The Panama Relocation Tour starts on my third travel day! Here is our patient and knowledgeable tour leader Jackie:

Jackie picture

Panama has many revenue streams coming in, but the Panama Canal is the most important to its economy. Canal renovations are almost complete so it will be able to handle larger ships soon.

I had only one day to explore in Panama City before the tour started. I spent it in Casco Viejo, so this picture as we drove by was the closest I got to the canal.

Panama Canal

There were many newly built highways and constant road construction along our bus route across Panama. There was a lot of new housing construction to meet the demands of the increasing middle class.

Panama City houses

Our first stop was Coronado, an upscale beach community, to look at some properties there. We were able to see a lovely condo unit for sale and check out the smashing view of the beach from the pool area on the building roof. This is one of my favorite pictures from the trip:

Coronado Beach

Nice ocean breezes plus pretty views in all directions.

Coronado Beach strip

Our group listening to info about the Coronado and Gorgona areas:

Coronado Beach condo roof

Next was some pretty mountain scenery as the bus climbed up to a rainforest in El Valle, which is less developed than the Coronado area. The entire El Valle area is rural and beautiful.

The white smoky area in the photo below is probably a controlled burn.

Low mountain scenery

Once we got there, those who wanted to hike were given heavy walking sticks to help out on a short but challenging hike. We all made it safely through the rain forest.

El Valle rainforest

We continued on to stay overnight at a beautiful Sheraton resort in Bijao:

Sheraton front window

We got to see a lovely wedding near the pool area:

Sheraton wedding

What a beautiful ocean view:

Sheraton beach

We ate dinner at the resort’s fabulous Mediterranean buffet restaurant. Later there were fireworks and live entertainment.

The entire area was lovely but I would never get used to the constant heat and humidity. It’s a good thing we were just starting the tour and had cooler areas coming up.