Vacation in Panama

On our first day in Panama we drove over 300 miles, which was pretty insane since we only average 80-100 miles on driving days.  Needless to say we were exhausted and devoured an entire pizza and ended up sleeping at our very first gas station.  At first we were a bit disappointed at the idea of a gas station until we pulled in and realized it was more like what you would see in a European gas station.  Free showers, clean restrooms, wifi, beer and wine and a gourmet menu.  We slept pretty well, considering the amount of massive semi trucks that pulled in and out all night long.

Waterfall

After the long drive and the night at the truck stop we had one more day before we met Austin’s parents in Panama City.  We found yet another gorgeous camp spot in the Coclé Province at an Eco Hotel and spent yet another Sunday playing in a waterfall.  We had the camping area all to ourselves and enjoyed a peaceful night listening to the wildlife and the rush of the waterfall.

Panama City

Austin’s parents finally arrived and we couldn’t have been more excited.  The plan was to sped a few days in the city and then a few days on the beach.

If you visit Panama City then you must go to the following sites:

  1. Casco Viejo – Contains the old quarters of the city and has numerous cafes, live music and gorgeous architecture.
  2. Panama Canal – There is can’t miss museum at the Miraflores visitor center.  We spent about two hours in the museum and finished up just in time to watch a few massive cargo ships come into the locks.  Plus, we could enjoy the view over cocktails in the little cafe above the museum.

We didn’t have time to visit the fish market, but some friends of ours went and said it was also a must see.   We also found getting around Panama is best with Uber.  The traffic and the roadways can be congested and not the easiest to navigate, but Uber worked great for us during our visit.

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Beach Time

After doing a little bit of site seeing in the city, it was time to head to the beach! Austin’s parents found an amazing condo on Airbnb and spent the next couple of days soaking up the sun, drinking cocktails, watching breathtaking sunsets and of course playing Mexican train.

El Valle – Market Day

We decided to take a break from the beach and headed into the mountains to a little town called El Valle.  It was a beautiful drive into the mountains and we were pleasantly surprised to find it was a market day!  The market was filled with fresh produce, vibrant flowers and fun trinkets.

We were so thrilled to have Austin’s parents share in our adventure and we were incredibly grateful that they allowed us to share their vacation with us.  It was an early morning teary goodbye as we headed to get Ol’ Blue inspected before shipping and Austin’s parents headed to the airport.


3 thoughts on “Vacation in Panama

  1. I can only hope to aspire to your travels. My girlfriend and I are just getting introduced to overlanding and have a few short trips planned over the next two years. One on the Trans Wisconsin Adventure Trail and one around the White Rim in Moab. I’ve only just now discovered your blog so if you have any advice for trip planning and the like I’d love to hear it.

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    1. Thank you so much Tobias for your kind words! We still have a lot more information to add to our site but working on the road has proved difficult for us. Here is a link to the blog that first inspired us to do this trip. http://www.ruinedadventures.com/?m=1

      Also, if I had to give one piece of advice it would be to start saving now! You can’t do the trip without money but it’s easy to dream.

      We are happy to answer any of your questions so please feel free to email us at 4runner4adventure@gmail.com

      What kind of vehicle are you thinking about taking?

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      1. Thank you. We will check it out the blog. Saving is incredibly important. I put money away every week hoping for our future. Since we are right out of college we have quite a bit of debt that takes priority, but once we have that paid off we should be able to make a 3 month trip happen. (My girlfriend is a teacher and has the summers off ) from what I’ve heard the average cost for two people if well planned is about $100 per day. Maybe you’ve had a different experience.

        As for our vehicle. We have a 2013 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited that we are building for off-road and overland excursions. I should have a rig page put together soon if you want to take a look. Right now it is pretty stock. We are thinking going with ARB Bars, a Warn Winch, 33-inch Tires (haven’t decided yet which brand). We probably won’t do a roof top tent until we are ready to leave on an extended trip.

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