As I am writing this, I’m currently observing the outside of a stunning hotel located right along the Panama Canal. This hotel is the Radisson Hotel. Yes, I’m back in Panama for another round. I’m by the pool, facing the Bridge of the Americas. This specific area leaving and entering Panama City if more often than not backed up. So trying to remove myself from that stress of a thought, I focus back on my own reality and tranquil moment.
I’m in the mildly cool pool working on my arm exercises, I hear the purr of an engine of a large vessel and look up see a huge cargo ship passing by. I am in awe of these huge ships and the process of traveling across vast seas to arrive at this point. I think about the people working on this ship. I’m curious about just how it functions and how long it takes as well as wanting to hear the stories. I imagine the chaotic storms and waves the ship is tested by.
On this specific trip, my travel companion and I decided to go to a couple places. Colon and Taboga, Panama. Colon, I hate to say was very depressing. The city seems very oppressed and just sad. There was so much trash along the roads, down alleys and the buildings. It was like a horror film really. Along the road I seen a man who had a set up under a covered bus stop as if it were his bedroom. I couldn't imagine laying on an air filled mattress and have everyone coming and going. But, apparently that was acceptable, as it seems he had been there for some time. I've seen parts of Panama that were bad, but this one city, I never care to visit again. There was a hotel called the New Washington Hotel. I imagine back in the days that it was built it was spectacular. But, even with all of the rehabilitation to it, it kinda fits in with the city. I can't say I would want to endure one night there. However, the details to the building were gorgeous.
While in Colon, we wanted to visit Portobelo. This was about one hour from Colon, depending on traffic. We stopped along the way to eat at a nice restaurant, Black Zambombo, which was on the water. It also had a hotel where you could stay. The historical site of San Lorenzo was pretty interesting. I did love the way the grass was growing along the stones, it was beautiful even though the battles here I'm sure were brutal. My imagination grew wild in my moments of walking along the cobblestone. I envisioned all the battles here and the amount of gold that was traveling through this area from Peru. It is a wonderful history and I'm glad I was able to walk along this path that once was a battleground for all the riches that dared to pass.
After taking a few days break, we decided to go to Taboga for our last full day in Panama City. You can take a ferry from the Amador Causeway. The ferry cost on Taboga Express for roundtrip is $24. Granted I wasn't feeling too good on this day, so my review may be a bit skewed. First of all, it was insanely hot on this day closing in on 100 degrees with the humidity, then heat index was horrible. The ferry was very crowded, so getting a seat in the covered area, was a must due to the heat. The ferry was passing by huge ships along the way to the island and I was not able to get the footage I was hoping for...both coming and going. However my drone footage of the island was pretty good, granted I thought I would pass out from the heat. The island was small and had some homes, restaurants, bars and hotels/hostels. There are no cars on the island but there are gold cart "taxis" that you could catch a ride for $5 each. They had areas where you could sit to have a drink on the beach under an umbrella. You could jet ski, snorkel and fish as well. All in all it was ok. I'm not sure about the food on the island, but there were lots of alcoholic beverages offered as you find your way around.