Gatun Lake, Panama
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Approximately 6 Hours
Depart the pier for a scenic approximately 45-minute drive to a local marina to board a motor launch for a one-hour cruise. The lake was created in 1907 by damming the Chagres River. It and forms a major part of the Panama Canal passage, carrying ships during their transit across the Isthmus of Panama. Keep an eye out for monkeys, toucans, and sloths on the shoreline.
Make the most of an opportunity to encounter the Emberá Native people. This tribe still lives in harmony with the natural surroundings in the rain forest. Witness traditional song and dance along with music performed on handmade instruments. The Emberà possess an amazing botanical knowledge, and they are a warm and friendly people. You will have a chance to purchase Emberà Native handicrafts directly from the villagers.
Spend approximately one hour observing operations at the Agua Clara Expansion Locks observation area. Your guide will explain the engineering feat required to move ships over the Continental Divide that separates two oceans. The new locks offer a perspective of the Panama Canal that encompasses past, present and future. Learn about recent the Panama Canal expansion project with a detailed explanation from an expert. The design, construction and operation of the largest engineering project in the world is quite astounding.
After witnessing the locks in action, board your transportation for the drive to Colón, where you will meet the ship.
Wildlife sightings are likely but are not guaranteed. Tour departs from Gatún Lake and ends in Colón where you will re-join the ship. You may arrive in Colón before the ship does. The Panama Canal Authority assigns specific time slots for the transit of a vessel through the locks. The ship will anchor in a designated area and will wait for instructions. Once clearance is transmitted to the ship, procedures begin to bring the ship's tour passengers ashore. Therefore, tour departure times may vary and will be announced onboard. The return time of the ship to Colón may also be delayed due to transit through the locks. We recommend that you are prepared for any potential delay of the ship's arrival to Colón and plan accordingly by bringing any needed medication or essential items on tour. Facilities are available at the terminal in Colón while waiting for the ship's arrival in case of delay.