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“Into the Wild”

Panama Canal Boat Eco Tour
Reviewed 24 May 2011

What a great way to feel immersed in Panama. We did the overnight trip. Consider the trip luxurious camping. You stay on the houseboat with average size rooms, and comfortable beds. Nothing fancy and a chemical toilet in the back. The location is in a small cove hidded in Lake Gatun. Picked up at a small dock in Gamboa, you get to dodge huge container ships as you head out. On the way we spotted sloths and howler monkeys. At the housebout we ate a delicious chicken lunch with a tamale, beans, a rice dish with fruit and nuts, and fresh fruit. Onto the kayak to a short hike to jump in the waterfall. Back to the housebout where the rum, beer or wine come out. Either enjoy the hammock, the menagerie of animals on board, fish, swim or kayak until dinner. We swam, then caught fish for dinner. In an hour 4 of us had about 15 fish. Dinner was fresh fried fish, pork, local vegetables, and beans. I cleaned my plate. Then off for a night safari. Carl caught a Caimin for us to look at, we saw fireflies, and a sloth eating in the trees. Once back, we visited with the other guests and Carl on the veranda with a dozen hammocks, enjoying Rum and cola. We got up in the morning and Kayak'd around while breakfast was being prepared. Then it was back on the boat to the trip back to Gamboa. An incredible array of activities crammed into one day.

4  Thank Napafoodie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviews (34)
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28 - 32 of 34 reviews

Reviewed 11 April 2011

I went on this tour with some friends not really knowing what to expect, and was blown away.
Many tour operators offer tours that take you around the canal and to the monkey island, but nowadays it gets crowded. But with Captain Carl, a funny and charismatic guide, it is totally different.
Rather that just taking us around the canal and to monkey island, we were taken to his private (self-built) boat house, where monkey's abound, uncrowded by other boats.
After arriving and eating a delicious panamanian lunch, we drank beers and hung out on hammocks until our next adventure started. We took kayaks through an artificial path through the canal rainforest to a natural spring waterfall that we all jumped off of, simply amazing.
To top it all off, Carl let us hold and take pictures withhis snake and crocodile, and introduced his tucan and night monkey to us all.
This is by far one of the best tours in panama, don't miss out!

2  Thank TheRegis
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 28 February 2011

My husband and I periodically visit our old friends in Panama on trips to Latin America. They suggested we try a day tour on the Panama Canal and recommended Capt Carl's house boat as one of the better nature adventures.
We were not disappointed. Not only did he give an informative visit to monkey island ( I'm sure the creatures there know him well as they respond to him as he calls out each of their names) but we enjoyed a magnificent visit to waterfalls in a beautiful, unspoiled jungle setting. The meal on the house boat was pleasant.and close up encounters with all the animals was exciting. My only regret was being too ' chicken' to be photographed holding the large Boa Constrictor.

Our next visit will certainly involve the overnight stay. Another couple on our tour stayed overnight and couldn't stop talking about the beauty and sounds of the jungle at night.
The Captain gave us a new website if you are interested.
www.junglelandpanama.com
Alyssa

5  Thank AlyssaN
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 December 2010

This is a fun boat tour through the Panama canal / jungle area, visit local animals, feed monkey, canoe to waterfalls, go swimming, watch big container ships / cruises cross the canal, see the new Panama canal expansion. This trip was lots of fun, a perfect day trip in Panama with a very professional and knowledgeable tour guide: Captain Carl.

I was picked up at 8:30am at my Hotel in Panama City. The drive to Gamboa, in a comfortable Toyota van, was about 30 minutes, where we met our host Captain Carl. A fun, yet professional tour guide, who actually lives in the jungle.

We were a group of about 10 people from the US, Europe and South America. The morning part we toured the Panama Canal by boat, first getting a detailed tour on how the Panama canal was built, how the seas were designed to capture rain water needed for the locks in raising the big ships. We also visited the new sites where the Panama canal is being expanded to allow more and even larger vessels cross the oceans.

One of the highlights of the trip was to feed Capuchin monkeys. Once we got closed to them, they jumped on the boat and took our treats. Captain Carl had provided us with peanuts and bananas upfront; he had also explained to us the safety guidelines about feeding the monkeys.

Lunch time we went to a house boat, where very yummy and delicious lunch was served: Caribbean flavored chicken and rice with Panama tamales. Vegetarian dishes were also available for those who didn’t eat meat.

After lunch, we went canoeing to a nearby waterfall, where we went swimming. Along the way we met many bird species. Around 3pm we canoed back to the house boat, where we left at 3:30pm to head back to our hotels.

I was very impressed with our tour guide, who was fluent in English and Spanish, as well as very knowledgeable. We were a mixed group of English and Spanish speaking tourists. We saw at least 20 different kinds of birds, many kinds of vegetations and received detailed information about all of them.

Overall the tour is also organized very professionally. Pickup and drop off at the hotel was on time. We had a professional driver. The boat was equipped with life vests for everyone, and Captain Carl made sure we all followed the safety guide lines he gave us, especially when animals would come near us. Also the food was good quality.

I highly recommend this tour to anyone visiting Panama, it is a great experience and lots of fun.

For more info, please visit:
http://panamatours.com.pa/index.php/Panama-Canal-Tour.html

6  Thank HappyTraveller213
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 2 April 2017 via mobile
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Thank Daniel R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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