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Archive for panama

An Island for Every Day

By Linda Tancs

Looking for an archipelago with as many islands as there are days in a year? Then look no further than San Blas in Panama. Comprising approximately 365 islands and cays (of which 49 are inhabited), they lie off the north coast of the Isthmus of Panama, east of the Panama Canal. The islands are home to the indigenous Kuna (or Guna), who maintain political autonomy from the mainland and control tourism. Thanks to their efforts, the islands retain a quiet, pristine character—in other words, rustic. That means no Wi-Fi, all-inclusives or shopping. One of the easiest ways to get there is to take a day tour from Panama City, visiting a handful of islands and including a local lunch. You might prefer that to an overnight in a hut with no water or electricity.

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Panama Canal’s Centenary

By Linda Tancs

An engineering marvel of its day, the Panama Canal manages five percent of  shipments worldwide, linking more than 144 routes, 1,700 ports and 160 countries in commerce.  The grand dame is celebrating her 100th birthday today with a makeover in the works that includes new locks, wider shipping lanes and bigger ports.  A canal cruise frequently lands on the bucket list of travelers.  Look for cruise deals highlighting the centennial, including increased transits (Holland America has nearly 30 full or partial transits on its 2014 schedule), stage celebrations and enrichment classes.

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