Old Panama

Added 31 Mar 2012
Sadly it's time to disembark the National Geographic Sea Lion this morning. Luggage is loaded onto our private coaches, picnic lunches are counted, and we say our goodbyes. Richard is one short on his coach only to discover Dawn is hiding a guest as a trick! This is pay-back for a similar event earlier in the tour? Leaving Colon we drive back across the Isthmus of Panama to the Pacific and enjoy a visit to Old Panama. There are ruins of original stone buildings here, including the tower of the first cathedral from which there are excellent 360 degree views. We also visit the Old Panama Museum and nearby artisan market. It's pretty hot, so copious amounts of water are handed out and we're delighted when it looks like rain. However the rain only lasts 2 minutes! Arriving in the outskirts of Panama City we drive across the Bridge of the Americas to Playa Bonita and check-in at the InterContinental Playa Bonita Resort. This is a luxurious hotel with a large private Pacific coast beach, beautiful gardens and umpteen swimming pools. Every bedroom faces the sea and has a garden terrace or balcony. We're all overjoyed to find that our bathrooms are nearly as big as the whole of our ship cabins! We have so much space we're not quite sure what to do with it. Dinner this evening is a private buffet with a truly extensive choice. However, despite Richard's and Dawn's encouragement to enjoy a leisurely meal, the buffet table resembles a marine bird feeding frenzy at times! There is plenty of food for us plus another 60 people of course!