Any comments re Panama Canal cruises appreciated. Ship info, length of cruise, train excursion? Interesting itinerary? Partial or complete? Looking for anyone who’s cruised any Panama Canal itinerary and your takeaway from your experience. Thank you.

Tags: Panama Canal Central America Panama Canal Transit

7 Answers

We have done both the partial and the full transit. I highly recommend the ocean to ocean (full transit). We went West to East and if we did it again would try it the other way (just for something different). We cruised on Princess and they included a canal expert with seminars in the auditorium. These were amazing and a must do as they explained the significance of each port of call and a lot about the building of the canal itself. We went through the original locks but could see the newer locks in operation. My general recommendation is: do it, don't put off as it is a wonderful experience!

Thank you so much for your response. Much appreciated! Happy cruising.

I agree with AuntPinkie. We have done both the partial and full transits of the original canal. It was an awesome experience. At least for me as I tend to be a bit of a history buff. I would react he full transit. We have done it both ways.

Maybe one of theses days a full transit can be a reality for us.

Unfortunately my wife has no desire to do the canal though I would love to. I just watched the NCL Gem go first west then east through the canal via their ship cam on the front of their ship.Lovely to watch.Would love to do the full transit.

My wife and I would both love this cruise. The problem is getting a house sitter for our four legged family for that length of time.

Fortunately for us I have a 36 yr old single son that lives in town and is happy to watch the house and dogs while we wander.

My daughter is out of the country on business for 8 months of the year and would rather spend time with her family when she is home. How selfish of her!Crying

(Just kidding - she deserves to stay at home when she can. She is also sacrificing some time to house sit for us on May)

We did a repositioning cruise from New york to long beach calif. going thru the "old" locks. They had panamanian dancers on board putting on a show and selling clothes and stuff from panama.( a narrator on the ships p a system telling all about the locks) Real interesting as ship had 1 foot clearance on each side, needless to say the ship needed a paint job as it was scraped pretty good. Carnival had a helicopter flying overhead taking photos of the ship going thru. We took 2 partials thru the "new" locks leaving out of Galveston. Not as good as the thru transit, but we got to see how the new locks work.(they have a narrator on board also) We took an excursion on Gatun lake, the lake that feeds the canals, real educational,and got to see the ships go thru the locks from a land view. We like cruising, so trip number 3 is booked for January next year. It is called a journey and during the 14 day run to the canal you stop in many great ports. 14 day cruise is a little lenghty for us now as we been on the Freedom on all sailings, but when you look back it is time and money well spent.

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