I was sorry to leave Boquete, but since most of our tour group had already dispersed I was starting to feel lonely and ready to head home.

The road to the David airport was new and smooth, and had a nice view of the countryside:

Highway to David

The flight to Panama City only took about 35 minutes. It was a shock to leave the airport and be back in the heat and congestion of the city again. I stayed overnight at the Riande Hotel and Casino, then caught my flight to Miami the next morning.

The hotels in Panama City do not allow you to keep the air conditioning and lights on while you are out. Instead you have to plug in your room key to turn everything on when you enter the room, then everything shuts off when you pull out your key to leave the room. I am sure that is the only practical way to keep the A/C costs down in such a warm climate.

I liked my room at the Riande Hotel in Panama City:

Riande room

The lobby was interesting too:

Riande lobby

The next morning after breakfast and a few final cups of that fabulous Panama coffee, I took the shuttle to the airport.

Airport screening was more intense than anything I’d ever gone through. We had the usual luggage screening entering the terminal, then another screening and a thorough pat down before getting on the plane. Getting off in Miami we went through the people scanners, and luggage was scanned again before the flight back to Raleigh. There were drug sniffing dogs in both Panama City and Miami airports.

I did enjoy the art I saw in Miami while walking to the scheduled airport gate, finding it had changed, and retracing my steps back across the entire terminal. All of the circular shapes in the art piece below are designed with sea creature sculptures.

Airport fish

My last vacation blog post is coming up to wrap up my impressions of Panama.