La Ceiba and Panama

Published: April 29th 2010
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Well finally left the carribean island of Utila.

Enjoyed chilling at Rainbow Village in La Ceiba for a few days before flying to the Pacific coast of Panama.
RV was a really nice place small, friendly, quiet and safe.
Basically sat by the pool, read two books and drunk the odd cold beer !

Only met a few people there mainly couples except Gary and his French friend from Chigaco ( sorry can't remember her name) who were heading to Utila for some diving, including helping to teach disabled divers.

No dogs following me here but I did have a 3 year old Margaret keep wanting me to for a swim and teach me the alphabet!

Got to La Ceiba airport only to be told that the tower was not working so my flight cancelled.
So they squeezed nine of us and our luggage and sent us on a 2 hr minibus ride to San Pedro Sula and moved our connecting flight out two hours.

Road was pretty good but the driving was pretty crazy.

Once in Miami and checked into my hotel went back to Waxy O'Conner Irish bar for a few missed Guinness's after not having one for twelve weeks! Made up for lost time at 7 bucks a pop!

Stayed in there until one in the morning watching the big UFC fight!

Next day back to Miami airport for my flight to Panama City which is on the Pacific coast of Panama, turned up early at the Irpot only to find that due to different country time changes my flight was an hour later than I thought!
So about five hours at the airport but it seemed to fly by!

Had arranged to meet Tim and Helen at Panama but they were catching a twelve hour bus ride from Costa Rica think sixteen hours including their other bus journey! Bless em! But we had not been in contact so was
not sure which hostel we going to. Took over an hour to get thru customs at Panama airport too.

It was great to walk out and see Tim and H there waiting for me.
We headed to the hostel checked in and sat down
to have a deserved cold beer.

The hostel Jungla House was cool we managed to get a room for the three of us with Air con for fifty bucks
each total for three nights!

I volunteered to take the top bunk and we let H have the double.
but then decided to put my mattress on the floor as worried about falling out as no safety bar plus would be
hotter up there!

The first day we visited the Casco Viejo (the old town) took a cab there and he advised us to keep way from some bits but think more of an issue at night, is in a poor area.

In case you did not know Captain Morgan the welsh pirate ransacked and burnt down old Panama City in 1671.
They are trying to regenerate the area.

We walked bloomin miles cos we decided to walk along the new promenade all the way round the bay of Panama, hardly saw anyone either!

We then got to the newer part of the city with loads of skyscrapers they call it the Miami of Central America. We kept walking but could not find anywhere for a bar or food as we were in the business district so ended up having lunch in a mall!

We got a little bit lost walking back to the hostel only a bit. think we walked around it lol but we made it back well done Tim. As you can see from the pickies was quite cloudy but a very muggy 32 degrees and H managed to get burnt!

Second day was sunnier and we (Canadian guy called Tad joined us) took a cab to the Miraflores locks on the Canal, very impressive but when we got there only small boat going through so after touring the four floors of the museum showing the history and future expansion of the canal we caught a "school bus" to a zoo about 10 k up the road, well we had to walk a bit of it in the raging heat.

The zoo was cool all jungley! But practically empty of people!
Our favourites were the Tapir (bit strange it poohed and urinated in it's water bath!) a Harpy eagle which is national bird of Panama and the monkeys. Was supposed to be a jaguar there but we could not see it!

We then decided to head back to the canal on way back and saw several humungus freighters going thru the canal, cool!

Few facts for you! Built by the French but finished by the Americans in 1914 as French ran out of money, 23000 men died building it mainly from yellow fever, takes 8 hours to pass from carribean to the Pacific through three lock systems, each of the three set of locks use 197 million litres of water for each lockage, expect total vessels passed thru the canal to be 1 million in 2010 since it opened!

Left the guys to catch my plane to Quito in Ecuador the following day, the city sits right on the equator but as it is 2850 m above sea level is cooler, around 20 daytime dropping to 14 at night. Oh and its raining and always cloudy due to the mountains. Anyway that's it for now will be heading off in the GAP bus this Saturday morning around seven in the morning so should have loads of cool blogs coming up, think Amazon and then Banos first on the itinerary as we head to Lima.

Finally managed to get $500 trav cheques changed after wandering around to every bank in Quito!lol


Additional photos below
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30th April 2010

goog to hear from you the other day mate! feel like i had a little preview to this blogg! the picture with your £3 sunnies on, is that a pink hat your wearing!! or is it the light reflecting off your red forehead!!! wont be far away from you next week, maybe you could pop over to antigua for a couple of days, we'll put you up of cousre, very good rates for travellers. take care mate, skype soon!! MARCO: AS YOU CAN SEE THIS IS NOT IN CAPTITALS!
30th April 2010

Not pink lol
Have a good holiday. No it is a faded purple hat given to me by jon inla pirata! :-)
3rd May 2010

Enjoyed the pics. I used to live here in 1998-1990.

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