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Saturday 6th March 2010

Panamania

I did a solo mission to Panama for a couple of nights as itís the only Country in Central America I hadnít been to and Iíve always been keen to see the Panama Canal.

I stayed at an awesome party hostel that had been recommended to me by numerous people called Lunas Castle and it didnít disappoint. Met a few cool people and at night the bar downstairs was going off so we didnīt need to venture any further.

I caught a taxi to MiraFlores on the Panama Canal which is the closest lock to Panama City. Watched a brief movie on the construction and history of the canal and then headed upstairs to the viewing platform. I saw two ships pass through the canal. The first was an oil tanker and the second one was a massive cruise ship. Apparently cruise ships donít pass through that often so I was lucky to see it. The money involved is astronomical. The cruise ship paid $280K US to pass through the canal. The lowest fee ever paid was $0.36 by an American bloke (Richard Halliburton) who swam the 77km length of the canal.  The yanks only handed back the Canal to Panama in 1999 which is why the city feels so Americanised.

Panama City is an awesome city! I stayed in the old town which was very safe as it was close to the Presidential Palace but some of the adjacent suburbs were very dodgy indeed. Panama uses the US dollar and appears expensive at times although I was still able to buy a meal (arroz y pollo - chicken and rice) for $0.80 at a local cafe.

More photos here:
http://www.danscapers.com/gallery/Panama




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Dan brand Orange Juice in Slovenia ... what a country!

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