Cruises to Panama Canal
Construction on the Panama Canal, begun by France and finished by the USA, was completed in 1914. It was created to allow ships to pass from the Pacific to Atlantic Oceans, via the Caribbean Sea, without having to make the long sail rounding Cape Horn on the southern tip of South America. In all it cut over 7,000 miles off the trip! The canal not only revolutionized sea trade and travel, but made possible Panama Canal cruising encompassing the Americas and the Caribbean Islands.
Cruises through Panama Canal: Eastwards and Westwards
Your Panama Canal cruise of North America can be accomplished from the east or west coast and generally takes between fifteen and twenty days. You can start your Panama cruise on the east coast at Miami, Florida, a popular beach and party town with a laid back, artistic vibe. Enjoy the balmy ocean air as you watch the scenery of the Caribbean Islands drift by, arriving to Columbia, with an excursion at Cartagena to enjoy the views of the harbor from the old fortresses.
Next enjoy shopping at Colon before entering the famed Canal, which is actually a sanctuary for many forms of birds and wildlife thanks to its tropical climate. Sit back and enjoy a day of scenic Panama Canal cruising.
The rainforest landscape continues as you sail north along the Pacific Coast of Central America, past Costa Rica and Guatemala, rich in Mayan civilization history and famed for its coffee. Visit beaches and perhaps do a spot of watersports as you drop anchor in Mexican towns, before reaching the United States of America. Your Panama cruise typically disembarks at San Diego, San Francisco or Los Angeles, though you can choose to sail further to Vancouver, Canada. Carry on your journey by land, or turn around and take the cruise through Panama Canal from west to east!
Cruises to Panama: Panama Canal Round Trip
A Panama cruise round trip departing Florida takes you on a voyage through the Caribbean, stopping off at island highlights such as Aruba and the Grand Caymans. The atmosphere of Aruba is still strongly influenced by their Dutch colonists and is surrounded by sandy beaches and secluded coves. The waters around Grand Cayman Islands are ideal for snorkeling and scuba diving. Make some excursions at Central American cities and then return to disembark at your starting point.
Panama Canal Cruises: South America
Departing from Valparaiso on the Pacific Coast of Chile, sail northwards for fourteen nights sampling the flavor of Latin America, taking in Peru before your scenic Panama cruise along the Canal, spotting sloths, eagles and toucans in the rainforest along its shores, continuing onwards to Columbia. At Lima explore the museums of culture, art and gold; Arica, at the foot of the Andes Mountain Range, is surrounded by lush valleys and old silver and ore mines. Enjoy scenic cruising and island spotting through the Caribbean before disembarking in Florida, USA.