I didn't visit any cities other than Panamá City, so I don't have many pictures of people. Panamá City is just like any other big city, lots of traffic. The Old Town of Panamá City is very interesting, most of my pictures of Panamá City are from there.
The Panamá Canal is of course a main attraction in Panamá, it was interesting to watch ships being moved through the Miraflores locks.
All pictures are © Dr. Günther Eichhorn, unless otherwise noted.
From the Panamá City entry in Wikipedia:
Panamá City was founded on August 15, 1519 and it lasted one hundred and fifty-two years. In January 1671, the Governor Juan Perez de Guzman had it set on fire, before the attack and looting by the pirate Henry Morgan. In 1672, Antonio Fernández de Córdoba initiated the construction of a new city, which was then founded on January 21, 1673. This city was built on a peninsula completely isolated by the sea and a defensive system of walls. Today this place preserves the first institutions and buildings of the modern city of Panamá. It is known as Casco Viejo (Spanish for Old Town)
The Sacred Heart Cathedral (Spanish: Catedral Basílica Santa Maria la Antigua de Panamá) is a Catholic church located in the old town of Panamá City in Panamá. It was consecrated in 1796, although construction work began in 1688, 108 years earlier. The cathedral is the episcopal see of the Archdiocese of Panamá.
The Metropolitan Cathedral of Panamá is heir to the Cathedral erected by Pope Adrian VI in the great house of the Cacique Cémaco, when the Spaniards faced and offered found a population dedicated to Santa Maria la Antigua in 1510. In 1513 dictates the bula why Antigua is raised to the rank of dioceses and church to the rank of Cathedral, its first bishop was Fray Juan de Quevedo.
After the fire caused to escape the pirate Henry Morgan in 1671, the city was transferred to the current Old Town of the city of Panamá in 1673 and with this move the adjournment of a new cathedral, whose construction takes 108 years (1688-1796).
Archaeological Site of Panamá Viejo and Historic District of Panamá is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
From the Panamá Canal entry in Wikipedia:
The Panamá Canal (Spanish: Canal de Panamá) is an artificial 82 km (51 miles) waterway in Panamá that connects the Atlantic Ocean with the Pacific Ocean. The canal cuts across the Isthmus of Panamá and is a conduit for maritime trade. Canal locks are at each end to lift ships up to Gatun Lake, an artificial lake created to reduce the amount of excavation work required for the canal, 26 m (85 ft) above sea level, and then lower the ships at the other end. The original locks are 34 m (112 ft) wide. A third, wider lane of locks was constructed between September 2007 and May 2016. The new locks are 55 m (180 ft) wide. The expanded canal began commercial operation on June 26, 2016. The new locks allow transit of larger, post-Panamax ships, capable of handling more cargo.
France began work on the canal in 1881, but stopped due to engineering problems and a high worker mortality rate. The United States took over the project in 1904 and opened the canal on August 15, 1914. One of the largest and most difficult engineering projects ever undertaken, the Panamá Canal shortcut greatly reduced the time for ships to travel between the Atlantic and Pacific oceans, enabling them to avoid the lengthy, hazardous Cape Horn route around the southernmost tip of South America via the Drake Passage or Strait of Magellan.
Colombia, France, and later the United States controlled the territory surrounding the canal during construction. The US continued to control the canal and surrounding Panamá Canal Zone until the 1977 Torrijos–Carter Treaties provided for handover to Panamá. After a period of joint American–Panamanian control, in 1999, the canal was taken over by the Panamanian government. It is now managed and operated by the government-owned Panamá Canal Authority.
Annual traffic has risen from about 1,000 ships in 1914, when the canal opened, to 14,702 vessels in 2008, for a total of 333.7 million Panamá Canal/Universal Measurement System (PC/UMS) tons. By 2012, more than 815,000 vessels had passed through the canal. It takes 11.38 hours to pass through the Panamá Canal. The American Society of Civil Engineers has ranked the Panamá Canal one of the seven wonders of the modern world.
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