The Panama Canal
Miraflores Locks at The Panama Canal in Panama City, Panama.
You can’t go to Panama without visiting the Panama Canal. I’m pretty sure they check that when you exit at immigration. Pretty sure. (Though, I wouldn’t know, because I didn’t really go through immigration when I left.)
The Panama Canal was forged through the country in order to connect the Atlantic Ocean to the Pacific Ocean. The French started it, those damned Americans finished it, and now it’s all under Panamaiac control.
No one I met seemed too impressed with their visit to the canal. Though, I tend to meet a lot of backpackers who just seem to care about drinking. So I tend to take their word with caution. I enjoyed it. Maybe not sit around all day watching boats go by enjoyed it. But enjoyed it for one boat. I mean, it was a pretty slow process.
Basically you go to the Miraflores Locks, because that’s where the visitor center is, walk through the museum, watch a corny little 3-D movie, and watch the ships go through the locks.
Basically the ships sail into this little chamber which is then locked off. Then the water goes…somewhere…and they are lowered down so that the ship is level with the next part of the water. Then they leave the chamber, it’s blocked off again, the water level returns to the height of the first section of water, and it starts all over again.
(Lesson: don’t come to my blog is you want actual information.)
I saw locks before the last time I was in Seattle, but this was a much bigger scale…