7 Days Across Panama on a Motorcycle – Part 6

This is a sixth installment in a series about a motorcycle trip that my friend and I took in January of 2016. Here is Part 1.


Day 6

Today is our last day before we begin the return ride to Panama City so we decided to take it easy again and do some sightseeing. Bocas del Toro has a lot of small islands and the best way to explore is by doing a boat tour. All you have to do is walk down to the water taxi area and you’ll find chalkboards advertising different tours. Or you can have a hotel or a hostel make the reservations.

We ended up booking a whole day tour for $35 per person. They have a big cooler on the boat so we went to a market and got some drinks for later. In the beginning there were just a couple of people in the boat but the captain kept running the boat from pier to pier until all 12 seats were filled. Even though we spent 30 minutes running around like this there wasn’t much to complain about because the views were great:MotoPanama52

After departing the island of Colon and going wide open for a while the captain stopped the boat to show us a school of dolphins he spotted nearby:MotoPanama53 MotoPanama54

Then the captain told everyone to hold on and gunned the engines which scared the dolphins away… or so we thought. What he was doing was trying to get them to follow us and sure enough dolphins began chasing the boat jumping the waves. It was hard to take a good picture with all the bouncing around but if you look hard enough you’ll see a dolphin in the wake:MotoPanama55

Soon we reached an island that looked like something straight out of a movie. Even though it wasn’t very sunny the water looked unmistakably Caribbean. Nothing but palm trees all around. We were told that you can walk around the whole island in an hour. It was definitely a nice walk.MotoPanama56 MotoPanama58 MotoPanama57

It was time for lunch so we got back in a boat and went to another island that had a seafood restaurant. A lobster and rice dish that I ordered was not cheap at $18 but considering the location I’d say it was OK. A couple of young kids on the same tour decided to go LB and brought their own spread with canned food, bread and fresh tomatoes. Definitely a good way to save cash and the route I’d take most of the time. But today was all about R&R and shutting off the FI calculator… Easier said than done though!

For the second half of the trip we were taken to snorkel first and then to see starfish in just 3 feet of water. We also spotted sloths lounging in mangroves. Here is a tour guide hassling one:MotoPanama59

All in all I think it was a nice way to spend a day on the water.

Once we got back to Colon it was time to get ready for our last night on the island.MotoPanama60

The plan was to take it easy since we were going to catch a 6AM water taxi back to Almirante. But of course “the best laid plans of mice and men often go awry” and this turned out to be a crazy night. Sometime around midnight we knew that getting up won’t be easy in the morning but that didn’t stop us from ordering another round.