I got up a bit late this morning, after 8. We went to get breakfast (free breakfast here), but there was next to nothing to choose from. All the bread was gone, they had cereal and warm boxed milk that was just sitting in the cupboard. Pretty pa pathetic. We decided we'd just get breakfast somewhere on our way to the sightseeing bus.
We also needed to book the room for another night, but trying to find anyone that works here is a challenge. Anybody who works here just looks like another backpacker and the hostel doesn't really have a front desk, so you have no idea who to talk to.
After sitting around waiting for dad for 10 minutes, I saw a guy walking from a private area by the side of the hostel way to the back, behind the little guest house at the back of the property. He was carrying a tire tube. He looked like a backpacker, but he was going to areas where guests wouldn't normally go, so I walked over to him and asked him if he worked here. He said he did, in some strange accent. He didn't speak much English to me, but he seemed to understand everything I said to him. I told him we'd like to pay for another night, and he said OK. He then disappeared into the back with his tire tube for 5 minutes and I didn't quite know what to do. Then he finally came back out (tire tube still in hand), checked the paper notebook at the desk (no computerized booking system here!) and said something I didn't understand. But I got the impression that the room we had was booked for tonight. He then walked off to another similar room and asked them something, then came back and took me to another small 4 bed dorm room, and said we could stay there, giving me the impression that we would be the only two in that room.
We got the key, moved our bags and then walked to the mall where the bus starts and bought a day pass. Fortunately the bus was there when we arrived so didn't have to wait. We hopped on. Our plan was to get off at the canal stop, then the old city stop.
We arrived at the canal and got off, bought our ticket for the canal museum and viewing area. The museum discussing the history was quite interesting and well done. The viewing platform at the top provided great views of the canal and the ships moving through it (very slowly moving through it).
We spent about an hour there, then back down to the bus stop, perfect timing, the bus just arrived, so we got on.
The bus went to a few other places, including a high end marina on an island connected to the mainland via a causeway.
Finally we arrived at the old city. We got off, it was about 1, and I was hungry. The first thing we saw was a small brewery that brewed their own beer. We went in for lunch and a half litre of good, draught beer. I had an awesome sausage on a bun.
We discussed moving hostels, as both of us are not really happy with the place we're in. We had originally planned to do a walking tour of the old city, but the we decided to look for the Magnolia Inn, a place very highly recommended on TripAdvisor.
We found it down a very quiet street and booked it for the rest of it nights here in Panama. It's more expensive, $88/night, but it's a super nice place, in a restored colonial building.
We went back to the bus stop and waited for the bus to take us back to the mall where it started. We had planned on taking the other bus that does a different tour of the city, which the ticket is good for, so we waited for the bus, about 30 minutes and got on, only to find out that they just finished the last tour of the day for that bus. It was about 4pm now.
Back to the hostel.
We hung around the hostel for a while, then around 6:30 went to a place called Wing Zone, for chicken wings. Dad had chicken fingers, I had wings, which were quite delicious.
We went back to the hostel, I grabbed my good camera and headed back down to the waterfront to see more of it and take pictures with my good camera. And I saw something I fully didn't expect to see in Panama. One area along the waterfront has a lot of stray cats living along the waterfront wall. A head popped up behind the wall, and I saw it and thought to myself, "That didn't look like a cat. It looked like a...naw, it couldn't have been." It popped it's head up again. Sure enough, a racoon! There's a racoon living right along all of the stray cats along the waterfront.
The waterfront is really nice, extends a long way, and is sooo busy with locals jogging, working out; there were some basketball courts along there as well, busy with people playing basketball or volleyball or soccer in them.
I headed back to the hostel around 9:30, then read and to bed a bit later.