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About Panama Canal Tours
Enjoy a guided sightseeing tour and visit the most important sites and landmarks of Panama. Tour both the historical and modern areas of Panama City and visit the world-famous Panama Canal, whose impressive system of locks continues to fascinate visitors.
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Freddylasvegas wrote a review Today
Las Vegas, Nevada319 contributions75 helpful votes
We didn’t do a tour. We just had a taxi take us to the closest lock. We checked it out with no boat coming through. Pretty cool to see. We found out that it takes a boat about 8 hours to go through the lock. We walked through the museum and took some pics and watched a iTunes video on our phones and left. Still pretty awesome ti see and so glad we didn’t take a five our tour. Had another taxi take us to a Panama sign took some more pics and then went back ti our hotel to swim👍👍
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Date of experience: August 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
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Michael B wrote a review Jul 2022
West Sacramento, California22 contributions3 helpful votes
We flew to Panama from Costa Rica, for two days, specifically for this tour. The night before the tour, I wrote to confirm the pickup time the next day. I got a response back that the tour had been canceled. No prior notice at all other than the response to my inquiry. They then responded that there was a replacement tour called the Alternative Transit Tour and we could do that instead. This was significantly more expensive than our Partial Transit, but they said it would be no cost to "upgrade". I believe this Alternate tour exists ONLY to try and appease customers when the real tours have issues, so they claim it is more expensive to seem elite but has very little real value. We agreed to the seemingly better replacement since we were only there for the following day and to see the canal. Instead of getting our original Partial Transit tour, we got a replacement partial disaster. The tour was supposed to include many activities and things to see over a 5-hour period. Due to poor planning and massive traffic, we ended up only getting a shortened boat ride in the lake and the final minutes of the Miraflores locks being open to see 1 ship go through part of it. All in all, we got about 1.5 hours of "tour" for the original $800 we paid for the 4 of us. Things happen and tours can come up short, but the real reason for the 1/5 rating is the way they handled the complaint. The operator was responsive to all emails getting the business but then ghosted us when I wrote about our experience and asked for some consideration. I have included that email so that it's clear we weren't ghosted for being rude or a hothead. "Yesterday’s tour was rather disappointing. After being given a replacement for the original tour, the replacement ended up being a partial replacement with us only doing some of the activities and shortening others because of the 2 hours of traffic. Luis Pinto was a great tour guide and tried his best. He was able to get us to Miraflores Locks Visitor Center right as tickets closed (4:45p) but that was after a shortened boat tour, skipping stops along the way, skipping the bridge, and skipping the causeway. Basically got half of a rushed tour. Again, he was amazing but the tour fell short of descriptions and expectations. What consideration is given for this shortcoming?" Do not accept "replacements" and I would caution anyone against using this company at all, given the way we were treated.
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Date of experience: July 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
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Response from Ivan E, Manager at Panama Canal Tours
Responded 2 weeks ago
Dear Sir, We are sorry that your tour was cancelled, there were widespread protests across the country with street closures. This prevented the realization of the tour. Since many supplies did not arrive and the workers would not arrive due to the closure of streets, thank God, already resolved. We asked you if you agreed to take the alternative option, a little more expensive but at the same price. According to the guide Luis Pinto, you did not want to do the last part of the tour due to the huge traffic jams on the highway, the product of two situations: the celebration of Children's Day and, on the other hand, the protests. We are sorry for the situation, come back to Panama and you will get a discount for your transit boat tour. We will send you email. Thank you.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
Walter290 wrote a review Jul 2022
3 contributions
A dream come true, transiting the Panama Canal by boat. Thanks to Panama Canal Tours, trip organized by Ivantours. The locks are impressive, Gatun Lake is huge. The best tour.
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Date of experience: June 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
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Qualnurse wrote a review Jul 2022
Bullhead CIty, AZ193 contributions156 helpful votes
We spend a little over a week in Panama City and wanted to do the Panama Canal & opted for the full transit vs. partial and are glad we did. The online reservation process and communication from the tour operator were excellent. We were notified of the hotel pickup time the day prior (the time varies somewhat depending on the time scheduled to enter the locks). The checkin and boarding were very efficient and the overall customer service exceeded our expectations. Breakfast was provided (fruit & small breakfast sandwiches) along with coffee. The partial transit folks disembark in Gamboa, about half-way through the canal. The partial-transit covers the most interesting part of the canal transit; after the partial folks leave the boat (over half) a boxed lunch is severed (a not too bad pasta salad & a cookie) and snacks later in the afternoon. Sodas, coffee and water are all included, beer was $3. The tour guide providing commentary was knowledgable and I thought added to the overall experience. Final disembarkation is a marina on the Caribbean Ocean side of the isthmus with about an hour long bus ride back to Panama City. The price was fair given the charges for transiting the canal, and for the roughly 12-hour tour. I would recommend the tour for anyone wanting to transit the canal, without wanting to take a 14-days cruise to do it. Note that the 2nd half of the canal transit is basically a boat ride on Gatun Lake (not much is lost in the partial vs. fill transit tour) but it was interesting observing the shipping operations.
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Date of experience: July 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
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Howie wrote a review May 2022
New York City, New York7 contributions5 helpful votes
These people were extremely courteous, and super friendly. It was just a good feeling to visit a place where you are given the at most respect. It was just good to see people who appreciated people who wanted to experience their culture. Amazing experience overall
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This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
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