The Panama Canal is the man-made waterway through the Isthmus of Panama that connects the Atlantic Ocean and the Pacific Ocean. The canal is 51 miles long with locks at each end to lift ships up to Gatun Lake, which is also man-made. The elevation change is roughly 85 feet, and the original channel is 110 feet wide. This unique feature has become very popular among tourists who enjoy filming the trip through the locks from the deck of the cruise ship. Due to this popularity, Carnival has a number of ships that offer regular cruises through the Panama Canal.
The Carnival Miracle
The Miracle departs Tampa, Florida for a thirteen-day cruise through the Panama Canal which also stops in Cartagena, Puerto Quetzal and Cabo San Lucas before docking at the Port of Long Beach in Los Angeles. This trip departs on Sunday and docks on Saturday with pricing starting at around $1,000 including tax and port fees. The base price for this cruise includes most of the onboard entertainment, use of the kid’s club facilities and basic drinks. Also included are the main dining room seating and access to the buffet. The reverse trip departing from San Diego visits Huatulco, Puerto Quetzal, Puntarenas, Cartagena and then docking in Miami. These cruises sail on Saturday and dock on Friday with a base price of around $1,500 including taxes and port fees. The Miracle also offers an extended cruise of seventeen days which launches from Miami and stops in Santa Marta, Cartagena, Limon, Panama, Puntarenas, Puerto Quetzal, Cabo San Lucas and then on to San Francisco to dock. These cruises begin at about $2,000 with fees and taxes and go up to around $3,500 for a suite.
The Carnival Legend
The Legend departs from San Pedro in Los Angeles and visits Cabo San Lucas, Puerto Quetzal, Puntarenas, Cartagena, Santa Marta, Grand Cayman and then docks in Tampa. This fifteen-day cruise departs on Saturdays and pricing begins at around $1,500 including port fees and taxes. Upgraded accommodations include ocean view, balcony, and suite cabins if you are interested in a larger or more luxurious setting.
Each of these cruises includes passing through the Panama Canal. This 51-mile waterway is a manmade channel that can require as much as 20 hours to make the trip through this masterpiece considered to be one of the seven wonders of the modern world. Passengers enjoy viewing the passage from the deck to see not only the canal itself but the other vessels which are making the trip through as well. Nothing but a mega cruise ship will offer the views and the experience that will allow you to cross the Panama Canal off of your bucket list.