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Home Panama First Impressions Best mountain areas in Panama

Best mountain areas in Panama

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 Here are some of the best written, accurate and concise observations on mountain areas in Panama that I have ever read. Roberto

(and they were not written by me)

Roberto,
I recently came across your blog and I must say that I am enjoying it. You come across as honest and genuinely helpful, which is why I am writing!
 
My wife and I have really enjoyed our visits to Central America over the past 3 years and we would like to select a property in Panama to purchase when we visit this January. We are interested in one of the following areas: Cerro Azul, Altos de Maria, or El Valle. I would like to offer my take on these areas for your feedback if you would be so kind.
 
The first area is very affordable, and very close to the airport and PC. The drawback is that the foothill areas along the way up are quite shabby and trash strewn. I have also heard that the area around the airport is crime ridden. Amenities are very limited in Cerro Azul itself and being a gated community it is somewhat limited socially.
 
Altos de Maria is medium priced and being a gated community, suffers the same limitations as the first but the surrounding area is not so sketchy.
 
El Valle is the most interesting of the 3 but definitely the most expensive.
 
Are my observations correct? Is there anything else you can add?
 
My thoughts are to buy land and then build when we relocate which won't be for at least another 2 1/2 years. I am a contractor and could supervise construction (at least that is my thoughts)
 
We are very familiar with Santa Clara-we love the quiet little beach and the Villa Botero B&B. Could we take you to dinner when we visit?
 
Thank you,
Jon and Linda O.
PA, USA
 

My response:

 
You are bang on the money. I would add; El Valle has a thriving artist market, a farmers' market, a zoo, a dozen of excellent restaurants, two spas, an Irish pub,
 
sports bars, and many activities such as zip-lines through waterfalls, hot springs, mud baths, and the famous India Dormida - or "Sleeping Indian" mountain to
 
climb. You can rent horses and bicycles to tour El Valle - the second- largest inhabited crater in the world.
 
To my knowledge there is not even a bar in either of the other two communities.
 
 El Valle is also mixture of Panamanian and Expats families -  the others do not have quite as much of a mix. The President and Vice President
 
of Panama both have homes in El Valle - as many wealthy Panamanians like to have a city home, a mountain home and a beach home.
 
It is a matter of what you are looking for. For me, if I wanted to live with only my own kind, I would have stayed home. 

Last Updated on Saturday, 28 August 2010 22:02  

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