Panama Trip

3/16/09 - 3/30/09

 

Map of Panama

I found in researching all of our Lodging decisions that Trip Advisor was by far the best resource.

 

Weather Forecast | Weather Maps | Weather Radar | Hurricane Center

 

 

We are leaving Austin on 3/16/09 - our flight leaves from San Antonio. We are staying in the Best Western to use the shuttle service to the airport.

Then we leave for Panama @ 7:20am


FLIGHT INFORMATION

Tue, 17MAR09 CO28961 L SAN ANTONIO
(SAT) 7:20AM HOUSTON BUSH INTL
(IAH) 8:18AM ERJ-145

Tue, 17MAR09 CO875 L HOUSTON BUSH INTL
(IAH) 9:00AM PANAMA CITY
(PTY) 1:05PM 737-800 Snack

Mon, 30MAR09 CO873 L PANAMA CITY
(PTY) 10:05AM HOUSTON BUSH INTL
(IAH) 2:14PM 737-900 Snack

Mon, 30MAR09 CO6 L HOUSTON BUSH INTL
(IAH) 3:45PM SAN ANTONIO
(SAT) 4:49PM

 

3/17 - Our first night in Panama we are spending the night @ the Hotel Roma Plaza because it is close to the Marcos A. Gelabert Airport which is the Domestic Airport. All flights from the airport are only within the country. We arrive in Panama @ 1:05pm and it's about a 30 minute ride from the Tocumen International Airport to the hotel.

3/18 - 3/20 - The next morning we leave on Air Panama for the San Blas Islands (we are going to be in Boca del Tores and Boquete - Click on those links from the menu) - More good info on the island - We are staying at this really neat hotel on the island - Yandup Inn - We will be there from 3/18/09 - 3/20/09. This is an all inclusive - meals are the catch of the day - can't get much fresher than that.

 

3/20 - 3/23 - On 3/20/09 back on Air Panama and back to Panama City - we will be in the city until 3:30pm then catch a flight to Boca Del Tores. We are staying @ The TierraVerde Inn - This is another really cool place. We have a friend who lives in Boca and is going to show us around the area - nothing  like having a native tour guide...

We will be in Boca from 3/20/09 - 3/23/09.

 Then the best of the whole trip is about to come - hop on Aeroperlas Airlines and head down to David.

David is the third largest city of Panama and the capital of the Chiriqui province.

The Chiriqui province, in Panamá, is a newest tourism destination with abundance of natural resources like mountains, sea, islands, rainforest, coral reefs, trails, volcanoes, beaches, most of them enclosed in national parks and natural reserves, with rich Indian cultural roots, like the Ngobe Indians, in an environment natural designed to make a lot of activities like travel, scuba diving, trekking, snorkeling, rafting, canoeing, fishing, bird watching and many more.

In their main cities and towns (David, Boquete, Volcan, Cerro Punta, Alanje, San Félix) it is possible to find tourism services (hotels, inns, cabins, lodges, restaurants, bars, discotheques, tour operators) and, if you want to stay for a long time, beautiful properties.

We have several options her for transportation to Boquete (more later about Boquete)

We can rent a car

Taxi

Panama Taxi service

Taxis in Panama are abundant. You can recognize them easily due to their bright, distinctive paint jobs. They also have a number painted on them, which you may use to register any complaints (or compliments). Taxis may be hailed in the street, engaged at a taxi stand, or reserved by telephone. Many people share cabs, called a colectivo ; there is a small surcharge for each additional passenger.

Fares are determined by zones in Panama City, rather than meters. Drivers must have a zone chart with them at all times. In the event that a passenger does not feel the charges are correct, he/she may request that the zone chart is consulted. Because most cabs are not metered, you should settle the fare before embarking, which is a good time to ask the driver to show you the zone charges. The fares for traveling within city boundaries are quite reasonable, generally ranging between US$1 and US$2, which makes this good transportation for the business traveler.

Radio Taxi companies:
America [507] 223-7694
El Parador [507] 238-9111
Latino [507] 226-7313
Unico [507] 221-4074

Private "hotel taxis" can also be arranged by your hotel, prior to your arrival. For US$30 to $100 they offer a luxurious, though overpriced, ride in a large, air-conditioned American car directly to your hotel. Transportation in a hotel taxi, like the regular taxi, takes about 15 minutes door to door. Look for your hotel representative either holding a sign in the passenger arrivals area, or proceed outside and look for the parked cars behind the regular taxis.

Bus

Travel Panama by Bus

A bus system services all accessible areas of the country. Embarkation from Panama City to any of the major cities in the interior, such as El Valle, Col ón, David, or Aton, requires going to the new Gran Terminal de Albrook, located near the downtown area. Buses leave throughout the day at hourly intervals or less, depending on destination. It is not a rapid form of transportation, but it is fairly comfortable and dependable.

The traveler can take an overnight bus from Panama City to Bocas del Toro, Chiriquí Grande, and Changuinola. This service is offered by Union de Buses Panamericanos (tel: [507] 229-6333), whose office is situated on Via Fernandez de Cordoba, next to a restaurant called Felicidad. The buses are air-conditioned and full service.

Urban buses are easily recognized, painted in bright, colorful schemes. Most are the "school bus" variety, with seating that is sometimes lacking in comfort and air-conditioning, but they service almost every part of the city. Passengers pay a flat fare at the turnstile when boarding.

3/23 - 3/26 - I think that is going to be by far the best part of the trip - Boquete is a small down in the middle of the Rain Forest.

We are going to be staying at the El Oasis B&B

This is going to be our first adventure

ZIP Line through the canopy of the forest (sure hope I can get up the courage to get that high off the ground - 10' ladders bother me) as you can see we will be sometimes 60 Meters  (196.85 Feet) above the ground.

The next day is more my speed

ATV ride

We are going to do the 3.5 hours that includes the Tour of the Coffee Plantation.

We still have a couple of days on the backend so we thought that we would take a tour of the

Marine National Park.

On 3/29/08 - Hop back on a plane and back to Panama to leave :<(...