Event Price 

San José * Manuel Antonio National Park * Curú National Wildlife Refuge * Panama City

We invite you to cruise from the Atlantic to the Pacific and experience one of the greatest accomplishments of the modern age—the ingenious Panamá Canal. Unmatched in drama and engineering prowess, this 50-mile passage through the narrow isthmus of Panamá continues to astonish the most veteran traveler. During a specially arranged and narrated daylight transit, discover firsthand the mighty locks that raise and lower oceangoing vessels 85 feet, employing the force of gravity to accomplish in mere hours what would have previously taken a three-week circumnavigation of South America. Cruise through the new Agua Clara locks, part of the canal’s monumental expansion in 2016 which doubled its capacity and enabled larger ships to transit.

This comprehensive, journey-of-a-lifetime showcases Earth’s most pristine ecosystems in the rainforests, islands and archipelagos of Panamá and Costa Rica at the best time of year. Visit the stunning and biodiverse Manuel Antonio National Park, where expert naturalists will lead a trail walk through an ecosystem of rare species, including the flamboyant scarlet macaw and fiery-billed aracari. Explore the heart of Panamá City’s UNESCO World Heritage-designated Casco Antiguo—the city’s old town—and tour acclaimed architect Frank Gehry’s only design in Latin America, Panamá City’s Biodiversity Museum.

Cruise aboard the exclusively chartered, Five-Star Le Champlain, featuring the extraordinary Blue Eye, the world’s first multisensory Observation Lounge. This sophisticated small ship offers only 92 Suites and Staterooms, each with a private balcony. Dock in small ports of call inaccessible to larger vessels and enjoy enriching excursions led by experienced onboard naturalists.

Event Itinerary 

Day 1: Depart the U.S./Arrive San José, Costa Rica
Day 2: San José/Puerto Caldera/Embark Le Dumont-d’Urville
Day 3: Curú National Wildlife Refuge/Isla Tortuga
Day 4: Quepos for Manuel Antonio National Park
Day 5: Isla Cébaco, Panama
Day 6: Panama City
Day 7: Panama Canal Transit/Colón
Day 8: San Blas Islands
Day 9: Colón/Disembark ship/Panama City/Return to the U.S. or Canada

Type of activity 
Activity Level 

Easy/Moderate - Contact tour operator for full activity level details. 


Professors Mona Domosh and Francis Magilligan

Mona Domosh is Professor of Geography and holds the Joan P. and Edward J. Foley Jr. 1933 Professorship at Dartmouth College. She is also the Director of the Society of Fellows postdoctoral program at Dartmouth. Prof. Domosh is a cultural-historical geographer with research interests in understanding the relationships between different gendered, racialized, and classed formations and urban design, form and function.  She has explored those relationships primarily in regard to late 19th and early 20th century large American cities, focusing on untangling such cultural distinctions as consumption/production public/private, and masculine/feminine.  Her recent research focuses on the networks of institutions and individuals who created and maintained what became known as the Black Belt of Chicago – the South Side neighborhood that was home to Chicago’s Black community – in the first decades of the 20th century.  She teaches classes in urban and cultural geography and is interested in expanding her analyses by traveling and interrogating different cities around the world. 

Francis J. Magilligan is the Frank J. Reagan '09 Chair of Policy Studies, Professor of Geography, and Adjunct Professor of Earth Sciences at Dartmouth College. Prof. Magilligan’s teaching and research interests focus primarily on the biophysical and social aspects of watershed management.  In particular, his research addresses stream channel and watershed response to environmental change – whether that change is generated by natural (e.g. climate change) or anthropogenic (e.g. agriculture, grazing, or logging) causes. He has worked on the geomorphic impacts of catastrophic floods on the Upper Mississippi River and on glacial outburst floods in Iceland. At a more local level, he has been analyzed the geomorphic impacts of Hurricane Irene that ravaged eastern Vermont in late summer 2011. This work has expanded to evaluate Vermont’s ambitious flood buyout program to better minimize flood risk and promote greater watershed resilience.  Currently he is focused on the links between channel processes and riparian ecology, especially the role of dams –and their subsequent removal – on aquatic and floodplain ecological integrity. Prof. Magilligan received a Guggenheim Award to expand this work to examine the intersection of science and politics of river restoration in the United States.  He has conducted international field work in the Peruvian Atacama Desert investigating the long-term evolution of El Niño floods and the regional relationship between climate change and cultural history. Outside of Dartmouth, he has worked with local communities and numerous NGOs in their attempts to restore river integrity at multiple scales.

Shared Program 
Operator Name 
Thomas P. Gohagan & Co.