Panama: Journey Between the Seas

Panama City, Panama

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Come aboard a small motor yacht for a one-of-a-kind journey between two mighty oceans through the Panama Canal. Along the way, meet the indigenous Embera people, whose traditional lifestyles have remained unchanged for 600 years; kayak and snorkel the pristine beaches of the Pearl Islands; and spot abundant wildlife at Gatun Lake, the world's premier location for viewing monkeys in the wild. On the canal's Atlantic side, you'll explore the magnificent Chagres River and tour historic Portobelo before returning to Panama City on a scenic train ride.


Duration: 7 Days
Starts in: Panama City, Panama
Ends in: Panama City, Panama
Group Size: 1-8

Operated by:

MT Sobek

MT Sobek, the originators, innovators and leaders in adventure travel for more than five decades, crafts journeys to the world's most memorable places.


Set Sail on the M/V Discovery

Board the M/V Discovery and set sail in the tropical waters of the Pacific Ocean towards Contadora, where the Discovery will stay the first night before navigating to the Darien Jungle. Take this opportunity to meet your expedition leaders, the crew, and your fellow travelers while savoring tempting local cuisine.

Explore the Darién Jungle

Enter the Darién jungle and travel to a place that few have had the privilege of exploring. More than an excursion, this is a journey into the lives of the Embera Indians, a proud people who have been able to preserve their traditions and lifestyle as they were before Spanish colonization. These natives are also master crafters of cocobolo wood carvings and basketry. After motoring up river, see their village emerging from the jungle. Keep your eyes open to spot the abundant wildlife along the river's edge.

Snorkel in the Pearl Islands

Snorkel and swim in the waters of the Pearl Islands. The archipelago owes its name to the abundance of pearl oysters that supported a substantial fishery in the early 1900s. On the outer portion of the archipelago, the islands of San Telmo and Mogo Mogo are home to some pristine beaches and fertile fishing grounds. View the remains of the submarine Explorer built in 1865 during the Civil War, which sunk off the coast of San Telmo in the late 1800s.

Navigate the Locks of the Panama Canal

Wake up at the entrance of the Panama Canal and join the morning's ship convoy for your northbound canal passage through Miraflores and Pedro Miguel Locks. Experience the history and operation of this engineering marvel up close when your boat is raised 85 feet above sea level to Gatun Lake. Sail through the Gaillard Cut, the narrowest section of the Panama Canal, and spend the night on Gatun Lake along the Panama Canal.

Kayak on Gatun Lake

Witness the splendor and excitement of the jungle firsthand as you board a kayak and paddle past lush rainforests to secluded areas of Gatun Lake. Take in the sights and sounds of the tropical jungle as you observe exotic birds, monkeys, sloths, iguanas, and crocodiles in their native surroundings. Cameras are a must, as this is considered the world's premier location for viewing monkeys and other animals. Climb back aboard the Discovery and exit the Panama Canal, sailing toward the mouth of the Chagres River.

Explore the Chagres River

Discover the magnificent Chagres River, which was used by the conquistadors to move their gold from Peru to Spain. The river was the centerpiece of the colonial inter-oceanic route and is now the lifeline of the Panama Canal, full of wildlife and tropical jungle. At the mouth of the Chagres, explore Fort San Lorenzo, a fort built by the Spaniards in the 16th century to defend their well-known gold trail. Later that evening, cruise to Colon and spend the night before disembarking the next day.

Tour Portobelo & Depart

Wake up to a farewell breakfast before disembarking. Travel by coach to Portobelo and explore this town that was founded by Christopher Columbus on his fourth voyage to the new continent. See the fortifications built by the Spaniards to protect their treasures, and visit the Church of San Felipe, the sanctuary of the Black Christ. Later in the afternoon, board the Panama Canal Railway train back to Panama City, passing through lush rainforest, cruising alongside the Canal's locks, and gliding over slender causeways in Gatun Lake.


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