Colon to Panama City

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All good things must come to an end. After 7 days on our boat the Sea Lion, we were at the end of our journey though Costa Rica and the Panama Canal. We started by exiting the canal (and our boat) at Colon, Panama and made our way to Panama City by land. Colon, Panama. [Read more …]

Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute

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After we got through the first set of locks on the Panama Canal at night, we anchored for the evening. Following a beautiful sunrise, we were pleased to learn that we would be making a visit to the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute (STRI). This world-renowned research facility was created and operates a biological reserve on [Read more …]

Cruising the Panama Canal

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You might say that if you have been through one canal, you have been through them all. Yes, that’s true. But how many times do Americans get to go through something the size of the Panama Canal. That was our main purpose of taking a 7 day boat cruise on the 60-person Seal Lion run [Read more …]

Exploring the Wildlife In Panama

Panama’s Coiba National Park Continuing on our Costa Rica/Panama Canal cruise with Lindblad National Geographics, we left Costa Rica and entered into Panama and arrived in Panama’s Coiba National Park. This group of islands, once a penal colony to hold President Manuel Noriega’s political enemies, is now one of Panama’s newest national park. It is [Read more …]

Cruising through Costa Rica’s National Parks

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We are not cruise people. But we have been on some cruises when absolutely necessary to experience particular destinations. For example: Yangtze River in China, which we took while the Three Gorges Dam was still being built and we saw first hand China’s relocation of what would end up being 1.3 million people during the [Read more …]

Bonaire Restaurants and Hotel

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Bonaire Restaurants Although we only had five days (lunches) and four evenings (dinners) in Bonaire, we tried, as always, to make the most of our dining opportunities. And since we were on an island, the vast majority of our meals consisted of seafood. This, however, did limit our choices, since the only four [Read more …]

Snorkeling in Bonaire

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Bonaire and its much smaller sister island, Klein Bonaire, have more than 100 dive and snorkeling sites in protected marine preserves. Combined, they provide access to 57 species of hard and soft coral and 350 species of fish, including 111 endangered species. We had a chance to sample about 10 of these sites–six [Read more …]

Bonaire: A Snorkeling Paradise

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We first visited the tiny island of Bonaire more than 15 years ago and found some of the best diving that we had done in the world. It became a place that we wanted to revisit, so we booked 5 days to re-explore the island and the seas.  Bonaire was discovered by Amerigo [Read more …]

Willemstad Curacao Restaurants and Hotel

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Willemstad Restaurants With only 2 days on Curacao, we only had time to visit a few restaurants–two for dinner and the third on our list, for lunch–and then, one waterfront bar. BijBlauw. The restaurant at our hotel was nice and casual, with a handful of tables just barely above wave level (where we [Read more …]

Exploring Curaçao

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We wanted to visit Curaçao from the first time we saw pictures of the Dutch-style brightly colored pastel buildings. So we made our way to the capital and largest city Willemstad for 2 days. The buildings are even prettier in person. What we didn’t realize, however, was that unless you choose to spend hours in [Read more …]