While waiting for our boat, which leaves on the 23rd, we’ve been occupying our time wandering the city and of course making a trip to Panama’s most famous destination – the Panama Canal.
The visit to the canal was fairly anticlimactic. We were able to watch several large cargo ships pass through the Miraflores Locks, but the museum exhibits and special feature film presentation left a little to be desired.
We also visited Casco Viejo, one of Panama City’s more scenic neighborhoods.
The other two days, we’ve spent at El Pal Mar Beach, which is close to San Carlos. It is about 1.5 hours outside of the city, and requires taking a precarious, full-throttle collectivo minibus ride there. This death defying, roller coaster ride costs only $2.50.
Speaking of buses, I’ve become well acquainted with Chicken Buses, which are former US school buses turned into public transit buses, in my travels, but Panama has some of the craziest, most ornately painted ones I’ve seen yet. These hoopdies boast airbrushing, colored neon lights, incredibly loud diesel stack pipes and blaring reggaton music. They are quite the sight to behold.
Tomorrow we leave bright and early to catch our ground transport to our sailboat that will take us to Cartegena, Columbia. We will be island hopping for about 3 days and then hitting open ocean for the last two. Christmas for us will be celebrated in the middle of the ocean!
Happy Holidays from Goobernation!!!