8 DAY - THE ESSENCE OF PANAMA

Departure: Thursdays

8 Days

An 8-day trip to experience the fresh essence of Panama: historical sites, an impressive train ride, the captivating Panama Canal, the inspiring nature and coffee plantations of Boquete, plus the turquoise waters and white sand beaches of Bocas del Toro; a journey full of recreational opportunities!

Hotels quoted are tourist category (similar to 3* category).  The hotels we use are clean, safe, with private facilities and are well located.

Day 1

Panama City - Thursday

Upon arrival to Panama a representative of our company will pick you up at the airport and transfer you to your city hotel for your first night in Panama.

Panama City is the capital and largest city in the country. It is home to a diverse blend of cultures and an enormous historical sector in the Old City. The lively and vibrant banking district on the other hand is very modern and often compared to Miami. Panama City is a thrilling location you will surely enjoy dur-ing your visit to this gorgeous country.

Overnight at your Lodge, Standard Room.

Day 2

Partial Canal Transit

After a transfer from your hotel to Flamenco Marina, the partial transit starts with a motor coach ride for 45 minutes to the town of Gamboa where the Panama Canal Dredging Division is located. Once in Gamboa, you will aboard the cruise ship to start the water portion of the tour. You will enter the canal at the north end of the Gaillard Cut, where the Chagres River flows into the Canal. The Gaillard Cut (also known as Culebra Cut because its curves resemble a snake) is one of the main points of interest for visi-tors because it was carved through the Continental Divide and this section of the Canal is full of history and geological value. Your boat will travel the Cut's 13.7 kilometers on the way to Pedro Miguel Locks. As you transit the Cut you will be able to appreciate the continuous maintenance that this area requires, because it is very susceptible to landslides. In this area you will also be able to observe the work in pro-cess for the Panama Canal expansion project.

Before reaching the Pedro Miguel Locks at the southern end of the Cut, you will be able to view the new Centennial Bridge which crosses over the Canal. Next, your ship will enter Pedro Miguel Locks, which is one of the two sets of locks on the Pacific side, and here the vessel is lowered 9 meters in one step. You will then enter Miraflores Lake, which is a small artificial body of fresh water that separates Pedro Mi-guel from Miraflores Locks, the latter being the final set of locks before reaching the Pacific Ocean. At Miraflores Locks the vessel is lowered 16 meters in two distinct steps.

Once in the Pacific Ocean the vessel will sail to the beautiful Flamenco Marina where you disembark. On the way to Flamenco, you will pass under the Bridge of the Americas, and later, you will be able to admire the Bay of Panama and Panama City's splendorous skyline. Upon arrival at Flamenco you will be transferred back to your city hotel.

Important Note: Every first and third Saturday of the month you can upgrade to a Complete Canal Transit (Pacific to Atlantic) for an additional $55 per person.

Overnight at your Lodge, Standard Room.

B

Day 3

Panama City - David - Boquete

In the morning you will be transferred to the domestic airport in Panama City to fly to David. Upon arri-val to David our representative will pick you up and bring you to Boquete. Check in a beautiful lodge in midst of a Coffee Plantation. The rest of the day is free at leisure.

Overnight at the Finca, Standard Room.

B

Day 4

Coffee Hacienda

Today you will visit the local coffee plantation of your Finca where you can learn about the process of coffee cultivation. You will also have the chance to sample some different bean varieties. The afternoon is free for optional hiking in the cloud forest.

Overnight at the Finca, Standard Room.

B

Day 5

Boquete - Bocas del TOro

You will be taken from Boquete to Isla Colon on the paradisiacal Bocas del Toro archipelago. This transfer starts with a lovely 4 hours drive through the highlands and down to the Caribbean coast where you board a boat to Bocas del Toro.

Overnight at Hotel in Bocas del Toro, standard room.

B

Day 6

Bocas del Toro

Bocas del Toro, the capital, is located on Isla Colón and has lately become a popular tourist destination. The other parts of the province are still relatively untouched by tourism. Bocas offers many excellent spots for snorkeling, diving and fishing.

Due to the fact that the province is home to many species of endangered birds, fresh water turtles and the poison dart frog, it offers many chances for bird watching and observing animals. A highlight for nature lovers are of course the deserted beaches. A total of ninety-five percent of La Amistad National Park lies within the province Bocas del Toro, as does Bastimentos National Park. Bocas del Toro - the destination for both, adventure and recreation.

Overnight at your hotel in Bocas del Toro, standard room.

B

Day 7

Bocas del Toro - Panama City

Local flight from Bocas del Toro back to Panama City. Upon arrival you will be transferred to your city hotel for your last night in Panama City. Enjoy an evening out in the vibrant and lively capital often compared to Miami.

Overnight at your hotel, Standard Room.

B

Day 8

Panama City

After breakfast you will be transferred to the Tocumen Airport for your international flight back home.

B

Included:

Partial Panama Canal Transit
Coffee Tour
Ground transfers on A/C motor coaches
Local flights in economy class
All taxes and service charges

Not Included:

Airport Departure Taxes US$ 20.00 per person
Optional tours
Voluntary tips
Beverages
Additional meals
All extras in the hotels

Notes:

Rates available upon request. Rates are subject to change without notice.
Minimum two people.
Departures on Thursday.
Rates not applicable during special events, i.e. Christmas/New Year/Easter.

MEALS:

B.  Breakfast included
L.  Lunch included
D.  Dinner included

Why Choose BFirst Travel?

BFirst Travel, a wholly owned Australian tour company, ATAS/AFTA accredited and helloworld affiliate. For the past 15 years we have specialised exclusively in Latin America. We know a few parts of the world, and we know them well. Our been there, done that expertise elevates your experience beyond the ordinary, to the level of adventure with comfort! "Travel is all about the experience, which starts with your travel preparations”.

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