Moving away question
I am interviewing soon for a job in Boquete Panama, flying out New Years Day... anyone ever been? Seems like big expat area and a little north agewise of me.. if you've been am I, more my wife and son, going to be bored to tears?
I spent alot of time on bocas del toro, very close to Boquete. I almost moved to Bocas. I spent a day there once, There is a coll little Inn called La Montana or something like that. There used to be a jazz festival there as well, very beautiful area volcanos and a river through town lots of hiking, very safe. didn't spend as much time there as I'd like to have. Best way to get there is SJU to Panama, then Air Panama to Boquete or maybe San Jose and fly Nature Air if they still go there. Big expat community. a mix of many nationalities, mostly Americans, Canadians and Europeans. Haven't been there in a while but it seems like a place that wont change much.
I have spent time in Panama. It is a beautiful and strange place. Very clean (compared to other places in Latin America), good access to groceries and other goods in David near Boquete.
It's the first world superimposed on an ancient native American culture. The indigenous people don't believe anyone but they have ownership rights to land.
Living there could be a great opportunity for your kid to become bilingual.
Panama is a great place. People are hard working and friendly, you can hire a live in maid for $300 a month. A gardener was getting $8 a day a few years ago when we were looking to relocate. Lots of fresh food, medical care is good an inexpensive. Many doctors were trained in US. John Hopkins runs a great hospital in Panama City
Economy is well diversified, banking/finance, agriculture and the Panama Canal
The airport in Panama city has 100 international flights a day.
Boquete is very nice. It is often rated as one of the five best places to retire in the world. The elevation is 3,000 - 4,000 ft so even though you are nine degrees North of the equator the climate is more temperate the STX. Lots of rain, 300" in some parts of the country.
While you can see the Pacific Ocean from Boquete it is over an hour drive to the nearest beach near David.
Boquete is a long drive (5 hours to Panama City) via the Pan American Highway.
Spanish is nice but not necessary. We met people who had lived there for years and spoke only minimal Spanish.
Take a look if you want a beautiful place to live and a great climate. Boguete is cheaper than STX but because of all the expats it is more expensive than other parts of the country.
Just got back from my interview and loved the area. Cooler than i expected. I wore long pants and sleeves daily. The job was offered to me so I think we will be moving soon. They are handling all the legal work for visas so it's one thing I don't have to worry about. There is no direct flight anymore from SJU to PYT. You now have to go through Bogata or go the STT Miami PYT route. The bilingual international school is $110 A month and food costs appeared to be half at Pricesmart in David. Cleaning supplies and processed foods were closer to prices here. Beer and liquor are way cheaper than even here. A case of local Panama or Balboa was under $12 and a local anejo rum was $7.