Most of the highways in Panama were new and in very good condition, but the road to David was terribly bumpy with lots of construction going on. Even with our comfortable bus and careful driver Jorge, it was a bone-crunching ride. To top it off, I was recovering from pneumonia and pleurisy that I had just a month before the trip, and I felt every bump. Not a fun ride!

Road to David

An escapee! There seemed to be many varieties of cattle along the way. I think this was a Brahman cow:

Brahman cow

Beautiful scenery everywhere you look:

Las Lajas field

We made a stop at a quiet and relaxing hidden gem, a resort called Las Lajas. It was much quieter than the big resort in Bijao, more my style. It’s definitely on my list when I come back again:

Las Lajas resort

We were all on our way to being best buddies by this time:

Las Lajas beach

Everyone was relieved to reach David in time for lunch at a cafeteria and then to check out the shopping. There was a Target looking store, a Costco clone, a Home Depot type store, and lots of other shopping. I noticed a lot of merchandise was made in China and prices didn’t seem to be much different from the US. A few things like furniture seemed to be even a little more expensive. There were restaurants like TGIF, KFC and McD’s, too.

Lots of conveniences but oh the heat! It seemed even hotter than Panama City.

We finally arrived in Boquete late in the afternoon. We were all happy to get up into the mountains where the temperature was cooler and the humidity was lower.

Boquete entrance road

We would be staying at El Oasis Hotel during the rest of the tour while we just went on day trips:

Oasis front

Boquete is about 3900 feet above sea level. In a land of fine coffees, it is known as having some of the best coffee available. Every day has a spring-like climate, usually in the 70s, and fresh, healthy mountain air. There are plenty of outdoor and hiking activities. And as I found out the next day when I started to explore the town, the people living there are very relaxed and friendly.