The Darien Gap

joydrive-darien-gap

The missing link in The Pan American Highway is called The Darien Gap , the road terminates in Panama at Yaviza, ending in dense, mountainous jungle populated by poachers, gun runners and guerrillas – needless to say we won’t be driving through. We’ve spent the better part of a week figuring out how to ship our car to South America. Initially we had planned on shipping from Panama to Ecuador, but after talking to the people in the know we decided to ship by container to Cartagena, Colombia.

So after a mountain of paperwork we packed up wee Marlin, stuffed him into a forty foot container and left our little car on the port in Colon. We took the Panama Canal Railway back to Panama City which follows the Canal route and offers some spectacular views of both the Canal and the area that was flooded to create it.

Now we have a five day sail through the San Blas Islands to South America.


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  1. Stefan’s avatar

    An interesting part of the world – for sure! So there’s literally no safe way through to S. America? I must say, sailing that region of the world does sound like fun. What an adventure!

  2. Kristen’s avatar

    Was it hard to part with Marlin?

    That sailing sounds amazing. Enjoy!

  3. tom’s avatar

    We just arrived in Cartagena, having had to extend our sail ing time due do some rough weather – my romantic notions of sailing round the wolrd have been put into persperctive a little. Yes it was a little scary leaving little Marlin locked in that huge Canal port, I hope we see him again.

  4. tom’s avatar

    hey Stefan – the sailing was really fun, but the trade winds favor sailing in the opposite direction so after we left the San Blas Islands it was fairly hard going for a couple of days. We´ll get a post up on the sail once we´ve found our bearings and our car!

  5. nomadicmatt’s avatar

    you can drive through like they did in the more the art of backpacking….just make sure u can cite ur communist guerrillas!

  6. Päivi & Santeri’s avatar

    Here is another way to cross the Darien Gap: Crossing the Darién Gap (2013).

    That documentary was filmed on March.

    Happy travels!