Upon arriving at Tocumen International Airport in Panama City in the early afternoon you will be met by your private guide. Set out on an afternoon tour of Panama City, a diverse metropolis that is home to World Heritage Sites, rainforests and a flourishing business district filled with skyscrapers.
First explore the ruins of Old Panama City. Dating from 1519, this was the first European settlement established along the shores of the Pacific Ocean and an integral point on Spanish trade routes though the American continent. The city was devastated by piracy and fire in 1671 and later rebuilt 8km from the ruins of the old city, which is now known as Panama Viejo.
Continue on to Casco Viejo, the old quarter, a UNESCO World Heritage Site with its French and Colonial architecture and cobblestone streets. Visit the Panama Canal Museum, located in the building that served as headquarters for both the French and U.S. companies involved in the various stages of the construction process.
Your tour ends with the modern city, the political center of Panama and a hub of international finance.
After the tour you will be transferred to your boutique hotel in Casco Viejo. Relax and unpack before tonight’s welcome dinner. You may wish to order a cocktail and take in the breathtaking view from the hotel’s roof terrace, from which you can see Panama City’s skyline, the Pacific Ocean, Ancon Hill and the entrance to the Panama Canal.
Your dinner this evening at a celebrated restaurant in the banking district of the city center is included. Here you will taste some of the best seafood in town.
Overnight Las Clementinas
Following breakfast this morning your private driver will pick you up at your hotel for a 40-minute transfer to the town of Gamboa, site of the Panama Canal's Dredging Division, where you will board a comfortable passenger ferry.
The ferry traverses Gatun Lake at 26 meters above sea level which is part of the Gaillard Cut, the narrowest section of the Panama Canal. This 13.7-kilometer long portion of the waterway was carved through rock and shale and is flanked by the backbones of the Continental Divide. The Gaillard Cut was increased from its original width of 92 meters to 152 meters in the early 1970s, and in order to accommodate today's demands, the Panama Canal Authority recently completed the monumental task of widening the Cut to 192 meters in straight sections and up to 222 meters along curves. This allows for unrestricted two-way traffic of Panamax vessels, the largest ships that fit in the Panama Canal locks.
Continuing southbound on the Canal you will pass the first lock set, Pedro Miguel locks, where the ship is lowered 9 meters. The locks are concrete structures that raise or lower ships to the correct water depth as they pass through a series of chambers. While enjoying your lunch on board, pass through Miraflores Locks, which are the tallest in the lock system, built to accommodate the extreme tidal variation of the Pacific Ocean. In two steps, the boat will be lowered from 17 meters above sea level to sea level in the almost 2 kilometer long lock set. Here, a transition from fresh water in the lake and lock chambers to salt water in the Pacific Ocean takes place. Before leaving the Panama Canal and entering the Pacific Ocean you will pass under the Bridge of the Americas, which rises over 100 meters above sea level and reunites the land divided during construction of the Canal, forming a link in the Pan-American Highway. You will disembark the ferry at Causeway Amador and transfer back to your hotel by private car to relax before dinner.
Dinner tonight will be at your hotel’s restaurant. Each dish—from risotto con coco to ropa vieja—has been researched and refined to perfection by the chef, who has created Panamanian food as it was meant to be, using fresh, local ingredients, many of which come right from the property’s garden!
Overnight Las Clementinas
This morning meet your driver for your private airport transfer 3 hours before your scheduled departure flight, or the connection to your next Willing Foot destination.
*Price is subject to change due to date and time of year of booking as well as to currency fluctuation. The price is only an estimate at this time and an accurate costing will be provided when itineraries are chosen and submitted. Prices are based on double/twin occupancy.
- Accommodation: 2 nights
- All land transfers by private car
- All airport/hotel transfers on scheduled arrival and departure dates
- Entrance fees for scheduled activities
- Local guides’ services and expenses: Half -day tour through evening meal
- Services of an in-bound land operator for airline re-confirmations and tour operations
- Day 2: Breakfast
- Day 2: Lunch
- Days 1 & 2: Dinner
- International airfare
- Passport, visa, immigration fees
- Personal items, such as alcoholic beverages and laundry
- Baggage/accident/travel insurance
- Meals not specified in the itinerary
Our recommendation is to start your Willing Foot experience in Panama on a Friday in order to go on the Partial Panama Canal Transit, which is available every Saturday from April through December. During the high season (January through March), the Partial Panama Canal Transit is available from Thursdays through Saturdays. In those months you are welcome to arrive between Wednesday and Friday morning/early afternoon.
- We recommend that our clients consult their General Practitioner or Travel Clinic for advice on necessary vaccinations or medicines depending on the region to which they are traveling.
- All guests are strongly advised to take out comprehensive travel insurance covering them for all personal effects, personal accident, medical and emergency travel expenses, cancellation, and curtailment.
- Self-drive passengers renting a car are required to carry a valid international driver's license.