6th October 2009 - 9th October 2009
We took a night bus to Panama City and it took us much of the way across the country in one night. We arrived to Luna's Castle Hostel very early and crashed in a hammock till the staff woke up. We then took huge advantage of the free pancake mix and kitchen.
Panama is made up of an old and new city and we were staying in the old city which we found to be a beautiful area of old buildings, many half collapsed but it only adds to the style. We did walk a little too deep into the old area where it got dodgy and had an old man follow us for a while. We got out of the 'red zone' pretty quickly with no incident.
The receptionist at Luna's recommended a cheap restaurant and when I saw steak parma on the menu I had to have it. I never knew a blade cut steak with plastic cheese on top could be so good at about $1AUD….. or maybe I was just reeeally hungry.
We went shopping as everything seems to be cheap. Nikki bought a great Baby G watch for only $60AUD and was almost tempted to buy another computer like our trusty Eee PC for only $320AUD. She also replaced her iPod (it was left on a bus a few weeks earlier) with a new nano as travelling without an iPod to get you through the endless bus rides or noisy dorm rooms is near impossible.
We then caught a short cab ride to the Panama Canal. There is a main viewing deck and a small museum that explained the locks, construction and about the thousands that were killed by malaria during the construction. It was really fascinating to hear the history of it all and see the ships pass through the canal locks. They're even more than doubling the capacity of the canals at the moment to keep up with the worlds shipping needs which is almost impossible to believe.
Other than that we didn't do much else in the city except have dinner at a Hooters restaurant. It's pretty ridiculous they have these restaurants all over the world. Who would have thought!