National Geographic Quest
After a great experience crossing the Panama Canal and learning about some of the islands in the Panama Bay, we crossed the Azuero Peninsula and stopped in Coiba. The name Coiba comes from indigenous leader Quiebo. When the Spanish first explored the area, they called it Cobaya and Coyba. Known as the jewelry of Panama and the Pacific Ocean, Coiba Island is part of a very important marine corridor shared with Costa Rica, Colombia and the Galapagos Islands. About 80% of the national park is rainforest, and 20% is a beach with white sand. We stopped in this important place and offered two activities to guests: a walk around the ranger station to spot wildlife or snorkeling in Cocos Islet. As we walked, we heard howler monkeys in the distance and saw colorful birds. We spotted crimson-backed tanagers and yellow-faced grassquits. Some guests saw scorpions. After the walk, we returned to the ship. Some guests decided to snorkel in the crystal waters. They spotted many kinds of tropical fish including parrotfish, surgeonfish, razz fish, trumpetfish, guinea pufferfish and bicolored parrotfish. They also observed green sea turtles swimming slowly along the reef. We had the opportunity to kayak and paddleboard in the morning and afternoon. We gathered onboard by midafternoon to begin our departure to Costa Rica.