We are booked for a Princess Panama Canal cruise on Feb 4th. Any suggestions for tours? Will ther ebe tours we can book at the docks or should we take ships tours? Has anyone done the eco tour? How about beaches? Any info would be appreciated. Karen
We did this cruise on Crown Princess last year.
We took bus tours at both ports. At Cartagena, you tour a fort on foot, and there are lots of stairs. We did not take the tour through the trees at Limon, but our friends did. They said it was interesting, but a LONG ride there and back, and they didn't see any animals........but they were still glad they did it! Hope you have a great cruise.......one of the most beautiful sights ever, is departing from Cartagena at about sunset......gorgeous!
I have not been to Limon but have been to Cartagena twice.
You can just hop off the ship, go to the visitor's center (very clean, very nice) and there are cab starters just outside. You can hire a cab with or without an English-speaking tour guide. We said we didn't need a guide (I speak some Spanish) but one came along for the ride, anyway.
I believe we paid somewhere around $20 US for four hours. On the last trip, I was travelling with another woman and we had shopping on our minds. However, we did check out the fort, went to the central square and walked around for about an hour while our driver and guide took coffee at an outdoor cafe and kind of kept an eye on us, then we went to The Dungeons for "el shoppiando."
The guide had departed at that point, and the driver just sat under a tree having a soda while we shopped. When we got down to the serious bargaining for a somewhat expensive item, we asked the driver for assistance and he got the price down even lower. It seemed that the driver was a cousin of everyone in The Dungeons.
With the ship's ShoreX, your shopping time will be limited. Keep that in mind, if it's important to you.
If you shop at The Dungeons, start at the left as you face the arcade and work your way to the right.
You will be accosted by a lot of guys trying to sell you postcards and other junk. "No" is the same in almost every language. Try not to make eye contact.
If I can offer any other help, please don't hesitate to ask.
pamda -- CM First-Time Cruisers Editor and Fierce Freelancer