Pay a visit to one of the world’s finest engineering feats—the Panama Canal. Thousands of ships pass through the canal every year, so you’ll have a good chance of seeing one go through when you visit. Or, you can even book a tour aboard a crossing vessel, letting you experience the journey first-hand.
The easiest way to visit the Panama Canal is at Miraflores Locks, located just outside of Panama City. Here, there’s a viewing center with stadium-style seats to watch the boats, as well as a nice historical visitor’s center. You’ll learn fun facts about the Canal, including one about the American adventurer who swam it—like a boat, he was charged by weight for his crossing. Entry to the exhibits and viewing center is just $8 for adults.
A trip to Miraflores Locks can easily be done in a day-trip from Panama City. It’s definitely doable to visit on a self-guided trip (hire a taxi or drive your rental car to the locks). There are also a number of tour companies running short trips there and back from the city.
Where Is it? In Panama, not far from Panama City. Fly to Tocumen International Airport (check prices).
Where to Stay? At the Country Inn and Suites Panama Canal, where you can book a room with a view of the canal.
What Else Should I Know? Keep in mind that if you want to take a boat through the whole canal, it usually takes around nine hours.
Who’s it for? Sailors, kids, historians.
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