May 5, 2014

Foodie Destination and Getaway in Panama, La Loma Jungle Lodge & Chocolate Farm

Panama is a beautiful country in Central America bordered by Costa Rica, Caribbean Sea, Columbia and Pacific Ocean. The country is most famous for one of the world's man-made wonders: the Panama canal. For such a small country, slightly larger than the state of West Virginia, it is tremendously diverse. On the Caribbean side is the famous clear blue water filled with star fish, coral and sea turtles making it a popular destination for divers. The Pacific side is a hot spot for surfers and home to the country's capital, Panama City. Head east to towards Costa Rica and you run into the highest mountain in Panama, Volcano Baru, where Geisha, some of the most expensive coffee is grown. 

However, no trip to Panama should be complete without a visit to one of the most unique places in the country: La Loma. It is a perfect foodie destination, romantic getaway, and retreat to unplug (no internet access in any cabin). This 50 acre working chocolate farm has many of the wildlife people hope to see Panama and is only a short boat ride or hike away from popular activities. Or spend the day relaxing on the farm swinging in a hammock over looking the Caribbean or laying out on the beach. Hungry? Enjoy farm fresh dining breakfast, lunch and dinner. Every meal is freshly prepared using ingredients from the farm and locally caught fish. 

La Loma grows everything ideal for the climate. Want fresh coconut juice after snorkeling? One of the farm hands will be happy cut down a fresh coconut for you. Breakfast always includes fresh juice made from fruit grown on the farm. Passion fruit, star fruit, if you see it, you will likely get to taste it. Wake up every morning to freshly brewed coffee in a thermos and delicious moist muffins every morning quietly place outside your cabin. Most cabins on the farm are a short hike to the main lodge where meals are served. Carefully read through the information booklet on their website to make sure you fully understand what you are in for. Beware, depending on the time of your visit, sand fleas could be out in full force and biting all day and night, such was the case during our visit. Although the sand fleas were annoying and unbearable at one point, the experience and memories over shadowed the bugs. We were staying in open cabins in the middle of the jungle after all. 

Here are some photo highlights from La Loma:

La Loma is home to all kinds of animals. Dogs, goat, chickens, sloths and more.
Breakfast served daily including cocoa beans and freshly squeezed juices from fruit grown on the farm.
Every morning around 7:30am, a staff member from La Loma will quietly leave a box of hot coffee and freshly baked muffins outside your cabin to enjoy when you wake up.
Three course dinner every night with specialty cocktails that start at $4.
Menu changes nightly and usually includes freshly caught fish as the main course.
Miracle berries are grown on the farm and available for guests to sample.
Lunch usually includes freshly baked rolls and cookies that changes daily.
La Loma
Bocas Del Torro, Panama

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