Things to do in Tierras Altas, Chiriqui (Chiriqui Highlands)
Welcome to Tierras Altas in Chiriquí, a beautiful place where the green of its mountains cover everything around you, the nice weather is one of the main tourist attraction. If you are looking for something to do in Cerro Punta, Volcán and you don't know other touristic sites, or don't know where and what to do?, in this post we'll show you everything. Tierras Altas is the perfect place to spend the weekend, it has a wide gastronomic offer in Volcán, Wonderful places to to stay in Bambito, agrotourism and handicrafts in Cerro Punta, among national parks, places to visit, hiking and contemplate our majestic Volcán Barú. And don't forget to visit Finca Dracula, one biggest botanical garden in Panamá and orchids collection of the world.
Location and District
The name "Distrito de Tierras Altas" is relatively new since it was officially recognized in 2017.
This causes confusion to lots panamenians because "Tierras Altas" is colloquially used to describe the mountanious region of Chiriquí that includes a Boquete, Cerro Punta and Volcán wich is very different to the district.
When it was constituted; it did not included Boquete, one of the most known towns of the province that is located in the mountains too.
What does the Tierras Altas District cover?
The region covers from Cuesta de Piedra to Cerro Punta.
There are people that use the names of some towns located in this district to call the entire zone.
Mainly they call it:
The Zones or Towns
The towns that cover the district of Tierras Altas and its names are also a confusion source.
When you speak with a local he or she will use the most specific name of the town or area where something is located, wich disorients a lot.
When you are looking for a place to go and stay, all of these zones are close one to another and most of the streets are in good condition.
Cuesta de Piedra
It's the lowest elevation region in the district (~800 mts), known because of viewpoint (Chicheme), dairies and Macho de Monte (Cangilones).
- Las tumbas
It's known for the lakes, the flowers parade, restaurants and hotels.
- Dos Rios
It's famous thanks to the Bambito Hotel, tout farming, the sight to the Chiriquí Viejo River and the vegetable distributors.
- Paso Ancho
- Nueva Suiza
Cerro Punta is the highest ekevation zone, with more than 2000 meters above the sea level. It is famous for the panamenians beacause it's the place where most of the vegetables that are consumed in the country come from.
Cerro Punta has beautiful vegetables landscapes, cold weather, strawberry farming, race horses, houses with gardens full of flowers and Finca Dracula (Orchid collection).
The main street in Cerro Punta goes around the area in the form of a circle, going through three of its main zones.
- Cerro Punta Pueblo
- Las Nubes
- Entre Ríos
- Las Cumbres
- Alto Pineda
- La Garita
The Tierras Altas region of Chiriqui has a great selection of Hiking trails that are not too crowded. It is also home to some of the most biodiverse regions in the word with its cloud forests, home to rare plant and animal species. Therefore, it is one of the best things to do in Tierras Altas. In the following list we'll show you all the trails and we are constantly adding new guides of these trails with videos.
We recommend to begin the trails early in the morning because it tends to rain in the afternoons. There are many different trails to choose from, for all types of visitors. Some may require a guide.
With the amount of water that there is in this region of Tierras Altas, it feeds lots of amazing rivers, brooks and lakes. That's why we recommend you to explore them and if you are brave enough don't think about it twice and try to dive in them. One of the things to do in Tierras Altas is to explore these funny places.
These are the most famous places for the visitors and locals.
The rivers and waterfalls, the more altitude above the sea level they have, the colder they get. They can decrease 14 Celsius (57,2 Fahrenheit), but don't let it scare you, besides you should be careful with the flash flood. Do not go to rivers in rainy season, even if it looks like there's no rain, in the inner mountain could be heavily raining...
The Tierras Altas District has the most fertile soils of the country and the kindest weather for the plants, that's why it's known among the panamanians for being the source of lots of the farm products we consume. For that reason most of its tourist attractions, specially in the internal tourism, is focused in the agriculture and cattle raising.
This conditions next to the love of the residents for the plants is reflected in a tradition for keeping beautiful gardensi in their houses and in greenhouses of amazing plants like the orchids of Finca Dracula.
This list will show you the main attractions of the zone.
Many of the tourist attractions of Tierras Altas have schedules and variable opening days. We'd recommend to call to make sure that they are open the day you want to visit it.
Volcan Canopy Park
Ziplining – Volcán More info here
Haras Cerro Punta
Racing horses – Guadalupe, Cerro Punta More info here
Botanical Garden and Orchid Collection, Guadalupe, Cerro Punta More info here
Archeological Site with lots of pre-Columbian History – Volcán More info here
Agricultural tour – Cerro Punta Pueblo, Cerro Punta
Coffee tour and coffeeshop – Volcán More info here
Pony, buffalo and donkeys hatchery – Volcán
Geisha Coffee Tour More info here
Trout Farm and Fishing – Bambito
Hotel Casa Grande
Tubing and Ziplining – Bambito
Museo de Volcán
Memorabilia e historia de la zona – Volcán
Sloth bear rescue
Cerro Punta SA
Vegetables, strawberries and flowers growing – Cerro Punta More info here
Walk through the town and explore its houses full of flowers and gardens – Cerro Punta
Vegetables, strawberries and flowers growing – Volcán More info here
Having the freshest ingredients and close, allow to the restaurants and cafeterias of Tierras Altas to offer delicious food with affordable prices and it's something we recommend you to take advantage of.
Tierras Altas is the favorite place to eat strawberries and cream with a coffee of the area or a hot chocolate. You can also find the creamy chicheme of Chiriquí, strawberry or blackberry ice cream and huevitos de leche (handmade traditional candy) to take home and share with your friends and family.
This post is also available in: Spanish