2019-06-13 Central Hotel Panama, Panama City, Panama

We are collected this morning by a driver with a guide to take us on a tour to see the locks of Panama Canal
We head north west from the city centre to make our way to the Miraflores Locks
We pass the Goethals Monument which is dedicated to George Washington Goethals who was the chief engineer in the construction of the Panama Canal
We arrive at the Miraflores Locks where a visitor centre and a museum have been developed in recent years
Ric has always been fascinated in the engineering of the Panama Canal and certainly did not want to miss visiting the site from our trip!!
There are wonderful views over the locks from the elevated balcony of visitor centre
Our guide was very helpful answering the many questions that Ric asked him!!
New locks have recently been built to take larger ships which were opened in mid 2016. From the visitor centre at Miraflores one can see the large ships slowly making their way through the new channel
A visit to the museum at the visitor centre was very interesting
The Panama Canal which is 50 miles long was built by the United States and was opened in 1914 after taking 10 years to build. In 1999 the world famous canal which connects two oceans was transferred to Panama
After our visit to see the Panama Canal locks at Miraflores, we are taken out to the Amador Causeway which was built with the rocks that came from the excavation of the canal. The causeway is approximately 3 km long which reaches several small islets which have become one larger area that has hotels, restaurants, bars, a nature center and marinas
We pass the brightly coloured and irregular shaped building which houses the Biomuseum which is also situated on the Amador Causeway .This museum focuses on the natural history of Panama
The striking building of the Biomuseum was designed by renowned architect Frank Gehry
Looking towards the modern tall buildings of Panama City from the causeway
Via the causeway we return to the old part of Panama City
In the centre of Plaza Herrera is a statue of a Tomas Herrera a well known military man, politician and president from the early 1800’s
Late morning we are dropped back at our hotel after a very interesting morning spent visiting the Miraflores Locks and the Amador Causeway
We check out the swimming pool on the rooftop of our hotel
Spectacular views from the Central Hotel
At lunchtime we leave the hotel and head straight across the lovely square, which has a rotunda, park benches etc to visit the Panama Cathedral
Looking back to our hotel
The beautiful Catedral Basilica Santa Maria La Antigua de Panama which was consecrated in 1796, although construction work began in 1688, 108 years earlier
There is some amazing architecture of the old part of Panama
The Convent of Santo Domingo which houses the Museum of Religious Art
We follow the walkway out towards Plaza de Francia
It is a bird’s paradise around this point
There are some amazing buildings in the business district of Panama
Vista Panama
We decide to stop for a light lunch and a drink at Navaja which is only a couple of streets from our hotel
The Panama hat shop, El Palacio Sombrero in the small street by our hotel has an amazing collection of Panama hats in all sizes and colours
In the evening we return to Navajar to try their evening menu
Firstly we decide to have a cocktail in the bar upstairs
We decide to share several of the dishes on the menu which was a wonderful way of experiencing so many delicious flavours
The fantastic friendly team at Navaja

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