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Bigfish7

Carnival Miracle March 2020 Panama Canal from Miami

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We've booked & are very excited about this trip.  I'd love to start exploring possible shore excursions, but can't find much to consider.  Does anyone have experience with this particular itinerary?

 

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We did a 14 day Journey's trip which included the Panama Canal. Where are you going? We used a Carnival Excursion in Costa Rico and wished we had in Cartagena. I don't know if you cruise is going there or not.

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Posted (edited)

I did this on the Legend back in 2014.  One of the best cruises I've ever had.  From memory, I think we did Cayman, Cartegena, transit through the canal, Costa Rica and Cabo, ending in Long Beach.  The one place I would strongly recommend a ship's tour is Cartegena. 

 

The highlight of course is the day's transit through the canal.  Carnival had someone narrating the experience most of the day.  

 

Edited by meanjean80
correct spelling

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I'm hoping to avoid ship's shore excursions & come up with some independent options.  Our stops:  Santa Marta, Cartagena, Puerto Limon & Puntarenas, Puerto Quetzal along with Cabo San Lucas.

 

This was on our bucket list for several years.  A re-positioning which will work perfectly for us :-)

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We sailed on the Miracle through the Canal from Long Beach last January. 
Booked a private whale watching tour in Cabo.  It was amazing.    https://whalewatchcabo.com/

We had an excellent private excursion in Cartagena as well, but I do not remember the name of the company. It was run by a woman. 
We did a ship excursion in Guatemala because everything is at least a two-hour ride from the port.   If it's offered, do not do the Mayan Ruins tour.  Not worth the time or money. (If you absolutely must do the ruins, wear long pants & take a jacket, it's at altitude)   Go visit Antigua instead.
In  Puntarenas Costa Rica we did a ship excursion to a coffee plantation that was excellent.  Very informative, fun and there was food and shopping time included.   

We did not have a stop in Puerto Limon, but I hear there is an excellent sloth rescue there. 
 

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We did a Panama Canal cruise on December 2, 2000 (19 years ago) on the Tropical and I can still remember the cruise so you can tell, this is a good cruise.  We did not go completely through the canal but went as far as Gatun Lake and stayed there for an hour or two.  There were about 15 or more ships waiting to continue going through the canal.  Seemed like there was only a foot of space between the walls of the canal and the ship and the Tropical was not a large ship.  I understand now that China has bought considerable land on both sides of the canal.

 

You picked a good cruise.

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I went back in my records and came up with these picture.  The ports were Cartagena, Columbia, Limon, Costa Rica and of course the Panama Canal.  I know they are old but will give you some ideas and some thing to compare to.  Be interesting to see what has changed.

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One of my bucket list cruises. Please come back and tell us all about it with lots of pics.

 

Thanks richfret for all the photos. 

 

 

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Posted (edited)

We just did the full transit on NCL two weeks ago. Use Dora the Explorer in Cartagena from Trip Advisor if you want a spectacular tour in Cartagena. She’s 5 star, check out the reviews. Also, if you are in good physical health and can make the 4.3 mile climb you must try the Pacaya volcano hike from Puerto Quetzal. Beautiful hike and the volcano is amazing. May I also suggest Gio Tours 8 in 1 in Puntarenas for a great day .... Trip advisor and great reviews . They were wonderful a couple weeks ago. I can attest that all of these tours were spectacular and I booked them a year ahead and they have great communications for making reservations. Any questions, let me know. 

Edited by tallnthensome

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21 hours ago, Gypsywych said:

We had an excellent private excursion in Cartagena as well, but I do not remember the name of the company. It was run by a woman. 
 

 

It had to be Dora that I mentioned in the post above I would imagine.

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15 minutes ago, tallnthensome said:

It had to be Dora that I mentioned in the post above I would imagine.

 

Yes! That is her. Thank you. 

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1 hour ago, tallnthensome said:

Also, if you are in good physical health and can make the 4.3 mile climb you must try the Pacaya volcano hike from Puerto Quetzal. Beautiful hike and the volcano is amazing. 

How bad is the hike? I mean is it really steep or can most people that are ambulatory do it. The reason I ask is I would like to do it when we go but  I'm almost 60. I'm in reasonably good health but have my aches and pains. Hubby is a bit younger than me but is overweight but pretty active as his job requires it. I'm just wondering if it's something we could do?

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