Buses depart Panama City from the bus terminal in Albrook every 30 minutes. They are small minibuses, however, they are air-conditioned and spacious. The trip lasts approximately 2-2 1/2 hours depending on traffic, and the cost is $4.50 per person. Most of the trip is along the Pan-American Highway, with the last 28 km heading into the mountain region. The first bus departs Panama City at around 7:00 a.m. and the last bus departing El Valle to Panama City departs at around 4:00 p.m. However, there are local buses that offer service until 6:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m. for $1.00 that transport you from El Valle to the PanAmerican Highway, where you can get on any bus en route to Panama City.
How to get to El Valle by Car
Once you get out of Panama City, its very easy. The problem is getting out of the city! If you have problems here, you can ask a cab to escort you to the edge of town for a few dollars. There is only 1 main road in Panama, the PanAmerican Highway. As you leave the city, you have to cross over the canal, either via the old Bridge of the Americas, or the new Centenario Bridge. Both bridges put you on the PanAm Highway.
On the PanAm Highway, you will drive into the interior of Panama for about 1- 1 1/2 hours, going through small towns. You will come into an area called Coronado. Its a booming beach community, FULL of signs to buy condos, etc. There’s a big mall, a Rey grocery store, and a McDonalds! As you pass this place, know you are about 12-15 minutes from the right turn to El Valle. Don´t turn into Coronado, just keep going — past this area, staying on the PanAm Highway for another 12-15 minutes. You will see signs mentioning El Valle now. Watch for them.
Once you make the right turn up to El Valle off the PanAm Highway, slow down, relax and enjoy the drive up the mountains! Its about 30 minutes up to the village. No turns are possible. There is one road up to the village, from Las Uvas.
As you enter El Valle, the first store you will see is The Centro Commercial. We have signs here directing you to turn right here. Just follow the signs up to The Golden Frog Inn. Its a 3-4 minute drive through a beautiful residential area.
Important Note: Some maps show 2 roads from the PanAmerican Highway to El Valle. This is a mistake! This road from Anton, the small town on the PanAmerican Highway is a rough 4×4 road only!
You will first see a Centro Comercial General Store on your right. Here you will turn right, following the signs to the Golden Frog Inn. There is a pay phone at the Centro Comercial. If you should have any problems, call us, we will direct you in!