The Panama Canal Today

The Panama Canal has not changed for a hundred years i.e. since its construction was completed by the USA in 1914.  This waterway across the Isthmus of Panama, connects the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans and greatly shortened the journey time our ancestors made to NZ or Australia as ships could bypass the long journey around the tip of South America. The 50 mile long passage taking 8-10 hours, is based on a system of three Locks (Gatun, Pedro Miguel, Miraflores) which raises ships 85 feet above sea level. It was the largest engineering project of its time and over 25,000 men died during its construction due to rampant tropical diseases, heat and challenging terrain. Currently the canal is being expanded to allow larger than Panamax vessels to transit the canal and work should be completed in 2016.  See also RootsRoutes History section.

 Transit through Canal from Panama Miraflores Locks - November 2015

Transit through Canal from Panama Miraflores Locks - November 2015