After our trip to the Panama Canal at the Miraflores Locks, my new Canadian friends and I hopped in a taxi for the Amador Causeway (with a brief stop at the Albrook bus station so our taxi driver could help them purchase tickets to Bocas del Toro). Our original plan was to walk down the causeway and possibly back. Our driver told us it was too far to walk and suggested a driving tour of the area. We compromised with a drop off at the far island and a walk back. The one-way walk was not that long, and it was quite enjoyable save for the intense sunshine and minimal shade.
Since we opted for beer instead of food at the Canal, we decided that a late lunch was our first priority. It took a while for us to find a suitable restaurant. There were a few strip malls along the Amador Causeway with plenty of restaurants, but none appealed to us at first. We were hoping for a larger crowd than just ourselves.
After walking awhile and enjoying the views of Panama City, we came across Mi Ranchito, an outdoor restaurant with high thatched canopy overlooking the bay and a public pool. As I later discovered, Mi Ranchito is one of the recommended restaurants in my Frommer’s guidebook mostly for the view and atmosphere. The menu looked great, but I was a little exhausted from walking in the sun and opted for some lighter, more refreshing fare. We split an appetizer of empanadas, which wasn’t like the ones I can get in New Jersey; the outer shell was made of plantain rather than dough. To keep myself going through the heat, I ordered ceviche de pescado (unfortunately, they didn’t have the mixed seafood option at that time). The ceviche was much better and cheaper than what I had the previous day in Casco Viejo. Along with my papaya shake, I felt re-energized and prepared for the rest of the walk along the causeway.
As we finished lunched, we walked back up the causeway–the breeze from the bay and the slight shade of the palm trees softened the midday sun. We watched ships in the distance heading to and from the Bridge of the Americas.
We also came across the Biomuseo–the biodiversity museum slated to open next year. We noticed it on the drive down, but now had our chance for a closer look from outside the construction zone. This is at least the third Frank Gehry design I’ve encountered on my travels (the others being the Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles and his new building on Spruce Street near the Brooklyn Bridge (there are other buildings I’ve come across that I didn’t realize were Gehry’s design)). Unlike most of his other designs, the Biomuseo blends color with his metallic exterior.
In all, the walk took us about an hour (not including lunch). We took a short taxi ride back to Casco Viejo and relaxed at the bed & breakfast until dinner.