here on the volcano’s slopes is 4,500 feet. Baru itself rises over 11,000 feet.
Feeling like you need a dose of civilization? Bustling Panama City is only a 30-minute-flight from David. Truly an international city, this crossroads between north and south boasts excellent restaurants, historical attractions and modern amenities. The Biodiversity Museum, designed by Frank Gehry, is due to open in 2012. After taking in the sites and enjoying the action in Panama City, there’s nothing quite like coming home to your jungle beach oasis. To some the quick flight and boat ride back home may sound like a commute. We like to think of it more as just another part of the adventure.
So we can’t really say what it is for sure that draws us to this magical place. But we’re starting to get an idea.