6 Oct 2011

Bocas del Toro

Bocas del Toro is a rather special coastal spot in the very north east of Panama near the border with Costa Rica.
It consists of an odd shaped main land (very Caribbean chill compared to Panama City) and beautiful tropical islands (very Caribbean chill compared to the mainland all of 2kms away) with lovely wooden houses built on stilts right in the sea painted all the Caribbean pastel colours of the rainbow. The local population is a varied mix of mestizo that have developed their own English and Spanish patois - just as colourful as the houses.
We stayed a few nights on the mainland at Casa Max (highly recommended for your next visit) and in a hostel on the island of Bastimentos with a fab view and a great group of people.
Bruce for example from Texas who lived 24 hrs a day in the bar drinking ready mixed cans of Cuba Libre from about 1pm when he awoke in the hammock (in the bar) to early each morning when he fell back into the hammock, more by habit than judgement. This was his way of killing time (several weeks so far) whilst lawyers completed the purchase of 7 hectares of beach front jungle that he and Gavin will turn into an adventure/hostel/organic farm/jungle experience for mentally and physically disabled visitors. We had great fun putting the world to rights and listening to Gavin's stories about his 3 tours in Iraq, various bullet wounds and being blown up twice. He also had a very serious looking knife that would appear from no where whenever a tasty star fruit needed dealing with!

And then there was Zanna and Joel from Sweden who ran the bar and cooked amazing food. They arrived on the island as visitors 7 weeks ago and decided to stay, building the bar and entertaining anyone and everyone. We were only there for two nights but met and became good friends with a dozen people from the 4 corners of the planet who like us were just passing through - lots of stories, many laughs, fabulous memories - thank you Zanna and Joel.

Oh and we did explore the island a bit, a wild jungle path to get to a beautiful deserted beach (apart from the killer sand flies) and a brilliant snorkelling trip to a coral reef (saw lion fish and an octopus) into the mangroves which was dark, murky, weird and wonderful and a second reef full of fish and a school of dolphins!

Back on the mainland we rented a scooter and zipped around finding yet another 5 ish km deserted beach. The sand was very similar to that found on the south coast of the UK, but there the similarities ended...

1 comment:

  1. Oh guys it sounds like you are having so much fun! And you are looking so chilled! Please keep on sending us the stories with the pics. Lots of lurve... An