Panama seems to be about two things, the Canal and the Banks these days. But its said that the Canal would have not been possible to build without the Panama Railway, which played a major role in the construction of the canal. The railway was built by the Americans and it is estimated that 5-10,000 people died during the construction. The construction was wrapped in the 1850’s and became one of the most profitable railroad companies in the world. A ticket would cost $25.00 one way for the 74 km in 1855. This is the cost of a ticket today if you take the joyride from Colon to Panama City. The railway is operated by a US/Panama joint venture these days and beside the tourist train it’s used commercially also to haul containers across the continent. The ride is one hour and snacks/coffee is served to the passengers. It was a calming ride after my mind was blew by the paperwork-aduana-heat-stink combination for 5 hours in the port of Manzanillo in the process of shipping the van to Ecuador.

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The train station in Colon.

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The 1938 vintage dome wagon.

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