Explore the wonder of the Panama Canal and beauty of Costa Rica

The Panama Canal was an idea nearly 400 years in the making.

The earliest mention of a canal across the Isthmus of Panama occurred in 1534, when Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor and King of Spain, ordered a survey for a route through the Americas that would ease the voyage for ships traveling between Spain and Peru. In August 1914, that vision nearly 380 years in the making came to fruition with the Panama Canal. The length of the Panama Canal from shoreline to shoreline is about 40 miles (65 km) and from deep water in the Caribbean Sea Atlantic to deep water in the Pacific about 50 miles (82 km).

The Panama Canal, with its 12 locks, has saved ships up to 3,500 nautical miles of travel on voyages between one coast of North America and ports on the other side of South America. The United States spent almost $500 million (roughly equivalent to $9.1 billion now) to finish the canal, by far the largest American engineering project to date.

Now, you can witness this engineering marvel one of the greatest man-made wonders of the worldin person as part of our nine-day journey through the mighty locks of the Panama Canal to the Costa Rican rainforest, Jan. 16-24, 2020, through Gohagan Travel. You will cruise for seven nights from Colón, Panama, to Puerto Caldera, Costa Rica, aboard the exclusively chartered, Five-Star Le Duomnt D’urville, which launched in 2019 featuring Blue Eye, the world’s first multisensory Observation Lounge.

This journey of a lifetime also features the Earth’s most pristine ecosystems in the rainforests, islands and archipelagos of Panama and Costa Rica during the best time of year.

As part of this comprehensive itinerary, you will:

  • Explore the heart of Panama City’s UNESCO World Heritage-designated Casco Antiguo — the city’s old town — and tour acclaimed architect Frank Gehry’s only design in Latin America, Panama City’s Biodiversity Museum. Also, explore the rarely visited Isla Cébaco to discover the rich marine life in its vivid coral reefs.
  • Visit the stunning and biodiverse Manuel Antonio National Park, where expert naturalists will lead you on a trail walk through an ecosystem of rare endemic species, including the scarlet macaw and resplendent quetzal. The park is home to more than 100 species of mammals, almost 200 species of birds and a variety of reptiles and amphibians. It’s the country’s smallest national park (683 hectares) but contains a charming combination of rain forest, beaches and coral reefs.
  • Experience a daylight passage through the awe-inspiring Panama Canal and visit the San Blas Islands, where indigenous Guna people have maintained their traditional lifestyle for centuries.
  • Explore the terrestrial wonders of Curú National Wildlife Refuge and spend one night in a deluxe hotel in San José, Costa Rica.
  • Enjoy lectures by exclusive onboard study leaders throughout the itinerary. Extend your stay with the Dynamic Panama Pre-Program and Costa Rica’s Cultural and Natural Riches Post-Program Options.

It’s another fabulous trip though the #TravelingWildcats program! This trip is filling up fast, so book yours today.

To learn more about the travel program through the UK Alumni Association, visit www.ukalumni.net/travel.

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