Though we had originally thought we would spend both days with our rental car in Volcan, we decided to really get our money's worth and drive to the Pacific Coast and then to the Caribbean. Panama's horizontal, sideways "S" shape lends itself to easy access to both coasts. The Pacific side (below) was smolderingly hot partly due to the black volcanic sand. Having started our day in the mountains, we weren't appropriately dressed and hurried back to our car's a/c after snapping a quick picture.
We took the only road in the area that cuts through the country and were bowled over by Panama's beauty, especially in the high altitudes. We made our way up, up and up and then down witnessing the scenery change from lush, green mountains to lush green jungle. It only took us about an hour and a half to slice through Panama and reach the Caribbean coast (right). The road spit us out in anti-climactic Grand Chiriqui, a port town from whence we'll eventually take a ferry over to the famed beach area of Bocas Del Torro. With our rental due back the next day however, we had to save the Bocas del Torro trip for a later time. With Captain Randy at the wheel, we headed back to Boquete. We decided to milk our car time the next morning and motor to areas of Boquete inaccessible to us on foot.