Panama Canal Cruises 2018 - 2019
A Panama Canal cruise is a bucket list adventure for many cruise fans. One of the seven wonders of the modern world, the famous crossing between the Atlantic and Pacific oceans revolutionized ocean travel with its opening in 1914. The original locks are still in place, still working flawlessly after more than 100 years in an incredible feat of engineering.
Choose your cruise based on whether you want to make a full or a partial Panama Canal crossing. A full crossing is a must-see for any bucket list traveler looking for the full Panama Canal experience, while a partial has the advantage of shorter itineraries and more opportunities to explore the surrounding rainforests and beaches of Central America.
Nearby ports of call offer some of the most stunning nature of anywhere in the world. Explore lush tropical rainforests, hike to stunning lakes and waterfalls, and zipline over the tree tops on an unforgettable shore excursion to Nicaragua, Guatemala and more during your Panama Canal cruise.
Located on the Pacific side of the Panama Canal, Colon is home to a gleaming, modern, tourist-friendly port. Passengers will find plenty of opportunities to shop and eat near the cruise terminals, or to take a shore excursion to see some more scenic parts of Panama.
Before the completion of the Panama Canal, the overland rail route played an important role in transporting goods between the Pacific and Atlantic oceans. Passengers today can still take a historic train ride on the Isthmian Railway from Colon to Panama City.Highlights of Colon
- Take a scenic train ride from Colon to Panama City
- Take an excursion into the rainforest to see sloths, harpy eagles, and other exotic wildlife
- Visit the nearby town of Portobelo and explore the Spanish forts colonial houses
What better way to see the Panama Canal than by cruising through it? Sail in the wake of history as your ship navigates the locks which have been in service more than 100 years and are still functioning flawlessly today. Plagued by difficulties during construction, the final lock system was so effective, it has remained virtually unchanged throughout the years.
The entire Panama Canal crossing takes 8 to 10 hours.Highlights of the Panama Canal
- Get up early to secure your spot on the bow of the ship, where you'll have the best view of the locks as you pass through
- Capture a scenic photo of the Bridge of the Americas, the world's first non-swinging bridge to span the canal
- Learn about the exciting history of the canal, from ill-fated construction attempts in the 19th century to its most recent expansion in 2016
An island located off the west coast of Panama, Fuerte Amador is the gateway to Panama City. Sitting close to the Pacific entrance of the Panama Canal, it offers the perfect place to watch ships enter the locks as they begin to traverse the canal. In addition to holding numerous canal-related museums and attractions, Fuerte Amador offers easy access to Panama City, the metropolis-like capital city and heart of the nation.Highlights of Panama City
- Check out the Miraflores Locks Visitor Center to learn more about the canal, its history and its engineering
- Explore Casco Viejo, Panama City's historic quarter and a UNESCO protected site
- Learn about the importance of gold in Panama's history and see golden treasures up close at the Old Panama Museum
Cristobal is one of two ports in Colon on the Atlantic side of the Panama Canal. Many ships stop in Cristobal before they enter the locks, or stop in Cristobal and then turn around on partial crossings. If your cruise belongs to the latter, consider booking an excursion to complete the crossing in a smaller boat to get the complete experience.
Directly next to the pier, cruise passengers will find a lively flea market with plenty of opportunities for shopping, souvenir hunting, and haggling over prices. Adventure-seekers and nature-lovers may wish to visit the beautiful Gatún Lake.Highlights of Cristobal
- Snag some deals while shopping at the local market
- Take a tour of the rainforest's canopy with the Gamboa Aerial Tram
- Visit a nearby indigenous village and learn about the local art of basket weaving
Balboa is one of two cruise ports on the Atlantic side of the Panama Canal, located in close proximity to Panama City. Head down to the Miraflores Locks to watch the ships as they enter and exit the locks, or take a taxi into the city for excellent shopping, sightseeing and dining opportunities. Another option is a shore excursion into the rainforest – the surrounding area is a nature and wildlife preserve.Highlights of Panama City
- Take advantage of the duty-free shopping at Fuerte Amador Mall, or snag souvenirs at a local artisanal market
- Explore the Spanish and French colonial architecture in the Panama Viejo, the old part of the city
- Visit one of the city's many museums to learn about the history of the canal and the native wildlife to Panama
Gatún Lake makes up a major component of the Panama Canal. Located near the Atlantic side of the canal, a series of lock separate it from the Caribbean Sea. The man-made lake was created during the construction of the canal by damming the Chagres River, and it plays an important role in restoring the water lost during boat transit from the canal.Highlights of Gatún Lake
- Drift through the narrow channels and scenic islands of Gatún Lake on a Panama Canal crossing
- Take a boat tour and look for exotic wildlife, such as monkeys, sloths, and toucans
- Rent a kayak and paddle around the lake on your own or with an expert guide
Panama Canal CruisesLying between two larger continents and surrounded by the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans, Central America is a wondrous belt of islands and lands bursting with rainforests, tropical beaches, lava-spewing volcanoes. Central America boasts year-round sunshine and is becoming one of the most popular regions for cruisers. This precious region offers paradisiacal, white sand beaches and turquoise waters, and promises to be an experience filled with sunshine, culture, and history. Discover vibrant cultural meccas and cities with a rich colonial past!
Belize City, BelizeBelize is arguably the most overlooked country in Central America by tourists. Belize ramshackle colonial streets are alive with vivid characters who represent every facet of its ethnic makeup, especially the Creoles. Belize has the second largest barrier reef in the world, so for anyone who loves swimming among tropical fishes and other exotic marine wildlife, snorkeling in Belize is a must! From scuba diving its warm and turquoise-colored Caribbean waters and a gigantic blue hole to hiking an ancient Maya village, Belize city has something for everyone.
Cruises to Cozumel, MexicoCozumel has become one of the top travel destinations in the world because of its spectacular and intriguing attractions like diving along the shallow reefs, hiking through the Punta Sur Ecological Park or exploring what the Mayans left behind at the San Gervasio ruins. Cruise passengers use the island as a hub for Mexico’s spectacular attractions, including marine-life encounters like the baby sea turtle hatching, botanical gardens, and ruins. If you are looking to escape to a stress-free and sunny place that offers a great mix of adventure and fun-filled activities, then you might want to consider Cozumel, Mexico. Book Now Book online or call our experts for all the best deals on Central America Cruises. For other great international destinations why not have a look in Europe or the Caribbean. All cruises can be found on our homepage. If you're after a cheap or last minute cruise, then have a search through each page for the best deals.
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