November

November is an important month for Panama.  It is the month the whole country celebrates its independence from Spain and Colombia.  May this little isthmus always be free from foreign occupancy. May its inhabitants always live free from oppression and dictatorships.  May this beautiful flag always fly freely over this little  country I call home.

Panama Canal Railway

http://www.panarail.com/en/history/ The Panama Canal Railway is a railway line that runs parallel to the Panama Canal. The route stretches 47.6 miles  across the Isthmus of Panama from Colón on the Atlantic side to Balboa  on the Pacific side. It is operated by Panama Canal Railway Company.  The infrastructure of this railroad  was of vital importance for the construction of the Panama Canal. It has been in operation since 1855.

The People of the Canal

It has been calculated that over 30,000 people died during the construction of the Panama Canal.  The work force was plagued by disease, dangerous landslides, unsanitary living conditions, and unfair treatment due to discrimination. Today conditions are totally different and almost 10,000 people are employed in the operation of the Canal. Here are some of […]

Gray Ghost

This iconic gray lighthouse is familiar to everyone in the area of Gamboa.  It was built in 1914 and  is roughly 14 meters high (45 ft.) Although it is now inactive, it still greets southbound ships at the entrance of Gaillard Cut (Corte Culebra), a silent gray ghost that whispers of its once glorious past. […]

Cruisin’ the Canal

http://www.panamagreatadventures.com/ To celebrate the 100th anniversary of the Panama Canal, I decided to take a partial transit tour of this amazing engineering feat.  I have lived here for 34 years and had never actually transited the Canal.  I boarded the boat at Gamboa at 11 a.m. and arrived at the Causeway around 8 p.m. It […]

Danger: Explosives!!!

  The Panama Canal  is expanding its capacity to allow for more than double the traffic it currently serves. To be completed in 2015, the project that includes a third set of locks which are larger and wider than the existing ones, will cost $5.6 billion. This extreme makeover requires the use of explosives.  In the […]

100 Years Old and Still Going Strong

The Panama Canal was inaugurated in 1914.  This important waterway has serviced the world for 100 years.  When you take into account that it was built 100 years ago, you realize what an amazing engineering feat it was for its day.

After the Rain

It’s the rainy season again.  This is the time of the year we call “winter”.  Some people find the rain annoying.  I personally enjoy it.  Here you can appreciate the beauty of Plaza Herrera after a hard afternoon rain.

A True Gem: The American Trade Hotel

https://www.acehotel.com/panama My sister recently came to Panama for a short vacation.  She loves Casco Viejo, so I decided to try to book her a room in The American Trade Hotel. I had admired this beautifully renovated hotel from the outside, gazing through the huge windows to get a glimpse of its classy, elegant interior, but […]

Free Wi-Fi

Free Wi-Fi is available in the different parks and plazas of the Casco Viejo.   A tourist takes advantage of the free connection as he comfortably relaxes in Plaza Bolivar next to a monument erected in the honor of Simón Bolívar, the Venezuelan general known as the “Liberator of Latin America”.

Cooling Off

When the temperature rises there is no better way to beat the heat than to strip down and plunge into some nice, cool water.  It was fun to watch these two lads enjoy their little romp in the bay.  

The Brown Pelican

Brown pelicans are a common sight as you walk along the Bay of Panama.  These pictures were taken around Plaza de Francia in Casco Viejo.  

Cat Nap

A little cat nap under a shady tree is a great way to beat the heat and restore your energy.  This little cat has found a superb location to take his little afternoon siesta, right dab in the middle of Plaza Catedral in Casco Viejo.  

Fonda Pritty-Pritty

Here in Panama, when we want to say something is nice or “cool”, we use the word “pritty”. It’s the Panamanian version of pretty.  If you are in Casco Viejo and really want to try some authentic Panamanian food, then I suggest you visit the Fonda Pritty Pritty.  It is right across from the Policia […]

Dodó Bon Pan Café

https://www.facebook.com/Dodobonpan Today I visited a quaint little cafe in Plaza de Francia called Dodó Bon Pan Café.  The ambiance was marvelous, the service was impeccable, and the food was excellent.  It is not often that you find all these qualities in a restaurant and all at a very reasonable price. 

Kuna Women

The Kuna Indians inhabit the Comarca de San Blas or, Kuna Yala. This is an autonomous region that comprises the Archipelago de San Blas. The  Kuna society is  matrilineal and a newly married husband is required to move into his wife’s compound.The women play an important part in providing for the family, embroidering intricately designed and […]

Iglesia San Felipe de Neri

Iglesia San Felipe Neri was completed in 1688 and is one of the oldest churches in Panama City. Over time it has been a school, a seminary, and a home for the elderly. It is located in Casco Viejo on  Avenida B and Calle 5. It is simply breathtaking.

The Many Faces of Casco Viejo

Casco Viejo is a beautiful place to visit.  There is something magical and electrifying about this part of the city. I go there quite often but somehow it is always new to me.  I always find something new to photograph.  Its buildings are magnificent and its inhabitants are colorful and intriguing. 

Art Exposition

There is a beautiful exposition of Colonial religious statues and paintings in the church of Santo Domingo  where Arco Chato is located in Casco Viejo.  You are not allowed to take photographs of the exposition but I included a couple I took from the outside. Simply beautiful!

Gone but not Forgotten

The famous Panamanian buses known as Diablo Rojos (Red Devils) have been mostly replaced by the more modern Metro Bus. Although these buses are no longer a common sight on the city’s streets, they remain a part of Panama’a culture.  Here is a small model that I came across in Casco Viejo.