Puerto Quetzal question

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#1
Baldwinsville, NY
161 Posts
Joined Aug 2002
We are going on the Feb. 19th Norwegian Jewel 14 day Panama Canal sailing, and Puerto Quetzal is the only place where none of the ships excursions appealed to us. Is there a beach nearby or a resort on a beach where we could spend a few hours? We have excursions booked for all the other ports.
#2
10,464 Posts
Joined May 2009
We've just returned from the Jewel's 16-night Panama Canal cruise, which also had a port call in Puerto Quetzal. I can't help you about a beach. We took the ship's transportation to Antigua. It's the original Spanish capital, and was interesting to visit.
#3
104 Posts
Joined Jul 2016
Firstly I want to thank you for returning to post a review.
We leave in April, and sadly there is little posting re ports on a Panama full transit.

Corinto Nicaruaga ... do we bother with a tour to Leon? Our port day is a Sunday, so thinking most spots will be closed? The cruise line has gauranteed if they offer the tour, it will be open except for markets and shops
Does the cruise line use large buses for this port? Or is it all small vans?

Did you stop at Puerto Quetzal Guatemala? If so, suggestions.... Colima/Colma??

Did you talk to any cruisers who did the Volcano tour?
...... thankful for any tips or tricks you can offer.
#4
10,464 Posts
Joined May 2009
Originally posted by 3Shelaghs
Firstly I want to thank you for returning to post a review.
We leave in April, and sadly there is little posting re ports on a Panama full transit.

Corinto Nicaruaga ... do we bother with a tour to Leon? Our port day is a Sunday, so thinking most spots will be closed? The cruise line has gauranteed if they offer the tour, it will be open except for markets and shops
Does the cruise line use large buses for this port? Or is it all small vans?

Did you stop at Puerto Quetzal Guatemala? If so, suggestions.... Colima/Colma??

Did you talk to any cruisers who did the Volcano tour?
...... thankful for any tips or tricks you can offer.
In Corinto, if you don't go to Leon, I'm not sure what else you would do. I took the ship's tour there to see the Cathedral. It turned out be exceedingly rushed, although I am glad to have seen the amazing roof. I don't know whether it being a Sunday for you would be an issue. The Cathedral was actually closed midday when we where there; I knew this would be the case from their web site, and questioned NCL about this before I booked. They called the tour operator and was told the operator has a deal with the Cathedral to be able to enter during that time. This turned out to be true. (The cruise line used large buses for this excursion.)

Frankly, Corinto is a skippable port.

I answered your question about Puerto Quetzal in my post above.

We spoke with two people who did a volcano hike in Nicaragua (through the ship). They found the trail-less descent to be quite unnerving.
#5
104 Posts
Joined Jul 2016
Thanks for your reply... feeling quite guilty for the current choice of having an "enjoy the ship day" in Corinto. It's Easter Sunday, and think the outcome of a long drive to and fro, will be a bit of a bust? Cruise line has said, "if a tour is offered, it will still be a go, but to expect the citizens to be enjoying their Easter with their families too". I suspect Easter church services will curtail a roof visit even more? Or maybe a visit on Easter will enrich the experiance?
Never "not got off in a port", and hate to start now, but.......?????
Also hate to miss that roof experiance........
#6
10,464 Posts
Joined May 2009
Originally posted by 3Shelaghs
Thanks for your reply... feeling quite guilty for the current choice of having an "enjoy the ship day" in Corinto. It's Easter Sunday, and think the outcome of a long drive to and fro, will be a bit of a bust? Cruise line has said, "if a tour is offered, it will still be a go, but to expect the citizens to be enjoying their Easter with their families too". I suspect Easter church services will curtail a roof visit even more? Or maybe a visit on Easter will enrich the experiance?
Never "not got off in a port", and hate to start now, but.......?????
Also hate to miss that roof experiance........
You're kind of in a tough spot. I'm not big on staying on board in a port I've never been to either. That said, it is a bit of a drive to León, and it's unclear how Easter Sunday would affect things. It sounds like you are considering an NCL tour. If so, what does the description on NCL's web site say? In my case, it promised an inside visit to the Cathedral and a visit to the roof; as I noted above, I called NCL (about the Cathedral being closed midday when we would be there) and they actually called the tour operator and got confirmation that we'd be able to go inside the Cathedral and visit the roof. I would expect the tour operator in your case to know to what extent Easter Sunday would affect what you can see in León.

Not exactly sure what I'd do in your situation if you are not able to get any more info. I suspect I'd probably go to León; when would I be in Nicaragua again? (And as you said, you might see some interesting things on Easter Sunday.)





(León Cathedral, photos by turtles06)
#7
104 Posts
Joined Jul 2016
Decided to get off ship, and did the bus to Leon. Glad I did, but as others have said, this port should be struck off list.
The drive went by quicker than expected, it was an interesting drive. It was a hot dirty town. Locals did not bother us. Did the church/roof and market.