Panama (14/22-Jul)

After landing in the San Blas islands, I took a small boat to reach the continent... then reached Panama City in a 4WD (4 wheel drive car). I stayed there longer than expected due to some... issues.

panama.gif
I guess nobody knows much about Panama... Everyone knows about the Canal, and that's probably almost all. On my side I new one ex-football player too, Dely Valdes, and one boxer, Roberto Duran... But that was pretty all. Well, in Panama, the canal is definitely the major thing, especially since 1999 when the canal was retroceded from USA to Panama. This brings a lot of money to this country and therefore "controls" all the activity there. The canal is definitely very impressive as it looks really small compared to the boats that are using it. And I guess that the new canal which is currently built to accomodate bigger ships will be even more impressive. I ended up spending 2 days to see different things about the canal, ships passing in different parts (canal, lake...), the museum... And that's almost all I did. Still, landing in Panama city was full of surprises. It definitely looks like an american town, (probably like Florida, because of skin color and language :P) with big roads, big cars, big malls, everything clean... though it holds some "poor & dangerous" suburbs like the ones in all southamerican towns. After staying a few days in Panama (city), and replacing my dead cellphone (much more important as an alarm clock than as a cellphone)... I headed north, by plane, indetending to go to San Jose in Costa Rica. I did not have any problem to embark in Panama but when the aircraft stopped in David (north of Panama), I learnt that I was not allowed to go to Costa Rica. According to them I needed a ticket out of Costa Rica to be able to enter Costa Rica... and a ticket out of Mexico does not count (even if it counts in all nearby countries). So I was stucked there... and ended up going to the flower city of Boquete, which I could not enjoy so much because of the heavy rain. Then I decided to try the land route to Costa Rica... and did not have any issue to cross the border!!! Fuck people...

Photos here