You must see the Sloth santuary in Costa Rica. This is not high drama, or thrill a minute aventure, but the only place in the world to interact with these creatures. Your hosts are the most knolegable on the subject in the world, period. The canoe trip they give through the costal estuary is great. The rainforest sounds are facinating. Wildlife is everywhere.
We LOVED the tour in Panama called "Authentic Embera Indian Village"!! (I'm not sure about my spelling of the tribe's name, but it's similar to that.) It was a great tour which took us on a drive thru a good bit of Panama (urban area), then into the jungle. Once in the jungle, you are taken to the banks of a river where some tribesmen are waiting to take you up the river to their village via loooonnnnnggg canoes (with outboard motors). There is a short ride up the river and the rest of the tribe is on the bank to greet you playing music. The village is authentic and beautiful and the people, though they do not speak English, could not be more gracious. I would do this tour again -- it was GREAT!
We were on the Coral-- I agree with the other poster re/ the Embera Indian Village. It was a great tour and I would recommend it. Be careful as there is a tour that is similar in name but goes to a re-created village.
If you like nature, getting out and away from the port area, etc, you can't go wrong on this tour. The Indians have crafts for sale, you can feel free to take photos ( just use good judgement ), they do a native dance wherein all can join in the fun, etc.
Have fun whatever you do. Let us know about your trip.
We will be taking the Coral Princess from LA through the Panama Canal to Ft. Lauderdale on 9/28. Thanks for the tips on the excursions in Panama and Costa Rica. If anyone else was on the repositioning cruise in the spring and has comments and/or suggestions I'd love to hear them. We are very excited about cruising on the Coral Princess and this will be the longest cruise (15 days) that we have taken. What should we be sure to do on this cruise?