From Cartagena to Cabo San Lucas, cruise the Panama Canal.
The Panama Canal is one of the most astonishing human-made wonders, a sliver of ingenuity that allows ships to move from one ocean to another. Cruise from the Pacific to the Atlantic, or vice versa, and take in the scenery as you move through this engineering marvel built in 1914. Along with the tropical views and modern design of the canal, there's also great opportunity for adventures on land and by the shore, where you can get in touch with the indigenous culture at the Museum of Oaxacan Art in Huatulco, Mexico, or go kayaking in Nicoya Bay at Puntarenas, Costa Rica.
From Cartagena to Cabo San Lucas, cruise the Panama Canal
Descend on some of the most exciting travel destinations in Central America during a Panama Canal cruise. Stops in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico; Puntarenas, Costa Rica; and Colón, Panama, means appreciating countless natural landscapes on top of traversing through the famous shortcut itself.
A stop in Colón, Panama, lets you lay on the sand at serene Maria Chiquita beach or hike your way through Portobelo National Park to reach the 17th-century San Lorenzo Fort. And if you're in the mood for the city life, head to Panama City, the Caribbean's most urban cluster that's only an hour away by car.
Along with crossing the impressive Panama Canal during your vacation, you can also get in touch with the local cultures of different countries, where indigenous peoples still live and where heritage and history are treasured and preserved.
Step into the past as you stroll down the Spanish Colonial lanes of Antigua in Guatemala, a picturesque town with pastel buildings and balconies filled with pink flowers. A short trip from the port at Puerto Quetzal, the city is home to museums like Casa de los Sueños, where the history of this town is depicted through art.
A cruise to the Panama Canal is filled with country-hopping adventures that take you to Mexico's Mayan ruins, white beaches in Cabo San Lucas or Colonial treasures in Colombia.
As part of your grand crossing of the Panama Canal, you can also laze on beaches and trek lush mountains in places like Mexico, Costa Rica, Colombia and Grand Cayman.
Cruise from Los Angeles or Miami and pick the trips that make your favorite stops. Prefer more of Mexico? There's a cruise with stops in Manzanillo, Puerto Vallarta and Cabo San Lucas. Want to include some Caribbean islands? Finish your cruise in Puerto Rico or stop in Grand Cayman.
Once you're crossing the canal, head to the front of the ship for the best view.
You'll get to see other ships as they cross, too, giving you a different vantage point and a new way of learning how the canal works.
The thrill is not over after you go through the canal locks, there's more to see as you travel through the canal, with tropical flora and fauna adorning the way.
Stopping at different cruise ports during a Panama Canal crossing makes it easy to savor the varied flavors of these countries, each with its own signature spice and tang.