In Panama, you can go hiking to the Volcán Barú. There are hiking tours to the Volcán Barú that go on every day. There’s also a trail that connects Boquete to Volcán, called the Quetzales (named after the bird). People from Panama City come all the way to Chiriquí just to walk that trail.
Most of the hiking activities in Panama focus on the Chiriquí area. There is a smaller hiking trail in the middle of Panama called “India Dormida” which translates to “the sleeping aborigine.” It got its name because the mountain has the shape of a lady who is lying down. It’s about a 2-hour drive from Panama City, and is located close to the mountain town of El Valle, not very far from Coronado.
As for camping in Panama, you can also do that in Volcán Barú, in Veraguas Province, or at the beach where you basically just go and put up a tent. In Veraguas Province there is this beautiful reservoir that has a lake and a very large green area where people go camping. These are the spots for camping in Panama.
People don’t go camping in Darien. In fact, people don’t go to Darien because that’s where the military has set up a base to protect us from Colombian cartels, so if you’re there and you don’t speak the language, you may be mistakenly thought to be a criminal. Never ever go to Darien. Darien is the region in Panama up to the border with Colombia.
(Pictured: view from Lucero Country Club, near Boquete, Panama.)