Panama City – June 1st to 9th
After all our hopping around we wanted to have a relaxing last week on our trip. We stayed just outside Panama City at a beach resort with several pools and a nice long beach to walk along. It was a bonus to have good internet connections to start to reconnect with friends back home. We were all very excited to be heading state-side soon.
One afternoon we went to the old town area of Panama called El Casco Antiguo. It has quaint streets and plazas with lots of shops and restaurants. We walked around the Plaza de la Independencia and had dinner over by the Plaza de Francia. We shopped for Panama hats and learned that the traditional white hats with the black band are actually made in Ecuador! They were called Panama hats by Teddy Roosevelt so that was how they became known.
We also went to see the famous Panama Canal, one of the engineering marvels of the world. We visited the Miraflores Locks which were built in 1913. They had a very nice visitors center with a short movie about the construction and history of the canal. We enjoyed ice creams while watching the large ships come through the locks. Very interesting.