Beautiful Beaches on the Panama Canal Sunfarer Itinerary

Thanks to Craig of for sending in this post from his recent Caribbean cruise on Zuiderdam.

The chance to pass through the Panama Canal easily convinced me to board a cruise ship. It is a “bucket list” travel experience and I was not alone. Most of the 1,900 plus passengers selected passage on the Zuiderdam for the same reason – the Panama Canal.

Honestly, I didn’t focus much on the other ports of call, yet I remember them all now after my visit. And I especially remember the beaches. Half Moon Cay, Aruba and Curacao all can provide the perfect beach escape.

Half Moon Cay

If you found the perfect beach would you buy it? Well, Holland America did. The softest sand, crystal-clear water and now thanks to Holland America all the amenities any one would ever want on a beach. From a simple hammock (where I spent my day), to high-end cabanas, you’ll find everything on the island. The stop is a perfect first stop and the perfect beach to get everyone in the holiday mood.



With the mantra of bring your scuba to Aruba, I decided to take the De Palm Island excursion with a chance to swim alongside tropical fish. The reef, just a few meters from the shore, was loaded with colorful fish but the beach was, well you don’t go on this excursion for the beach.

However, when we returned to the ship, we had five hours before departure and I decided to chase the sunset. I took a taxi from the pier to the local hotel bar at Eagle Beach. I ordered a cocktail and then walked down to the water’s edge. There I kicked off my flip flops, walked on the soft sand and watched the sun set. Beautiful.



On the island of Curacao, I didn’t take an excursion since an old friend lived on the island. With pride in his heritage he wanted to show me everything, but time didn’t allow. We decided to do some beach hopping and catch up over a few cold bottles of beer.

We stopped at a few remote beaches and beach clubs as he briefed me on the island’s history and his future plans. My favorite stop, Daaibooi Beach, just had a few Talapas and umbrellas on a near virgin scene. No major development here. Just the way I like it.


So, yes, I selected the cruise because of its passage through the Panama Canal, but I also had the chance to truly discover some wonderful beaches on the way. And as I learned, each island offers a unique beach experience, and on each island the beach was just as beautiful as the next.

Stay adventurous, Craig

Craig Zabransky has traveled through over 40 countries and 40 states and continues to travel around the world to write tales of adventure, aimed to encourage and inspire others to take and make adventure in their life. More of his global travels can be found on his Stay Adventurous website.


Join the Discussion

One Comment

  1. Scott Lara January 9, 2013 at 3:10 pm - Reply

    Wow. Great post! Follow me on Twitter @scottlara1961

Leave A Comment

Sign up for special offers and announcements

Related Articles