Nestled in the foothills of the Central Cordiella, Soloy is home some Ngäbe 6,000 inhabitants, most of them subsistence farmers. The powerful Fonseca River flows through the town and is central to daily Ngäbe life. Valleys and hills covered in secondary dry forest and agricultural land surround the town, but pristine cloud forest exists higher up in the remote mountains of the Comarca Ngäbe-Bugle.
The town is rustic and currently without electricity but it does have various amenities including mobile phone reception, running water (not potable), and a selection of simple lodgings, restaurants and basic stores. Due to the efforts of grassroots NGOs, local community tourism groups, and volunteers, the community has some tourist infrastructure and is a practical and friendly introduction to the Comarca and Ngäbe culture.
Buses David to Soloy, 0800 to 1200 and 1400 to 1700, buses depart when full (approximately hourly), $3., 1 ¾ hours. Alternatively, catch an eastbound bus on the Inter-American Highway and exit at the Soloy turn-off. From there, catch a truck. (see From the Inter- American Highway below).
Soloy to David, 0530-1200 and 1400-1700, buses depart when full (approximately hourly), $2.50, 1 ¾ hours. Alternatively, catch a truck to the Inter-American Highway and pick up a westbound service to David.
From the Inter-American
Small trucks regularly carry people between the Inter-American Highway and Soloy, 1 hr, $1.50. Trucks also travel to the villages of Boca de Balsa and Cerro Banco, ¾ hr, $1.
Several families in Soloy currently offer homestays and can be organised through Medo. Home stays are an excellent to learn about the community, experience family life and practicing your Spanish (or even your Ngäbere!). People in Soloy live in very simple wooden shelters without electricity or plumbing. While rustic, many visitors and volunteers list living with a traditional Ngöbe family as a highlight of their experience.
$15 per person per night.
A clean, simple, rustic room with two single beds. Shared latrine. There is no shower so you will have to go local and wash in the river!
$5 per person per night excluding food.