Thursday, January 31, 2008
Colon / Cristobel – N09.20.814; W079.54.585 Oct 12 – Oct 16, 2007
One cannot pass by the home of the Panama Canal without stopping. This was a good opportunity to do a final provisioning before heading out to the San Blas, do our check-out and get last bits and pieces that may be needed including bottom paint for KS. Panama has the distinction of being one of the few places on the planet where you can find/buy anything that is manufactured anywhere, because they sooner or later all pass thru the canal on the way from someplace to someplace. We anchored in ‘the flats’, the cruising anchorage and it was a somewhat rally anchorage being such a busy sea port with everything from huge supertankers and cruise ships to the smallest sailboats. Ships pass by here to go or come from the Canal. As advertised, this is an excellent stop for good provisions in Super 99 and Rey’s. Diesel, Gas & Propane are available here and of course the ‘Duty Free Shopping Zone’.
The Panama Yacht Club is friendly to transient 'yachties' and offers laundry at $1 per load, place to get rid of garbage, good food in restaurant and Internet. Having said all that, Colon is not a very clean city, and not recommended as a safe to walk about. Traffic is at a standstill most of the time, however, we were lucky to find a great taxi driver Mr. Ellington (The Duke) who was not only knowledgeable and friendly, but being a local, knows his way around, as he says, if he can’t find it, it can’t be found in Panama. We highly recommend him and look forward to a revisit with him when we return to this Path between the Seas for our transit to the Pacific side.