Cambutal is a small, rustic fishing village in the province of Los Santos, Panama across the Pacific Ocean in the Azuero Peninsula.
One of Panama’s greatest assets is its beaches not far from the city on the Pacific coast. The famous of all is Bocas Del Toro on the Caribbean coast which you can enjoy surfing, swimming, and fishing. But, there are lesser known beaches such as Cambutal that features remote beaches and tranquil atmosphere.
Retire in Cambutal
The town of Cambutal is surrounded by rolling countryside, with pristine black-sand beaches and great surfing spots. The place consists of mostly Panamanians from different regions, and a few full-time, and part time expats, that live near the beachfront, and also in surrounding hills. Spanish is the primary language in Cambutal, but it is common to hear English spoken particularly around hotel and restaurant areas.
A lot of people living in Panama City visit Cambutal to unwind or enjoy many outdoor activities.
The beaches in Cambutal offer surfers with good swells, which range from beginner to advance. Since fishing is popular here, you’re certain to see pangas launched from the shores every morning. In a few remote beaches, you can even see sea turtles laying their eggs around the sand.
Forestal La Tronosa is a large protected forests and jungle reserves located in the area. Different plants and wildlife found in this reserve including white tailed deer, green tailed iguana and rabbit. There are no paved roads in this area to remain its natural and undeveloped state for future generations. To visit the waterfalls and secluded beaches during the rainy season, a 4×4 vehicle and a guide are strongly recommended.
Lifestyle in Cambutal
4x4s are the most common mode of transportation for expats when going into the areas where there are no paved roads outside of the village. If you want to live a simple, healthy and slower-paced life, then Cambutal is the best place for you. Many people visit here for scenic surroundings, fresh clean air, no pollution, lack of crowds, and a lot of outdoor activities. The most popular activities include off-roading in a 4×4 vehicle, horseback riding, watching turtle hatching, or hiking to many beautiful areas and waterfalls. The unspoiled beauty of beaches are truly relaxing and the beachfront are not crowded so you have plenty of room to lay down your blanket and enjoy the magnificent views of the Pacific Ocean. You can’t find any big box stores within the village, but larger stores are simply a one-and-a-half hours’ drive away in Las Tablas.
The Hotel Playa Cambutal (www.hotelplayacambutal.net), which is set on beautiful and unspoiled black sand beach with tropical forests and green mountains as a backdrop, have 10 ocean-view rooms and a relaxing, refreshing pool steps from the water’s edge. Other hotels include Hotel Casa Cambutal (www.casacambutal.com), the upscale yoga sanctuary, Sansara Surf as well as the Yoga resort (www.sansararesort.com).
Cost of Living in Cambutal
The choices in real estate in front or near the beach in Cambutal are limited, this is because of the lack of available land in the area. However, you can still get up to 20 acres of land away from the beach, which also have electric power but you will most likely require you to drill a well for water. Just remember to choose your location very wisely since the close proximity of the mountains and the great volume of rain received can usually cause flooding in lower areas. All in all, the prices of homes in Cambutal are much lower compared to the other beach areas around Panama, and you could buy a very moderate house for only about $200,000.
Fresh foods and restaurants are inexpensive in Cambutal, and many small restaurants offer great home-cooked meals. There are many restaurants around and they vary in terms of Italian, Chinese, and local Panamanian foods.
Lunch can cost you under $5, dinners under $10, and a cold cerveza will cost $1. Majority of expats cook in their homes and eat outside at least once or twice a week. A couple can live on $1,500 per month in Cambutal.