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Boquete, Panama is a beautiful town set in the highlands of Panama. It’s such a unique part of Panama to visit, as it sits on the countries only volcano, produces the only coffee, and is also home to a pretty epic castle you can sleep in. And yes, it’s affordable to stay there. Read on to find out where to stay in Boquete and the best things to do there.
Where to stay in Boquete
Bambuda Castle is one of the coolest accommodations I have ever stayed at.
The castle was built by a man who promised his wife they would live in a castle, and so they did – talk about relationship goal! After a while they decided that they didn’t need that much space and downgraded to something more modest. The castle was put on the market and quickly sold to two Canadian boys who converted it into a hotel/hostel.
Staying at this castle feels like a 5-star hotel but the prices are so reasonable. It is stunning inside and out, extremely clean, has gorgeous views from the balcony, an indoor pool and hot tub. And you can get all this for as low as 14$ USD!
They have a restaurant on site and every night host a delicious family dinner which gives you a chance to talk to other travellers. The only downside to the hostel is that it’s a bit far from town, but you can get a taxi for $2-4 or walk 45 minutes in. Or just stay there forever because why would you want to leave a castle?
What to do in Boquete
Hikes in Boquete
Boquete has a ton of hiking that you can do. It is possible to hike the volcano there but it involves hiking six hours in the dark. One of the best day hikes you can do is the lost waterfall hike which takes you to some beauty spots.
Visit a coffee plantation
The landscape of Boquete provides a great place to grow coffee given the rich soil from the Volcano. I visited the Don Pepe coffee plantation which is a locally owned plant that produces extremely high quality coffee. The area itself doesn’t produce an impressive amount of coffee, so they focus on higher quality such as Geisha coffee which is popular in Japan.
The tour of the plantation was fascinating. They show you the complete process of coffee manufacturing from growing the seed to roasting the beans. I had no idea that so much work went into making coffee. I now have a deeper appreciation for the sweet nectar. A coffee plant there can take 3-7 years before it is ready to be used!
After we saw the coffee plants outside, the guide took us inside to show how the coffee beans are peeled, cleaned, dried and sorted. At the end of the tour we got to sample a bunch of the coffee that they produce which was delicious! It was so cool because a buyer from the Netherlands was at the facility tasting coffee with the owner to import back. I got to watch a proper coffee tasting and also learn a little about worldwide coffee trade.
Where to go after Boquete
Wondering where to go after Boquete? If you’re heading South don’t miss the San Blas Islands tour from Panama City to Cartagena, Colombia. If you’re going North, take a trip to Bocas Del Toro – a beautiful island in Panama.
Between all the coffee and hospitality, I throughly enjoyed my time in Panama. The people here are so nice and helpful. During one of the bumpy bus rides my stuff kept falling forward out of my seat, but this man sitting near me would repeatedly go and pick it up before I even had a chance. On another bus getting into Panama City I didn’t have the bus card to get on the bus, so a local swiped in for me, then called the hostel to figure out which stop I should get off at.
What’s the coolest accommodation you’ve ever stayed in?