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Panama - The Causeway (Feb 18)

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View Panama Canal on Sue McNicholas's travel map.

Monday, February 18

Today we decided to walk to the causeway - 10 Ks. We set out down the hill and ambled along. The weather is great, and we found interesting little places along the way. We found a large former convention centre, that was entirely deserted. Many of the businesses and offices that were running successfully some years back have fallen into disuse since the U.S. presence has left Panama. The walk was long and interesting, but there is not much shade at midday, and the temperature was well up in the thirties.
no shade along these streets!

no shade along these streets!


Aidan hiked along with us, making observations of things we missed - spiders, frogs, monkeys and plenty more.

Aidan hiked along with us, making observations of things we missed - spiders, frogs, monkeys and plenty more.


Jude, Eldon and me, with the causeway stretching behind us.

Jude, Eldon and me, with the causeway stretching behind us.


We found a fine spot to sip coffee, while we looked out at the boardwalk or causeway which links up three islands, and we decided to walk out and visit them. Along the way we found a lovely restaurant, where we sat under our own palm-leaf thatched umbrella. Fresh snapper was the wonderful choice. It was so fresh, I suspect believe it may have snapped the hand of the cook as he slid it into a sizzling pan! We looked out over the view of pleasure boats with the backdrop of a modern city across the bay. We relaxed with a few cold local beer and then headed for the islands.
This is the height of the tourist season and also the last week that kids are on school holidays. In spite of that, there is a deserted feel to the boardwalk and the islands. Our stroll took on monstrous proportions as we clocked in 15 Ks.
A large cargo ship, having just come through the Milaflores Locks (Pacific side) and under the Bridge of the Americas. Many of Panamas islands can be seen here.

A large cargo ship, having just come through the Milaflores Locks (Pacific side) and under the Bridge of the Americas. Many of Panamas islands can be seen here.


We decided to try out the local bus. Soon one came and we hopped on board. 25 cents each, but a ticket was needed. A passenger reached forward and clicked her pass 4 times for us! "Muchas gracias!"
A Local bus, colourfully painted, and just 25 cents to get around town, as far as you want to go.

A Local bus, colourfully painted, and just 25 cents to get around town, as far as you want to go.


As the bus leaves us we can see our flag way up on the hill - Still a bit of a hike!

As the bus leaves us we can see our flag way up on the hill - Still a bit of a hike!


Once off the bus we hiked along backroads, and happily came across a small market stand where Kuna Indians were selling some of their beautiful crafts. We had a look. Jude bought a Panama hat, which looks good on everyone. I couldn't resist a beautiful appliqu├ęd cloth.
In the market. It is so difficult to make a choice!

In the market. It is so difficult to make a choice!

The embroiderer a amongst us will appreciate this piece of art. I will frame it and enjoy it when I arrive back in Newfoundland

The embroiderer a amongst us will appreciate this piece of art. I will frame it and enjoy it when I arrive back in Newfoundland

We continued on up the hill. We are actually in a park - Gutan National Park, so we often see monkeys and other animals swinging in the trees.
Eldon, Jude and Aidan making their way back home.

Eldon, Jude and Aidan making their way back home.


Eventually, we arrived at our little villa, and greeted Yvonne, who had arrived to join us. Though Yvonne was raring to go (?) we had a wonderful relaxing evening. Chef Eldon prepared lovely tender filet and roasted veggies. We finished the evening with several hands of poker.

Posted by Sue McNicholas 05:23 Archived in Panama

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