Bill and Margaret Cosgrove
April 30, 2017
When planning our visit to Panama, we wanted a travel consultant who was both knowledgeable and flexible. My wife and I had either visited or lived on 5 continents. I had lived and worked in the Panama Canal Zone 50 years ago. So, we are the kind of travelers that, with a little knowledge, can easily be a significant annoyance for a travel consultant.
Scott Ludlum is exactly what we were looking for. Today’s travel professionals seem to have simplified their service to just making bookings – something that most of us can do for ourselves (and often with better results). Although Scotts’ expertise must include this fundamental part of travel, his expertise also includes knowledge about the many peripheral details that are far more important to making travel a worthwhile and special experience.
Our 17-day visit to Panama was customized with the help of Panama Travel Consultants (Scott Ludlum) and each day went just as planned. We didn’t do it all, but we packed a tremendous amount of fun into a couple of weeks. A stay at the Gamboa Rainforest Resort provided access to Lake Gatun and the Soberania National Park. We visited the Smithsonian’s Marine Laboratory at Galeta Point on the Caribbean shore and toured Manzanillo International Terminal – a container port that sits on what was once beautiful Coco Solo. We enjoyed the relaxing Yandup Lodge in the San Blas archipelago, El Valle in the Anton Valley, Chitré on the Azuero Peninsula, historic Portobelo, a full canal passage, and the ruins of Panama Viejo. One of the highlights of the trip was our stay at Finca Lerida just outside Boquete.
Almost every day we had a private guide or transfer driver. They were always on time and extremely helpful and informative. These Panamanians were truly the key element to what made our visit to Panama special.
Thanks, Scott, for all of your help. It was a pleasure to meet you there in Panama!
Margaret & Bill
Asheville, North Carolina
April 15, 2017
Just wanted to thank you for managing our vacation ! We had a wonderful trip, no complaints ! loved Panama and all the tours. The trip couldn’t have been better ! We’d love to visit Panama again sometime and explore more. I see that you organize tours in other in the neighborhood and in Latin America, and I’m sure we will be contacting you to plan trips to other countries!
We really loved the people at the Tour Operator and our wonderful guide Oliver whose enthusiasm was unparalleled :)! You had told us that, and indeed, that trip to the Embera tribe was a highlight!
Thank you again from all of us !
January 9, 2017
The trip was thoroughly enjoyable and we appreciate the attention to detail that you invested. We have done a lot of traveling both for work and pleasure and your agenda and attention to detail ranks among the best we have seen and we would recommend you without hesitation.
We were very pleased with all of our hotels but would have to say the Gamboa Rainforest Resort was our favorite. The Westin was also delightful but offered a more sanitized filtered Panama experience. The Rainforest resort offered places to go hike, birds and animals to see even around the hotel and overall was perfect for what we were looking for. We also enjoyed all of the tours and would not change a thing on any of them. One unexpected bonus for me personally was the opportunity to practice my rudimentary Spanish that I have been working on for about a year.
Again, thanks for a great trip to Panama!
January 2, 2017
Count us in as another very satisfied customer with Scott and Panama Travel Consultants. It was just the Mrs. and myself and Scott did a great job with our 8 day trip to Panama. He utilizes Gamboa Tours and we were very pleased with them. The last 5 days we had our own driver/guide who was very willing to make changes from day to day due to our interests and needs. His words were: “This is your tour, I want you to be happy.” Can’t ask for better! As for Scott, frequent emails where always responded to quickly and personal phone calls, especially the one a few days before we left were most appreciated. Yo can’t go wrong utilizing Scott and his company. We had a most memorable time in Panama! (As posted to TripAdvisor: https://www.tripadvisor.com/ShowTopic-g294479-i1193-k5900873-Panama_Travel_Consultants_any_advice-Panama.html)
December 14, 2016
This fall I took the extraordinary step of using a Custom Travel Specialist, Panama Travel Consultants, to plan a trip for me. This is unusual for me . I have traveled extensively and have led to more than 90 countries around the world. So it was an amazing adventure, though the trip was quite intense. Logistics for this trip were exceptional. Tour representatives were there at every venue from the time we arrived at the airport in Lima, Peru to departing Las Paz, Bolivia. There was someone there to meet us for every transfer, hotel drop off and pick up and every tour. Even guiding and making sure we had all our documents for crossing the land border into Bolivia. Cultural and/or site-seeing tours were arraigned for every location. We found all the drivers and tour guides to be very friendly, knowledgeable and professional. I saw things on this trip I didn’t even know existed. We packed a lot into a two week trip and the tour company took care of all the details. I found the package to be reasonably priced and will certainly consider doing another trip with Scott at Panama Travel Consultants.
Pat and Ray Putnam
November 8th, 2016
Just wanted to let you know that Panama exceeded our expectations.
We loved it all. The tours were set up in exactly the correct way. Gamboa Tours were excellent. The driver we had – Miguel Alsola, was a gem. He was always on time, gave us wonderful information and took really good care of us.
We are safely settled in our hotel in San Jose and anxiously watching election results!
Thanks for all your work on our behalf.
Pat and Ray Putnam
October 4, 2016
I recently returned from a great trip to the Panama Canal Area. Scott did a fantastic job planning the trip for me. We had had a chance to see the Canal from many different perspectives including atop an observation tower during the Aerial Tram Tour, a boat trip through the Locks, a ride on the Panama Railway, and from land at Miraflores Locks Visitors Center.
We also had the chance to travel out into the Panamanian countryside to see the real Panama in a small town called Anton Valley. It was a completely different world therer and I am so glad we had the chance to see it. And one of the best parts of that day trip is we did an exciting Zip Line Tour which was the first time for both of us!
Even though it was the rainy season the weather was perfect. And our guide, Christopher, was the best guide I have ever had. After the first day we called to make sure he would be with us every day. All of the Panamanian people we met were so friendly and helpful.
There is no way we would have seen and done as much if Scott had not planned the trip so well. We met other people who couldn’t believe how much we did in a week. They told us how much trouble they were having trying to figure out how to plan everything they wanted to do and see in Panama. We were so glad to have Scott do that for us!
I am so proud that I got to see so much of Panama in just a week. I am planning more trips with Scott since he knows how to customize the perfect vacation!
Tom and Tommye Sigerfoos
August 5, 2016
Tom and I cannot thank you enough for first of all, listening to our needs and desires, your careful planning and for exceeding our expectations on our travels throughout Panama! We had such an amazing time at each location and every tour and excursion was fabulous! Each accommodation was top notch with wonderful restaurants. Each guide treated us like royalty always arriving on time and making sure all of our needs were met. Your knowledge and expertise of this region really shined through and enabled us to relax and have fun since you took care of the hard part!
We look forward to our next adventure with PTC!
Tom & Tommye Sigerfoos
July 9, 2016
My husband and I recently returned from a fantastic trip to Costa Rica. We were looking for a quick getaway trip over a long weekend and Scott Ludlum, at Panama Travel Consultants, suggested the beautiful, luscious land of Costa Rica for an action packed vacation.
Scott was able to work with our budget to deliver a first class trip. He suggested wonderful hotels and ideas to explore the surroundings from volcano expedition and hiking to river rafting and hot springs. He coordinated transportation and, for the first time, all we had to do was show up! We wanted to add a tour to our itinerary mid trip – and all we needed to do was send Scott a quick email, and all was taken care off the very next day! Fast, efficient, and best of all we didn’t have to worry about anything.
Overall, a great package where everything was pre-organized and took the stress out of trying to relax! We will absolutely use Panama Travel Consultants in the future for our vacations.
July 7, 2016
We had a great time in Panama and we really enjoyed the experience. The weather was surprisingly good. I was upset when I lost the watch so I am very glad that the Tour Operator found it and that you will return it to us soon. Louis, our guide, was excellent.
Thanks for making this trip so memorable!
Angella Hearn and Charles Hack
June 20, 2016
We found our trip to Cuba more than met our expectations and we were very pleased with the organization and planning of the trip. Our guide, a charming and amusing young man, was extremely helpful and informative. We very much enjoyed exploring old Havana and some of the other areas close to Havana – Miramar, where we stayed, as well as Verdado.
The art and music aspects of the tour were memorable, including a visit to Ernest Hemingway’s house, an evening with the Buena Vista Social Club and the Parisien Cabaret at the Hotel Nacional. We also very much enjoyed our cross-island trip to Cienfuegos and Trinidad da Cuba, which gave us an opportunity to see the beautifully lush, green countryside; as well at the gorgeous Caribbean beach at Trinidad.
May 23, 2016
I wanted to let you know that Jack and I had a wonderful time in Costa Rica. The customized itinerary that you put together for us was perfect. All of our guides were excellent – very knowledgeable and extremely friendly. As you know we were a little reluctant to do the Waterfall Rappel. But while it was a bit challenging, we were so glad we were able to have such an incredible experience.
We also loved the wildlife boat tour and the bird watching tour and nature hike in Monteverde Cloud Forest. We saw all kinds of birds and wildlife.
Now we are really looking forward to seeing what you come up with for our vacation to New Zealand next year. It will be tough to beat such a great trip to Costa Rica!
Talk to you soon!
April 2, 2016
I wanted to drop you a line and let you know how much I enjoyed the Panama trip you set up for my group of friends. From the moment we arrived at the airport till we were dropped off for our flight home, everything went like clockwork. Gamboa was wonderful, both the resort and the company. Their drivers were great. The atmosphere at the resort was luxurious and the setting lush and tropical. Our 2 nights at the Sheraton Beach Resort were relaxing, and the Panama City hotel overlooking the Panama Canal couldn’t have been nicer.
Thank you for arranging our bird watching tour. Benny, our guide was fantastic! The day and a half we spent with him was the best birding experience I have ever had. We saw 147 different species of birds! Also, monkeys, sloths, crocodiles and butterflies galore. The partial transit of the Panama Canal you arranged was great as well. And the flights you booked for us were perfect.
My friends and I could not have had a better time. You designed our trip to our criteria and hit it right on! We had a wonderful time and it was all because of the work you put into setting it up for us. I will not hesitate recommending you to anyone I know who wants to explore the wonders of Panama.
March 21, 2016
We loved the entire trip. Guides were all good, but could be a little better with their English. But also very polite and accommodating. Our only complaint is we could have enjoyed more time, another day or two. Can’t see how we could have chosen a better trip advisor than you.
Thanks for everything.
Gene and Andrea.
March 17, 2016
Our trip was great everything was on time. Very impressed with Gamboa mostly with roberto. Both lodging places were great. Ken saw every view and place about the canal.
Thanks for a good job.
March 1, 2016
Please forgive the delay in getting back in touch with you. I do want to tell you how wonderful my guided tour of Panama was. Gamboa Tours did an excellent job. They were always on time, took us to wonderful places, and spoke good English. You planned a great itinerary. The resorts you chose turned out to be perfect. New Year’s Eve was spectacular. We had a lot of fun on the golf courses. I did think the Radison Hotel was the better of the 2 courses.
Everyone should experience the Panama Canal. I also loved seeing the home of an indigenous tribe. I even got to dance with them. All in all, was a great experience. I would consider coming back if the opportunity presents itself.
Very best regards,
Vito DiMucci and Betty Williams
March 1, 2016
Good Morning Scott,
As mentioned yesterday, we thoroughly enjoyed the tour. The up close and personal tour of the Panama Canal and locks afforded through your services was excellent. We had a previous pass through the locks on the Crystal Symphony cruise ship. The cruise ship experience does not come close to what you see, learn and experience with the full transit tour, the train tour, and private tour that you afforded on our tour.
Vito A. DIMUCCI
February 7, 2016
As promised, a quote for you:
“Many thanks to Scott at Panama Travel Consultants for the help in organizing a wonderful trip in Panama. All of the arrangements and accommodations were flawless. The drivers and guides were marvelous beyond expectations. All with the peace of mind, knowing that
Panama Travel Consultants were only a phone call away.”
February 2, 2016
Hello, Scott –
I hope you will use all or part of this note as a testimonial for the outstanding service and tour I was provided by Panama Travel Consultants. As you might recall from our meeting over a year ago at the L.A. Travel Show, I was looking for a provider of a very custom (and short) trip to and through the Panama Canal. No eco-tours, no flora nor fauna, but a narrow focus on the railroad, canal and its infrastructure.
Boy, did you deliver!
Your Panama affiliate provided personable, punctual, and engaging drivers each of the days I was there. Being the only passenger in a new, clean and comfortable car was ideal. On Day One, Miguel was an encyclopedia of interesting facts – geared to my primary interest that day: the railroad and the Titan crane (“Herman the German”) in Gamboa. Miguel took my lead in little side trips and returned me to near my hotel for a most unexpected surprise: the Frank Gehry-designed BioMuseo. I toured the stunning museum then walked home along the causeway at sunset. Perfect!
On the canal, I doubted passengers on the very large cruise ships were getting the feeling of intimacy my group was getting, considering we had only three decks and there were only about 250 of us. This day was the whole reason for my visit (as you well know), and it could not have been better. I read David McCullough’s “The Path Between the Seas” in preparation for my canal experience. Two things were very obvious: it was excellent preparation, and many other passengers had also read it, so we shared common ground.
Day Three’s driver, Teo, was superlative. He very quickly understood my interest in architecture and geared his city tour around this. From enjoying the Pacific and city views from high atop Trump Tower, to the UNESCO World Heritage Old Town area, to the stunning architecture all over downtown, we had a ball. Teo shared lots of local lore about buildings and areas we visited.
So, there you have it. And I haven’t even touched on the first-class treatment of COPA Airlines, the effortless shuttle from/to the airport, or the warm welcome and send-off, or your Travel Planner. This trip was a Bucket List item for me and it was exemplary. Thank you for providing such a stellar experience.
January 23, 2016
The Panama Travel Consultants arranged a private trip to Panama for my wife and myself Jan12-17, 2016.. Our trip was a great success due to Scott Ludlum”s knowledge of the area and his attention to detail. Everything was well planned and the itinerary he developed was outstanding. We couldn’t have seen and enjoyed more in the time we spent in Panama. Scott arranged for a guide and driver during our trip and it couldn’t have been easier for us. The driver was always on time, spoke excellent English, and provided a wealth of information about the various places we visited.
I highly recommend the Panama Travel Consultants for your travel
Martin and Jennie Ray
We are home safe and sound – Jim & Susanne are in NH. We are sun kissed and most satisfied with an exciting vacation. Perfect weather, good accommodations, excellent food and delightful people through-out the trip.
The old engineers were agog with the Canal – ladies liked the wild life, restaurants, swim pools & touring.
We all agreed that Panama had a safe and pleasant feel to it that quickly melted that early tension one always get when visiting a foreign country.
We wanted to adopt our driver, Oliver, whom we requested and had for all rides. He truly went well beyond duty and gave us hours of extra time and information – just a charming fellow.
The Gamboa Rainforest Resort exceeded expectations – service was great, rooms really lovely, breakfasts super and dinner excellent if you
stick with the Buffet. The pool and surroundings just perfect.
The Country Inn was showing its maturity but our rooms, a little tight,
had fabulous balconies and view of the Canal. Breakfasts not the best.
We thank you for your flexible and super managed trip. There were no snags and all was as promised.
Your good self and you trip will get our full recommendation.
Martin & Jennifer Ray
January 12, 2016
My wife and I, having a long interest in but little knowledge of Panama, decided to take a 9 day vacation there. Surfing the net in search of travel details, we came across Panama Travel Consultants. We contacted them, told Scott vaguely what we wanted to see: The Canal, Panama City, tropical forests, mountains and beaches. A few days later Scott sent us an excellent proposed itinerary. We accepted. It hit the sights we wanted and the price was right. We completed our 9 day Panama vacation a couple of days before Christmas. It was excellent! As expected the country was interesting, the people friendly, and our guides excellent in every way. For anyone thinking of visiting central American we recommend Panama. It has everything Costa Rica has plus a very interesting big ditch. For anyone thinking of visiting Panama we recommend (very strongly) Panama Travel Consultants. You will be pleased.
Very best wishes,
San Jose, CA
December 31, 2015
Happy New Year! Thank you for providing the photos of the Christmas party at the Membrillo community. I’m glad my donation helped for buying presents for the children in this worthy cause.
I also want to thank for for arranging a perfect trip to Panama for me and my daughter. All of our interests were met with the amazing itinerary that you arranged for us. This whole trip was amazing considering the wide variety of places we visited, and we saw the canal and the locks from the Atlantic to the Pacific by car, train and boat.
Oliver Martinez was our guide and driver for the whole time we were in country. He was always on time, professional, courteous, and knowledgeable. We never missed a connection, and his friendly personality enhanced the whole experience.
I want to thank you, Scott, for understanding our interests and arranging a truly amazing and unforgettable trip.
December 17, 2015
Sorry for the delayed reply. The trip was incredible. Thank you for all of the work in putting this together for us. I really enjoyed the sequence of things that particularly in regards to the canal. The Miraflores visitors center to start the trip ending with a partial transit (with everything in between) was really a nice way to experience Panama. Oliver from Gamboa Tours was really knowledgeable and open to questions and discussing things beyond a typical tour–he was exceptional!
Sorry we missed you in Gamboa. I hope we can discuss future trips very soon!!
Thanks again, and I hope this finds you well,
Ann Patman and Tom Neufeld
December 12, 2015
Good Morning Scott,
First we want to thank you for picking us up at the airport. It was a delight to meet you and we really enjoyed our discussion, as well as the mojitos.
The trip to Cuba was fantastic. The guides were very knowledgeable and answered any questions quite openly. The pace of the trip was leisurely with enough time for independent wandering at every stop. Both hotels were very comfortable. The resort, however, had a problem with water, so we took cold showers for two days-not a major inconvenience. Only once did an adjustment have to be made to the schedule when heavy rain precluded a visit to the organic farm. However a visit to the revolutionary museum was arranged instead and was most fascinating.
Cuba is a beautiful country and well worth a visit. The people were very friendly and shared stories about their lives. I would heartly recommend the tour operator that you worked with since they provided a first class service.
Thank you for arranging such a special visit for us.
Ann and Tom
December 8, 2015
Scott Ludlum, President of Panama Travel Consultants, made all the arrangements for three couples to travel to Guatemala and Panama for a week each in the fall of 2015. He proposed several itineraries, listened to our suggestions, made changes and responded immediately when one couple delayed their flight by a day. The tour guides were knowledgeable, personable and again willing to adapt to our interests.
Thanks to Scott and his organization we had a wonderful trip.
Terry and Ray Walls
November 15, 2015
We had a fantastic time in Panama for 8 days in October 2015. Scott of Panama Consultants set up the hotels and tours for us. He listened to what we expressed as things we wanted to do and not do and picked the best for us. We had the same Panamanian driver throughout our trip. Guillermo was very knowledgeable about history and a pleasure to travel with. He was always on time and organized.
We recommend Scott and his company for travel.
Terry and Ray Walls
Kathie and Neil Michels
October 27, 2015
We took a trip to Panama that Scott Ludlum set up for us, and we couldn’t have been more delighted with every aspect of the trip.
The accommodations that he arranged for us were perfectly located with excellent service and clean, comfortable rooms. The tours that he set up were informative (the Panama Canal and the Smithsonian Research Station) and beautiful (the Railway ride and the nature tours on the canal and in the mountains). And what tied it all together was the drivers that were always there at our hotels and at the end of every excursion to get us where we needed to be next. These drivers were very knowledge and informative and added to our appreciation of this wonderful country.
I would highly recommend Scott and his Panama Travel Consultants to anyone considering traveling to this part of the world.
Patty and Dave Thorne
September 7, 2015
FABULOUS TRIP!!!!!!! Really enjoyed our first Panamanian experience. I’ll get back to you with more details later (after we unpack and recover a bit.)
Jacob Ortega is an excellent bird guide — we saw over 150 species with him. Lovely human being — warm, friendly and gracious.
Guillermo (our other driver) was also wonderful. Very knowledgeable; prompt and accommodating.
I do not have enough superlatives to express our appreciation to both men. Please convey our thanks to the Tour Operator for providing these marvelous guides!
Tired and happy to be back in the USA.
Patty and Dave Thorne
August, 20, 2015
On behalf of my husband and myself I want to thank you for planning a wonderful a trip to Panama. I appreciated your quick responses to emails and telephone calls. You listened to our interests and put together a custom itinerary that we thoroughly enjoyed. Through both telephone calls and written materials we were well prepared for the trip. Although Panama is in Latin American, every tour and guide was on time and in most cases early. In addition all the guides spoke excellent English and were knowledgeable about topography, history and animal life. We particularly enjoyed Boquete. The Fincha Dracula orchid nursery and the Finca Lerida coffee plantation and bird watching were delightful and highlights of our trip. You sweated the details so we didn’t have to. I highly recommend Panama Travel Consultants. Thanks again.
Janet and Art Wong
August 16, 2015
I would like to offer comments regarding the trip that Scott Ludlum and Panama Travel consultants arranged for our party of four to Argentina and Chile in Feb, 2015. Scott worked with us closely to establish an itinerary emphasizing Patagonia. It was only the second trip to Argentina he had arranged, but he really found excellent partners and activities. The activities included were varied and right on target for our interests. We kayaked with a private guide in Bariloche, visited several very different estancias, and saw the magnificence of Patagonia from land and sea. The guides were great, everyone showed up on time, and everything went smoothly as silk. Scott had a long phone conversation with us before departure about all the details, and was very interested in feedback about how everything went. We did have a couple of suggestions. Out group would very highly recommend this agency.
Janet and Art Wong, San Francisco
August 3, 2015
First, I want to state that the tour itinerary was very well organized and presented to us in great detail. Second, the execution by the local operators in Panama was nearly perfect. We did not have any problems along the way. The drivers were always on time for pick up to and from the various excursions, as planned.
Of the three hotels we stayed – the Gamboa Rainforest Resort at Gamboa, the Hotel Valle Escondido in Boquete and the Hotel Country Inn & Suites in Panama City – the Hotel Valle Escondido was undoubtedly the best. It is a very charming hotel in a beautiful location.
Most of the excursions and attractions planned for our tour were pleasant and interesting. In the Gamboa area enjoyed mostly the ride on Gatun Lake and the ride on top of the forest canopy to the observation tower from were we could see the ships moving toward the canal.
The second part of our trip was in the Boquete area. The Boquete area is really beautiful with it’s mountains, valleys and rivers. The visits to coffee plantations and processing plants was also very interesting. We learned quite a bit about coffee and, of course, we brought home some of the best Panama coffee.
The third leg of our trip was Panama city and the canal. We greatly enjoyed our visit to Old Panama city and Casco Viejo. The visit to the Panama Canal was awesome. Following the visit to the visitor center we had the actual experience to transit to a significant portion of the canal which was truly a fantastic experience. All along, we learned about the history and construction of the great wonder, over 100 years ago.
Last, but not least, we also remember fondly our visit to the Embera indian village along the Chagres river. It was an interesting little adventure riding on their canoe on a rainy day.
Thank you for organizing the tour for us.
Roy and Alice Hughes
July 31, 2015
We are home! Alice is doing well. Our next step is a Dr. here for rehab. MAN! All of ya’ll were awesome! The care given before the accident was awesome but then the true spirit of you and the Gamboa Tours group became even more evident with an extreme incident. We certainly had the best of care at all times. Our main driver “Christopher” was a God send. His ability with English, knowledge, and just his whole demeanor made for much more than just a tour guide, he has become our friend. He made our trip before and after all it could be. More details when we meet.
The awesome thing about all this is it actually has given her peace of mind and wants to return to Panama and see Boquete and even investigate living there. At first I figured it was all over for Panama. The modern hospital and the extraordinary care we received convinced her the third world has gone first world. We believe their care was superior to care here. They actually enjoy their job and very good at it. The friendliness of the Panamanians was and still is so amazing. No matter who or where, they all would acknowledge us with bueno, hola, chow or some form of hello. Sure not so here.
Roy and Alice
Fred and Marion Sotcher
July 28, 2015
Thank you for a wonderful trip. We had a great time. The guides were very helpful and provided lots of information as we traveled along. They were always on time, in-fact early. The resorts were outstanding. The guide for the bird watching tour was outstanding as was our guide in Panama city area. It seem like there was a lot of down time, but then there was a lot of things to see and do in the areas.
Your detailed itinerary was very useful and well written. One suggestion is that you should make it clear that you are providing a personal guide for most of the trip, that was a real plus!
Over all the trip was great and very interesting. One of our best!
Thanks for arranging it for us.
Fred and Marion Sotcher
Ivor and Barbara Defty
June 28, 2015
We had a great time in Panama, thank you. Miguel, our guide and driver throughout, was always early and was able to give us information on each trip and he was very friendly and thoughtful.
Everything went to plan except being able to go to the new locks – we got turned away on the approach road. We think there had just been an accident there and they were barring all visitors. And the zip wire was at a different location at La Granja and not the one further north. Still very enjoyable.
We had only one hour of rain which was really lucky as it is the rainy season. Overall the trip was amazing so thanks for all your diligent work to make sure we had a fabulous time.
With best wishes,
Ivor and Barbara
June 22, 2015
We have used Panama Travel Consultants to help plan and coordinate trips to Panama and to Puerto Rico. They also put together a compelling itinerary for Brazil which we may do in the future. In our dealings with the company, we have found them to be professional and courteous, always delivering the things we have requested and agreed to. They thoroughly screen the partners and tour operators they use to deliver services on the ground. Their prices for private tours have been competitive with what we could arrange on our own as well as what we’ve seen offered elsewhere for larger groups. We have found them to be exemplary in their willingness to custom design the tour for their client, both in terms of accommodations and activities. We expect to utilize them again for future travel planning.
Tom and Jane Heineke
June 11, 2015
The trip you prepared for Jane and I to Costa Rica and Panama this year was amazing! The meticulous planning and attention to detail by your company made our trip enjoyable and worry free. In Panama, we enjoyed the broad diversity of the country, from the ruins in Panama City to the very comfortable Gamboa Resort. We especially liked the visit to the Embera Indian village and the trip through the Panama Canal. The people who handled the tour details there were always on-time, professional and courteous!
The Coast Rica portion of the trip was outstanding! We spent five wonderful days at Lapa Rios, an eco-resort on the Osa Peninsula in the southeastern part of the country. The guides there were very competent and knowledgeable, the food excellent, the staff most considerate, attending to our every need. The on-site meals were, without exception, gourmet, and provided by friendly, competent wait staff and excellent cooks. The accommodations were luxurious. We stayed in a very comfortable bungalow that offered total privacy. We saw a large number of wildlife species, including over 80 species of birds we had never before encountered. I would highly recommend this Lapa Rios trip to anyone who is interested in observing tropical wildlife under luxurious conditions.
Tom and Jane Heineke
Diane and Dave Hicks
June 4, 2015
We recently traveled to Panama and used Panama Travel Consultants for the land portion of the trip. The trip went just as planned, our guides were always on time (sometimes early), our hotels and resorts were fine, and someone was always available if a problem or question presented itself. We really liked our guides, particularly Chris, who was enthusiastic and entertaining. Our favorite place to stay was the Gamboa Rainforest Resort as we liked the location and peaceful area that the property offers. We really liked that Panama Travel Consultants will work with travelers to set up an individualized itinerary.
Diane and Dave Hicks
May 27, 2015
Just wanted to check in to let you know that our trip went great. We were so surprised by Mexico City and its level of sophistication. The city is really clean and we felt safe most of the time and we walked all over the place too. My Spanish really came in handy as most people really do not speak it outside of the hotels. It really was fun!
Everything that you set up for us really was great. It made the entire trip for us! The airport transfers were perfect and all the tour pickups were on time. The Pyramids were just amazing and that was a real highlight. However, the National Museum of Anthropology was just unbelievable and we spent hours there. We actually walked all the way back to the hotel from it. Quite a fun adventure. The Mexican ballet was just gorgeous. We really enjoyed that as well. Taxco was an incredible town and we enjoyed walking around there too.
Our guide, Marco, the first few days was really, really good. He was fun and engaging so all the tours had just that extra excitement to them. His English was great too as he spent time in the US.
I cannot thank you enough for such a great time. We really enjoyed it!!
Prue & Ken Holton
May 12, 2015
We had a wonderful time on our trip to Panama Canal. All the arrangements worked out fine and the guides were very courteous and helpful. We especially enjoyed our hotel where we could watch the boats go majestically by on their way either to or from the Canal. All in all, it was a special trip both for us as well as our grandson. Thanks for your part in helping it go so smoothly.
Prue & Ken Holton
Chris Grenning and Jim Dickson
April 1, 2015
Thank you for all your help in arranging our recent trip to Panama. Everything went smoothly and we had a marvelous time discovering this wonderful country. We’d like to thank those people from Gamboa Tours who were so friendly, kind and helpful in making our visit so enjoyable.
All these people were wonderful to be with and made our trip such a success. We would like to thank each of them and to all the people at Gamboa Tours who made the bookings for our trip. It was perfect and we much appreciate the efforts of all who participated in making this visit to Panama such a lovely experience.
Thank you too, Scott, for your informative and professional help in organizing this.
Chris Grenning and Jim Dickson
April 28, 2015
I am very pleased to tell you that all of the arrangements you made on our behalf went amazingly well and not so much as a minor glitch!! I was pretty apprehensive when I realized that you, the realtors and the tour companies were all doing a piece of the package, but was delighted at how well coordinated everything was and how well all of the pieces and parts worked together. You are working with top-notch people that are very knowledgeable and skilled at what they do.
The housing market is another story that we would be happy to tell you about when you have some time to give us a call. The bottom line (and very short version) is, don’t believe half of what you read in International Living Magazine. Lesson learned…..but the tours, the sight-seeing and the things we learned about buying real estate in Panama were well worth the trip. We learned all of the things you can only learn by being there.
April 10, 2015
Good to hear from you. I intended on emailing to thank you for your input & giving us such an amazing experience in Panama. Panama was absolutely wonderful and we learnt so much from all the tours. And when it was time to relax we enjoyed just watching the ship traffic from the balcony of the Country Inn.
I was very surprised to see that Panama is such a progressive country and there is much going on there with lots of construction – I would be interested to return to note the results & the changes. We were blown away with the canal concept and found that exceptionally interesting. This tour was one of the highlights as was the partial canal experience.
All the tours taken we were happy with – the guides were always on time helpful and courteous as was the hotel staff. Met some very nice people. Two happy tourists and thank you for your input I appreciate your advice and especially the way in which you have kept in touch.
Many thanks Scott.
Diane and Janet
March 28, 2015
Hey Scott, Made it back to Miami. Sitting in airport waiting on DFW flight. Wanted to let you know we had a fantastic time. Gamboa Tours took excellent care of us and we felt very comfortable throughout the trip. Enjoyed each and every day. Canal was awesome and we learned a tremendous amount about the history of everything Panama. Thanks some much for arranging everything.
Diane & Janet
Ilene and Mark Mattison-Shupnick
March 27, 2015
Thanks Scott, We loved the trip that you put together for us. Every part of it was perfect. All the travel connections and transfers/pickups were on time. Someone was always waiting for us with smiles when we arrived at a new destination. Patagonia was stunning. The hotels were perfect and the adventures that we chose were lots of fun. We loved the kayaking and horseback riding as well as hiking. You were so easy to work with and readily available to answer any and all of our questions as we began the planning process.
Thanks so much for a wonderful trip!
Ilene and Mark Mattison-Shupnick – Petaluma, California
Britt and Lee Bell
March 23, 2015
Thanks, Scott: We have returned from our trip to the Panama Canal and can say we had an excellent tour. Gamboa Tours was wonderful in their service–clean, prompt, personable and knowledgeable. We enjoyed the historical background as well as the actual tours of the locks and the transit through the canal. Thank you for your arrangements–they were perfect.
Britt and Lee Bell
March 7, 2015
We’re back from Panama and I wanted to write and say we had a great trip. Everything worked out very well and we had great weather. We were amazed with the promptness of the Gamboa guides. Everyone was on time and most were early! The guides all spoke decent English; the drivers didn’t but Vivian speaks Spanish so she was able to talk with them easily.
I also want to provide a bit of feedback on the places we went. We loved the Panama City tour and the Embera tour was worth doing as well. We liked Country Inn and Suites; it’s a good location.
Akwadup lodge was fine – the people were friendly and the trips interesting. One downside that we all agreed on – the food was terrible.
The area around Boquete is beautiful. We liked Valle Escondido although I think it is overpriced. It is very nice to be in a beautiful place but be able to walk into town. The hike was great as was the zip line.
The Red Frog beaches and villas are beautiful. They upgraded us to our own villa, which was wonderful as it would have been a little odd to share the space. It is obviously still a work in progress and will be better in the future. We talked with the general manager who said they are trying to make the roads less bumpy and have a train go around between the villas.
I have mixed feelings about the last night at the Meridien. It is beautiful and was nice to be in a different part of town but we had little time to enjoy it. Thanks for helping us plan a great trip.
Roshan and Jimmy Bharucha
March 6, 2015
Thank you for making all the arrangements for our private tour of Panama City and Gamboa. All the transfers and tour operators were on time and the guides were knowledgeable and spoke English. The highlight of our trip was the full transit passage thru the Panama Canal, which was truly impressive.
We also thank you for obtaining permission to see the Presidential Palace. While touring the palace with the guide we were pleasantly surprised when the President came out of his office and shook hands with all the visitors.
All in all, we had a very enjoyable trip.
Roshan and Jimmy
Bob and Joanne K.
March 2, 2015
We booked a customized 11-day Panama vacation with Panama Travel Consultants. Scott Ludlum helped us plan a wonderful trip. He called us a number of times to discuss the possible options for our trip. It was a pleasure to work with Scott. He worked with Gamboa Tours Panama to make all our arrangements – city tour, Embera Indigenous Community visit, El Valle Day Trip, four great days of birding, and a partial Panama Canal Transit tour. Technically, everything went perfectly. His recommended accommodations were excellent and centrally located. Tour guides were personable, knowledgeable, and spoke English fluently. We told him that we were serious birders and wanted a good guide for our four days of birding. Scott found us one of the best birding guides we have ever used. He even made arrangements for hotels to serve us breakfast at 5:30 AM for our early birding days! We wouldn’t hesitate to use Scott again to plan another trip. We highly recommend Scott Ludlum and Panama Travel Consultants. (As posted on Trip Advisor: http://www.tripadvisor.com/ShowTopic-g294479-i1193-k5900873-Panama_Travel_Consultants_any_advice-Panama.html)
Bob and Joanne K.
March 2, 2015
My daughter and I just returned from Panama on a six day trip planned by Panama Travel Consultants and everything was as close to perfect as we could hope for. We spent half of the trip at the Country Inn and Suites Panama Canal and half at the Gamboa Rainforest Resort. The hotels were very different in location and style but both were very nice and met our needs completely. Everything we wanted to do was included in the package Scott arranged. We were told during our pre trip conference call with Scott that the tour guides, drivers etc who were from Gamboa Tours were on “Panama time” and we should not be concerned if they were a bit late. That was the only thing about the entire trip that was not 100% accurate. Every member of the tour group was precisely on time and exactly where we were told they would be. The guides were very friendly and all spoke English very well. It was a great trip that we will long remember and we cannot recommend Scott and Panama Travel Consultants enough. (As posted on Trip Advisor: http://www.tripadvisor.com/ShowTopic-g294479-i1193-k5900873-Panama_Travel_Consultants_any_advice-Panama.html)
February 5, 2015
The trip was fabulous! We had a great time and everything went exactly as planned. Our drivers showed up early each day, so that was wonderful. I’m not sure if I could say what the best part was; there were so many. I loved the canal and was greatly disappointed we didn’t get the full tour. We were tired after a partial tour, but still wanted more. All the accommodations were good. La Paz Waterfall Gardens was the best place to end our trip. Having hummingbirds perched on my fingers to eat was so cool!
I did want you to know that we appreciated all you did and the arrangements were perfect. Thank you again for a fantastic trip.
January 29, 2015
I wanted to follow up on our phone call and tell you what an absolutely amazing trip our family had to Costa Rica and Ecuador. You did a great job of listening carefully to what our interests were and planned the perfect trip for all of us. The guides we had in Costa Rica were top notch as Sammy and Leo made a really great team. And imagine our surprise to find out that Leo is the son of the author of Birds of Costa Rica. He was so humble and went out of his way to take us off the beaten path and see the amazing sights with less crowds. All of the hotels you chose were amazing, especially the Peace Lodge and the Observatory Lodge which was like having our own private house. And with all of the great tours we did like the Zip Line across the Canyon, the White Water Rafting trip, and rappelling down the waterfall which was unbelievable, we never would have imagined that the tour to the Organic Farm would be our favorite. But the Organic Farm was fantastic and it was also the best meal we had during the entire trip.
We also really loved Ecuador and the combination of doing day tours from Quito with spending three nights at the Sacha Lodge in the Amazon was perfect. The hike in Cotopaxi National Park at such a high altitude of 16,000 feet was a challenge for Stephen and I but we somehow were able to keep up with the kids and made it to the top.
We also loved the Amazon and being at the Sacha Lodge. Just the trip to get there is an adventure when you arrive in the town of Coca, walk 45 minutes through the jungle, and then ultimately arrive at the Lodge by Canoe. There were monkeys right outside of our window and the food was fantastic.
We really appreciate everything you did to make what was truly the trip of a lifetime for us. We always felt safe, secure, and like somebody was looking after us. We can’t wait to book our next adventure with you!
January 23, 2015
My wife and I just completed a trip to Panama utilizing Panama Travel Consultants. Scott L. has excellent customer service skills, is professional, and delivers on his commitments. He listened carefully to the types of hotels and experiences we wanted, gave helpful advice, and produced a perfect itinerary. Particularly for a private tour of two, the services and price were competitive. I give this company an excellent rating! Thank you, Scott. (As posted on Trip Advisor: http://www.tripadvisor.com/ShowTopic-g294479-i1193-k5900873-Panama_Travel_Consultants_any_advice-Panama.html)
Vicki and Peter Kauth
January 16, 2015
Wow! What a trip! My husband and I had never taken an escorted tour before, but our delight began when we landed in Panama City in the pouring rain at 10 p.m. A man holding a sign with our name whisked us away to our hotel; no rental car, no unfamiliar roads and maps, no navigating rough roads in the dark!
The next morning we met our guide, Alvaro, who was a delight! He drove us from place to place in a new clean van and did a fabulous job of telling us about Panama’s history, culture, indigenous peoples and the canal. I wish my Spanish was as good as his English!
Our primary interest was seeing the Panama Canal, a bucket list item for us since 1977. And see it we did, from a small boat in Gatun Lake, from the Panama Railroad, from visitors centers and from a small ship during a daylight full transit of the canal. We were fortunate to observe construction of the new locks, and our guide at the visitors center overlooking the new Gatun locks explained the process, the operation of the new locks and current events involving construction very clearly. Between canal sightings, we traveled up the Chagres River in a dugout canoe to visit an Embera indigenous village, toured Panama City and Portobello, and visited the Valle del Anton, a community located in the caldera of an extinct volcano.
We returned home rested and happy to have experienced so much of Panama. Thanks to Scott and Alvaro for providing such an easy and extensive introduction to Panama. We’ll be back!
Vicki and Peter Kauth
January 16, 2015
I just finished a trip that they scheduled. They did a great job of tailoring the trip to our needs and hitting all the places we wanted. I loved the fact that the drivers they scheduled for us were on time and knew what they were doing. Going to a country where we didn’t speak the language was a little scary but these drivers helped us tremendously. I would use them again. (As posted on Trip Advisor: http://www.tripadvisor.com/ShowTopic-g294479-i1193-k5900873-Panama_Travel_Consultants_any_advice-Panama.html)
January 10, 2015
Scott served as teacher, planner and guide in the orchestration of my recent trip to Buenos Aires, Mendoza and Tierra del Fuego. He stands by his clients from the time they leave home until their return. Scott is especially strong at listening to his clients and converting what he hears into stunning experiences and wonderful memories.
PLK – Retired US Technology Executive
January 6, 2015
WOW! I cannot rave enough about the amazing attention that Scott gave to our trip. I have never used a travel agent or consultant and after our experience, I will definitely use his services again. When I called Scott and told him my thoughts on what I’d like to see, what we’d like to do and the ages and number in our party I wasn’t sure how we’d get it all done. In reality our trip needed to be longer than I originally thought it should be and I am so very thankful to Scott for guiding me along in the planning process. We went for 9 glorious days, did everything that we wanted to do, and even found time to rest. He has really done his homework and teams up with only the best guides, lodging facilities, restaurants and services all the while making sure that we stayed in our budget. I wanted a super special trip for my husband for a big birthday and we really got so much more than I ever thought. Whether it was a city tour, a hike in the rain forest, a trip to an indigenous tribe, zip lining, waking up in the Gamboa Rainforest, a visit to a coffee plantation, we had guides that shared the rich history of Panama with us and prepared us for the finale – the trip down the Panama Canal. By the time we got there we had heard so many beautiful stories and were able to read about so much of the history that we truly had an appreciation for all that has gone into that beautiful wonder of the world. My husband’s great grandpa worked on the Panama Canal so for us it was absolutely perfect!!! I would be happy to share more of my experience in working with Panama Travel Consultants with anyone who is considering using Scott’s services. We had an amazing trip of a lifetime, traveling with our teens and 20 something and I wouldn’t have changed a thing!
I am excited to hear about the travel services that are now offered to other places and hoping to take another amazing trip, to a different venue, in 2015. (As posted on Trip Advisor: http://www.tripadvisor.com/ShowTopic-g294479-i1193-k5900873-Panama_Travel_Consultants_any_advice-Panama.html)
December 30, 2014
We just returned from a trip to Panama that was arranged by Panama Travel Consultants. We had a wonderful time! We spent three days at Gamboa Rainforest Resort and went on several tours. The guides were very knowledgeable and helpful. We took a dug-out canoe to an Embera village that was fascinating. Our guide, Alvaro Montenegro was superb. He told us all sorts of information that we didn’t even think to ask about. We went zip-lining in the Antun Valley which was exciting and then took the full passage through the Canal. Every step of the trip was well designed and we enjoyed every moment. Scott took all our “wishes” and made a trip for us that met all of them. I wouldn’t use any other company because they couldn’t possibly beat perfection! (As posted on Trip Advisor: http://www.tripadvisor.com/ShowTopic-g294479-i1193-k5900873-Panama_Travel_Consultants_any_advice-Panama.html)
December 26, 2014
Scott, everything about our trip went perfectly! Our guide, Roberto, was very knowledgeable, kind, caring, proficient in the English language…I can’t say enough good about him! The tours were wonderful and we all had a wonderful time. Our hotel was very nice and maybe the best thing was the view from our balcony. We enjoyed the beautiful pool every day.
Again, thank you for setting up our trip. It is a trip we will never forget and have many happy memories to think of.
December 23, 2014
My boyfriend and I just got back from a 9 Day trip planned by Panama Travel Consultants. We were very pleased with our trip which consisted of 3 nights at the Gamboa Rainforest Resort, 3 nights at Hotel Valle Escondido in Boquete and the last 2 nights were at the Amador Country Inn and Suites. Our package included tours which were approximately 1/2 day morning tours with the afternoon free, breakfast everyday, and a few lunches. We also had an interior flight with Air Panama to Davide and back to Panama City. We had a great experience with Scott and his company, even while in Panama when some schedules got crossed and we did not have a driver to pick us up in Davide. With 15-20 minutes of my text to Scott, our driver arrived and we were on our way. This was our first time to Panama, so there is no way we could have done this much on our own. All our private drivers spoke English, and the tours were in English as well. We saw the rainforest, the city and the mountains of Panama, all in 9 days! (As posted on Trip Advisor: http://www.tripadvisor.com/ShowTopic-g294479-i1193-k5900873-Panama_Travel_Consultants_any_advice-Panama.html)
December 19, 2014
We just returned from a trip to Panama that Scott arranged for us. We were interested in learning about the cultures, experiencing the Canal and wildlife, as well as new experiences. The itinerary was perfect and met all our needs. To a person the guides were wonderful and shared both professional and personal knowledge. We loved the zip line – a first for us seniors – and certainly it gave us bragging rights. The Canal itself is truly the eighth wonder of the world and the environment in Panama is beautiful to behold. To take such a trip with no worries (we do not speak Spanish) was only possible because of Scott. We highly recommend a visit to this incredible country. (As posted on Trip Advisor: http://www.tripadvisor.com/ShowTopic-g294479-i1193-k5900873-Panama_Travel_Consultants_any_advice-Panama.html)
November 17, 2014
My wife and I just returned from a 19 day Panamanian vacation which we booked through Panama Travel Consultants. The owner, Scott L was a true professional in every sense. We explained to him where we wanted to go, what we wanted to see and the type of accommodations in which we wanted to stay. He put together a wonderfully coordinated trip including transfer drivers, multiple types of tour guides to include regular and a naturalist guide when expertise was needed. Airport pickup and transfers were perfectly coordinated as well as numerous water transfers and land tours. Hotel accommodations were exactly what we wanted and our trip was extremely successful thanks to the outstanding effort of Scott. During our entire trip we had only one small miscommunication error and he resolved it immediately. I would highly recommend and encourage anyone considering a visit to Panama to consult and use Panama Travel Consultants as your travel liaison. You will not be disappointed. (As posted on Trip Advisor: http://www.tripadvisor.com/ShowTopic-g294479-i1193-k5900873-Panama_Travel_Consultants_any_advice-Panama.html)
Jean & Ray and Renee & Dan
October 16, 2014
FANTASTIC—one word that describes our trip to Panama. Scott Ludlum was so helpful in planning our itinerary.
Even before leaving Scott spoke with the four of us and alleviated some of our concerns about the trip. Each hotel was very nice, each days activity was well planned and each day our guide was on time and very knowledgeable about
our adventure for that day. We definitely recommend Scott and Panama Travel Consultants.
Jean & Ray, Renee & Dan
Mary and Joe Cornelson
August 21, 2014
Sorry this message is so late. I just want to say THANK YOU for all your help and kind thoughtfulness while we were in Panama. Your help and concern meant so much. It is hard to find the right words. I am so grateful for all you did.
Jamal was also a great help. He was so kind and really a nice gentleman. I was so proud to have him by my side. He helped a lot. You both were an answer to my prayers. Joe is doing better, but the heart attack did a lot of damage. He is on a lot of medicine, and has had to slow down a lot.
You are a special person in my life , although I haven’t met you I feel like you and Jamal are true friends. THANK YOU for all your help. God bless you both.
Mary & Joe Barnett
July 21, 2014
What a wonderful trip! Things worked PERFECTLY! I can’t thank you enough!
I really felt pampered with those drivers (who were always super professional, and on time!)… it was a lifetime first for both of us. All accommodations were excellent; Red Frog really made me feel like a millionaire. The food everywhere was also excellent. But, the best part was the wonderful people in every city in which we stopped.. We feel that we made friends everywhere. There is a lot more to say, so……
We’ll talk soon.!
July 21, 2014
Scott: Early in the A.M. but wanted to get a note off to you. First,
thanks for setting up a grand trip. Gamboa Tours was fantastic, all the
guys who drove/guided me were first rate. They were waiting for me to
appear and were never late. It was a really stress free experience. Plse.
pass my compliment on to the firm, they are really professional.
All the tours were worthwhile and a great experience. The partial
transit of the canal the last day was really something. I think I stood
on my feet the whole way and got some great shots of the locks and ships.
Each hotel had a spectacular view—Gamboa Rain Forest, the room at The
Point on Contadora and of course the entry to the canal at Country Inn.
Couldn’t have asked for more. Spent a lot of time just gazing…
The Point is a little run down but I sort of like that. Great staff there
but I would not advise eating there—much better places a short walk up
At the airport when leaving Panama I was surprised by the ‘double
security’ routine—the usual security, then going through the same thing
again when you get to your gate. No food/bathroom facilities available
unless you want to go through a 3rd time (!!) I’d just caution tourists
to get food/go potty before they head to the gate.
Anyway, this was a stunning 8 days. Thanks again. Best, Mark.
June 25, 2014
Our trip was wonderful and Panama is amazing!! We did and saw so much which explains my exhaustion. I look forward to sharing our experiences with you!
I can not say enough good things about Janellia (we will definitely remain friends) and all the people at Gamboa tours (they were always on time…actually early, kind, and very informative).
The hotels were more than I imagined, and I would stay at each of them again! I highly recommend them for your future clients. Valle Escondido was truly heaven on earth! The Red Frog was a great adventure and the villa was so nice! And the Country Inn with that amazing view of the causeway was fantastic…I was shocked by the balcony with the view! Ruth and I decided they need to change their name because it doesn’t do them justice.
Panama has so much to offer…the people are so kind, the climate is perfect for me, and the land is so beautiful!
Thank you so much for putting together such a wonderful trip for us! I have such amazing memories and pictures to last a lifetime!
May 15, 2014
Hi Scott. How are you? I just want to say thank you for planning a wonderful trip for my 4 years old son and I to Panama. It was always a dream of mine to go back and see where I was born. You helped me plan a dream come true.
Panama is beautiful and big. The weather was perfect, the scenery was breathtaking, the beach was beautiful, and I met nice people along the way. It still feels like a dream. Until this day, I am still daydreaming about Panama. I took lots of beautiful pictures that I will treasure for the rest of my life. Hopefully you can plan another trip for me and my son in the future. In the meantime, I will cherish the memories, the pictures, and the happiness I gained from this trip. Most of all, I went with my true love…my son. Thank you so much again.
April 30, 2014
I just wanted to let you know that our trip turned out very well, especially on such short notice. The tours and drivers you worked with were great! They were incredibly punctual, friendly and interesting to talk to. There were a few glitches but nothing we couldn’t handle.
We really enjoyed the hikes, boat rides and tours. I would suggest to that you might want to recommend that tourist bring their own travel binoculars for the nature hikes. Sharing the guides’ binoculars can be inconvenient and disappointing, especially when bird watching. I would also suggest bringing a very small, light backpack for hiking to carry a water bottle, binoculars, camera etc.
The beaches around the National Park were very beautiful and very different from the beaches at The Red Frog Resort. At The Red Frog Resort we had beautiful beaches with incredibly huge waves. At the National Park the waves were much calmer but the current was still reasonable strong when snorkeling.
The whitewater rafting was great and so was the drive up to the river! The guide that took us on the wildlife hiking and driving tour near Boquete was able to attract three Resplendent Quetzals. I also really liked that the last day of our trip was a full day of sightseeing. The tour of Panama City and the Panama canal was very interesting. We were in Panama City the very day they opened the first underground metro to one of the suburbs of Panama City. We got to see and do a lot in ten days and we were really glad it was all prearranged.
Thanks for all your effort. Take care.
April 23, 2014
As experienced travelers (64 & 72) we are still very active, and wanted a trip that would provide ample hiking, birding, and comfortable places to stay outside the bustle of Panama City.
By FAR, Scott at Panama Travel Consultants provided us with the most helpful planning and execution of any trip we have done in many years. He is a hands on guy, guiding us all the way through from the very start until the day we left, and Scott always answered all our questions promptly and completely. He was always available and returned our calls or emails promptly, usually the same day.
The hotels he suggested were exactly what we were looking for , since we were most interested in birding & hiking in the Northern part of the country. The complex at Finca Lerida was outstanding! If you are looking for a gorgeous location, a helpful staff, and great trails on-site – you just have to plan to spend a few days here. Make sure to take advantage of the Coffee tour!
When we stayed in the Volcan area, we stayed at the Bambito Hotel. It looks impressive , and the people are very helpful, but it was built about 35 years ago, and needs some updating. We actually felt the Casa Grande Hotel (only a mile away, tucked into the side of a hill) would be our choice should we ever go back. We found the food there was outstanding, and the chefs and entire staff go the extra mile to make every meal an experience. If you visit there, ask for Carolina…she is on the staff, speaks excellent English, and will help with anything you may need.
All in all, the trip was fabulous, and we are so grateful that we found Scott Ludlum for our trip. All the excellent reviews on the Panama Travel Consultants site are truly deserved. If you’re going to Panama, Scott is your connection to a smooth, fabulous adventure! (As posted on Trip Advisor: http://www.tripadvisor.com/ShowTopic-g294479-i1193-k5900873-Panama_Travel_Consultants_any_advice-Panama.html)
Laurie and Gary B.
April 14, 2014
From: Laurie, Gary, and Mom
My mother who is 91 years old has always wanted to go to the Panama Canal. My wife and I decided to go with her. We spent many months searching for a “package” we could get that would satisfy our needs, but all we could find were cruises that lasted from 7 to 14 days and stopped at many ports that were of no interest to us. We were lucky to find Scott Ludlum of Panama Travel Consultants through Google, and are glad we did.
Scott worked closely with us to put together a package customized to accommodate just what we wanted to do.
We spent 5 days in Panama City with day trips to travel through the locks in the canal; a visit to the Expansion Project; a trip through the Rain Forest; a railroad trip along the canal; and a tour of the new and old city. Scott arranged all of this with, local guides, and tour companies. We experienced personalized travel throughout the visit, and were very pleased with each part of our experience.
We would gladly recommend Scott to anyone who wants someone who listens, and delivers a great traveling experience. Thank you Scott….
Laurie and Gary B.
Larry and Carol S.
April 10, 2014
We would like to thank you for planning our 10-day trip to Panama. Everything was wonderful. Our guides from Gamboa Tours were very knowledgable and their English was excellent.
Christopher, our guide for the Panama City Tour, was especially outstanding. We thoroughly enjoyed the day that we spent with him. We were also very pleased with the Hotel Country Inn and Suites Amador. Being able to sit on our patio or at the pool and watch ships travel to and from the Canal was great. The full transit of the Canal was a long day, but that was our primary reason for traveling to Panama and we were not disappointed! It was an amazing experience!
We had a great time on Contadora Island. The rooms are in need of some remodeling, but Eugene, the new owner, is working on that. Eugene is Italian and brought his chef from Italy so the food was delicious and the beach is beautiful. We had a wonderful time snorkeling and relaxing.
Our last stop was the Gamboa Rainforest Resort. We had a wonderful time there. Our trip to the Embera Indigenous Village in a dugout canoe was a real adventure. We had a great day hearing about their culture and crafts. We also purchased several beautiful baskets from them. The boat trip to Monkey Island was great fun and we have some amazing pictures of capuchin and howler monkeys.
Our trip couldn’t have been planned better!
Larry and Carol S.
April 3, 2014
It has been a few weeks since we got back from Panama City, Panama and I just wanted to take the time to tell Scott and Liz From Panama Travel Consultants what a wonderful job they did for me. I am 67 years old and this was my first time out of the country and so you can imagine the questions and concerns I had. They walked me through the whole process holding my hand and set everything up for me, from personal English driver to the best tours. THANKS FOR EVERYTHING, CAN’T WAIT TO PLAN MY NEXT VACATION WITH YOU…
Rick and Maureen B.
April 3, 2014
Thank you for the creative day tours you organized for our group while we were staying at a condominium at the Sheraton Bijao Resort complex out at the Pacific Beaches. We loved our trip to Panama and the tours were really great. As you know, the resort area is far from Panama City so we were concerned that we would not be able to find some good tours that would work well logistically. However you were able to organize some excellent tours and we loved having the opportunity to go horseback riding, go for a refreshing swim in the waterfall at the Villa for the Cerro la Vieja Eco Resort, and experience the Panamanian countryside while seeing the real Panama. Our one regret was not having more time at the waterfall! We highly recommend packing a lunch and plan on staying for a few hours to anyone making this trek. And bring your camera! Our driver spoke excellent English and was very reliable.
Panama is a beautiful country to visit and enjoyed our trip- the food was excellent everywhere we ate. We will definitely recommend you and your services to our friends and you will be our first call if we return to Panama!
Rick and Maureen B.
April 1, 2014
Being our first visit to Panama, Mike and I did not want to be part of a large tour group nor did we want to take a cruise to Panama. We were glad to find Panama Travel Consultants for our recent vacation who listened to us and arranged for everything. Scott booked us for everything we wanted to see, made a few appropriate suggestions and juggled the itinerary to optimize travel time to accomplish all. He booked us at great hotels and arranged tours through Gamboa Tours and Panama Transportation. Both met us at the appointed times and provided knowledgeable and interesting guides which spoke English very well and encouraged our numerous questions on Panama and its people. We didn’t have to worry about making travel arrangements while in Panama as all pick-ups and transfers were pre-arranged. We thought Panama Travel Consultants provided quality service at a reasonable price. We would definitely us them again.
Sue and Harris H.
March 30, 2014
We have just returned from a 7 night, 8 day Panama trip with the Canal as our primary reason for going. During our trip planning phase stumbled across Panama Travel Consultants web site and decided to give it a try. From the beginning to end we were not disappointed! Scott Ludlum, owner and our go to person, interviewed us by phone to determine what we would like to do/see. He planned a full custom itinerary, well placed and including all we had discussed plus some. He communicated regularly with us via phone and email including a phone call the day before our departure as well as a phone call upon our return. We were particularly pleased with Gamboa Tours: (to/from the airport, full canal transit (long,but worth it to see the full magnitude of the canal), Embera trip and Gamboa Rain Forest Resort) and Jamal Snape, private guide. We had a real adventure going to beautiful San Blas Islands. All arranged by Scott. He gave us information on restaurants and tipping guidelines. We did our own flight arrangements with Copa Airlines (Panamanian) giving us a non stop flight from Boston to Panama City and back. Great airline. Thanks Scott.
Sue and Harris
March 22, 2014
We recently returned from a 9 day trip to Panama with our daughter and son-in-law. The entire trip was planned and organized by Scott Ludlum of Panama Travel Consultants. He did a terrific job of recommending places to visit that would meet our interests, budget and time constraints. He is very knowledgeable about all aspects of travel in Panama.
While I had some initial concern about sending a significant cash advance to someone recommended on TripAdvisor that was not directly known to me or one of my friends, my concern was needless. Scott was very good at staying in touch throughout the planning process and then in the six months intervening between planning and the actual trip. I had complete confidence that he would handle every detail and potential problem that could arise in during the trip. Every part of our trip went according to plan.
I would very highly recommend Scott and Panama Travel Consultants to anyone considering a trip to Panama. It’s just too difficult to replicate his expertise and experience through a travel book or web site. (As posted on Trip Advisor at: http://www.tripadvisor.com/ShowTopic-g294479-i1193-k5900873-Panama_Travel_Consultants_any_advice-Panama.html)
February 28, 2014
We REALLY enjoyed our Partial Transit Tour and are soooooooo happy that we did not take the Full Transit. This was exactly long enough and we were able to experience the “locks”. We rode the Islamorada, learned a lot from our dynamic entertaining guide JC (Juan Carlos), and enjoyed delicious plentiful food for breakfast and lunch. Buses were waiting for us, return destinations well-organized and clearly marked, drivers were helpful, courteous, and competent. Our Partial Transit Tour was absolutely magnificent!
Thank you for all you did to help us make our visit to Panama most memorable.
Joe, Natalie, and Steven
February 27, 2014
We appreciate your help. All went well. The taxi driver didn’t understand the address and we were about 10 minutes late arriving. As it turned out, they were still boarding the boat and we were the last to get on. No problem. We still had to wait about 10 more minutes for the pilot to board before we could depart.
This was the perfect tour for us. Our primary goal was to see the canal and how it works. I think that we would have enjoyed the full transit and I would like to have seen the Caribbean side of the canal. However, by the time we reached the Gamboa, we were pretty tired and came to the conclusion that we had accomplished our primary goal. I don’t know how much more we would have seen by spending several more hours on the canal to see another set of locks. The food on the ship was good. The ship guide was great. He was extremely informative in both Spanish and English. We learned a lot about the operations of the canal, mechanics of the canal, the history of the canal, some Panamanian history, and future plans for the canal expansion. I would heartily recommend this tour to anyone. It was well worth the stopover on our trip.
I do regret that we did not allow more than a day and a half to tour Panama City and the surrounding area. After the canal tour bus returned to the dock, we got a taxi and attempted to tour the original old city as well as the colonial old city. There was so much to see and so little time to see it. Especially with an untrained guide.
Thank you again for your help. I really appreciate your pre-trip explanation.
Anna and Boris
February 26, 2014
We just came back form a great 10 day trip to Panama. Our trip was planned last minute and Scott worked with us to create an amazing itinerary. He planned all the little details, worked with our demands. When I asked to make changes, those were handled the same day. Scott kept in touch all through the whole planning process, called and emailed regularly. He made wonderful suggestions for day trips. Our itinerary was really unique and customized to our needs. All the tour operators that he used were professional, their cars roomy and air- conditioned. We were picked up at the airport and had no issues with getting to the hotel, never had to wait for the drivers (they always came early).
I think my favorite tour was the day trip to Anton Valley. The driver, Christopher, was very knowledgeable and flexible, offered lots of options for sightseeing and provided a lot of information about Panama. We also did a trip with Jamal Snape and he was great as well. I am so glad that we used Panama Travel Consultants for planning this trip. This was the smoothest and easiest trip ever.
Thank you Scott for your attention to detail.
Anna and Boris
February 25, 2014
Scott from travel consultants is so wonderful to work with. He planned an amazing 16 day trip which included different parts of Panama and Costa Rica. He was in touch regularly. The hotels and sights he chose which he felt would accommodate our needs and interests were on target. We felt he was always on top of things. His regular communication via email or phone made us feel like he really took an interest in our enjoying the trip. We plan to revisit Panama and Costa Rica and will have Panama Travel Consultants work out a plan for us. (As posted on Trip Advisor at: http://www.tripadvisor.com/ShowTopic-g294479-i1193-k5900873-Panama_Travel_Consultants_any_advice-Panama.html)
Loyd and Diane Koch
February 22, 2014
Wanted you to know that we had a wonderful time in Panama. Our guides were the best and were always right there to pick us up. We learned so much about the country of Panama and about it’s people from them. We are sending you a few pictures of some of the highlights of our trip. The first is one of the quetzals that we saw up close. That was so very special and our guide said he had lived in Panama his whole life and had not seen one until that day.
The other two are pictures of the zip-line that we went on. We were really flying high that day!! I really can’t tell you which of the places we went to were our favorite. We loved them all and you did such a great job of showing us different parts of Panama.
We have recommended you to several of our friends that are planning a trip to Panama in the near future. Thanks again for a trip we will not soon forget.
Loyd and Diane Koch
February 14, 2014
I recently just returned from a wonderful trip to Panama planned by Scott at Panama Travel Consultants.
It was a great experience. The companies he teamed with in Panama provided very personable, well-informed guides, transportation and the itinerary and activities Scott suggested were a perfect blend of siteseeing and fun for our group. Scott is very professional and knowledgeable about travel and anticipates problems even before you might. During the trip, I continued to get reminder emails on details that I might otherwise have forgotten. You can’t go wrong with Panama Travel Consultants! Leave the details to Scott! (As posted to Trip Advisor: http://www.tripadvisor.com/ShowTopic-g294479-i1193-k5900873-Panama_Travel_Consultants_any_advice-Panama.html)
Theresa and Cline S.
February 13, 2014
Our party of 5 just returned from a 10 day trip to Santa Catalina, Panama. We stayed at the Santa Catalina Hotel and were very comfortable there. We also spent 2 nights in Panama City at the Comfort Inn and Suites. The hotel was good and the view of the canal was spectacular. The car rental arrangements went off without a hitch, very unusual, but the best thing was Jamal Snape, our driver, of Panama Transportation. He was organized, personable and always on time. You can not go wrong using him. We enjoyed our trip and would use your services again in a heartbeat.
Theresa & Cline S.
Bryan and Blondie
January 28th 2014
My Wife and I would like to thank you for putting together a wonderful and most memorable vacation for us in Panama. We travelled from the lowlands to the highlands; through jungle and rivers; mountains and canals; we flew; we travelled by road and boat all without any problems. As you know, we had a slight delay before leaving Canada and you were able to immediately help us and put us at ease. You then made a last minute adjustment to our itinerary to ensure that we would not miss any of our original planned excursions. We appreciate that and the adjustment worked out just fine for us.
The main highlights of our trip had to be the adventures that we had in and around Boquete and of course our partial cruise on the Canal. Our stay at the Boquete Garden Inn turned out to be quite wonderful. They have lovely gardens and flowers and the most amazing collection of visiting colorful birds (a bird photographer’s dream), and the owners Jason and Susan and their managers could not do enough for us. The zip lining high above and through the rain forests with Boquete Tree Trek was amazing. Our guides were terrific, very safety conscious and most considerate.
Must say that our drivers/guides were excellent, punctual and very informative.
“Amazing” what an experience.
We had a terrific adventure holiday and we again thank you for helping to create this wonderful experience. It was also very re-assuring to know that you were always close to hand should we need any help or assistance. We would not hesitate to recommend you and your company to any would be travelers seeking adventure and memories with real support in the background. Everything worked out well with regard to travel arrangements, accommodations and best of all guides and drivers that took good care of us and really wanted us to enjoy our stay in Panama.
Thank you again and best regards to you and your family.
Bryan and Blondie
January 26th 2014
My family and I (5 of us, all adults) used Scott from Panama Travel Consultants for our trip to Panama over Christmas and New Years (2013/2014). Scott helped put the entire trip together for us based on where we wanted to go, what we wanted to see and our hotel preferences. He took care of every detail – hotels, air (internal and to/from home), transfers to/from every airport and hotel as well as local excursions. He had numerous conversations with us and adjusted the trip to meet our expectations. He also held a pre-trip meeting with us via phone to go over the itinerary and answer any questions. At the end of the trip he had a call with us to ask us for comments.
January 27th 2014
Our trip was amazing, I think more than any of us ever expected. We all decided the itinerary was about as close to perfect as possible. Just enough history, nature, relaxing and canal things, but not too much at a time. My dad actually did quite well, I think he loved everything, especially the train and the boat ride, even though that turned into a VERY long day. We all really enjoyed Jungleland also, except maybe my mom. Everyone agrees that you did a wonderful job for us, thanks again for everything.
January 19th 2014
We are using Panama Travel consultants right now, have been here since Tues and are not leaving until this Friday. We have had an incredible trip so far and Scott was amazing to work with. Definitely use his services if you can. It is very reasonable and well worth it for sure.
January 19th 2014
We used Panama Travel Consultants to plan our trip over the holidays. They were INCREDIBLE! They spent a lot of time with us to make sure they understood what we were looking for in the trip. It really paid off as our Panama experience exceeded our expectations! We were able to marry culture with adventure, relaxation and fun in the sun. We have travelled extensively with our three teenage sons — this trip was deemed “awesome” which is the highest mark they give!
More! Doing this post made me look again at my photos. WOW! I am so happy we took this trip with our sons. I know we will all never forget crossing the Panama Canal, feeding monkey’s, kayaking through the rainforest, eating ceviche in the fish market, zip lining across the jungle and more! Thank you Scott and the team at Panama Travel Consultants for making this trip so special! (As posted on Trip Advisor: http://www.tripadvisor.com/ShowTopic-g294479-i1193-k5900873-Panama_Travel_Consultants_any_advice-Panama.html)
Mike and Kathy Webster
January 12th 2014
All is great here in Panama, you should come!
Jamal was delightful and added several stops to our day. Octavio with Gamboa was great, flawless English and vast historic knowledge. Kathy said add charming!
The Hotel TRYP is perfect–quiet, new decor, great breakfast, friendly and helpful staff, good air conditioning (93 today).
We had a fabulous time on Contadora. Maria Jose was terrific and put us in her new place. Christian Dior’s guest house next to his palatial modern home. She is restoring it, will be amazing! We were high up and right on the water. Great job on this one!
The Panama Canal Full Transit was great and I really feel like I have had an intensive course in the canal! We had Taylor as our driver today, another gem! All have been great!
Leaving for Quito now, thanks for all your help!
Mike and Kathy
Emma Sue and Bob Tritt
January 9th 2014
I’ve never commented on a trip I didn’t take – but wanted to let people know of my very positive experience with Scott Ludlum at Panama Travel Consultants.
I contacted Scott in early Sept 2013 to plan a trip to Panama and Costa Rica in Jan, 2014. Scott was extremely professional and punctual. He was very accommodating as we worked through an itinerary, going back and forth with us several iterations until we felt like we had exactly what we wanted. Scott worked with us via phone and email. We had paid for the trip in full and were ready to go but then I fell and fractured a vertebra. According to the contract we had with Scott, it was at a time when we could get 1/2 of the payment back, and Scott was very prompt in returning these funds. We had TravelGuard insurance, so we will work with them to get the other 1/2 of the payment. (Always get travel insurance when you have a lot of money invested in a trip – I had a simple fall in my yard – you just never know what can happen).
Scott was a pleasure to work with and he really eased the situation after my injury. We have asked him to save our itinerary as we plan to go in Jan, 2015 and will definitely book through Scott and Panama Travel Consultants. (As posted on Trip Advisor: http://www.tripadvisor.com/ShowTopic-g294479-i1193-k5900873-Panama_Travel_Consultants_any_advice-Panama.html)
Emma Sue and Bob
January 3rd 2014
We had a great trip. Everything went very smoothly, everyone showed up when they were supposed to & were very helpful. Enjoyed the horseback riding very much. The Canal transit tour was interesting. Overall it was a great vacation. Thanks for your help. I will certainly recommend you to others. I was surprised that the overall trip was relatively inexpensive.
Dwayne and Scott
December 4th 2013
We booked 5 nights at the Gamboa Rain Forest Resort unfortunately with another company than Panama Travel Consultants. When we started emailing the resort to inquire about booking tours, it would take 5-7 days for them to even respond.. Came across another person’s comment on TripAdvisor for the Gamboa Resort and they mentioned Panama Travel Consultants as being the place to book tours in Panama. Well, we contacted them and Scott, the owner responded very quickly and we booked 5 tours with this company. First may I say, Scott is a professional and charming man, and was a pleasure to work with him for our tours. We booked Five trips with him – Canal and City Tour, Chagres River Embera Tribe Trip, Panama Jungle Trip, Pipeline Road Birding and La Tinajas Dinner/Show in Panama City. All of our tours were with private guides/drivers, which was unexpected and phenomenal and great personable guides who really cared about your tour being special and appreciative of your business.
At Gamboa Resort, we heard many people complaining that they could not even book a birding tour at the Resort as they were sold out. Thank you Scott for making our trip a wonderful experience and when we do go back to Panama, will have your company arrange EVERYTHING from airfare/lodging and tours. (As posted on tripadvisor – http://www.tripadvisor.com/ShowTopic-g294479-i1193-k5900873-Panama_Travel_Consultants_any_advice-Panama.html)
Dwayne and Scott
Nicole and Carl
October 26th, 2013
Everything with our travels into Panama went well. Marcos our fishing guide was amazing – an added plus was having the resident crocodile he named “Pepe” visiting and hanging about the boat. He enjoys fishing and it showed as everyone with a rod made a catch. Jamal worked out wonderfully. He was prompt, communicative, accommodating. We enjoyed the extras of stopping for a bite to eat along the highway at a local spot.
Thank you for your services. We do look forward to travelling to Panama in the future, likely the region in Boquete. We also look to use your services again.
October 17th, 2013
Thank you so much for your professionalism and attention to detail in arranging our visit to Panama. As you know, I am a native of Panama, however was seeking a travel experience that provided a sample Panama experience for my friend’s first time visit to Panama. Another critical requirement was a hassle free vacation. You indeed met all my requirements including securing all arrangements at a reasonable costs. Your flexibility and willingness to accommodate my many requests was a welcomed plus to my experience with Panama Travel Consultants. All the tours were arranged with professional drivers who ensured our safety and comfort throughout the trip. Besides a few glitches beyond anyone’s control (aka the weather), the trip was perfect! I would definitely recommend Panama travel consultants to my friends and family and will gladly use your services again.
Oswaldo and Myriam Gutierrez
September 24th 2013
This is to inform you that our vacation in Panama was a great success. The tour package that we bought from your company and that you personally worked for me was great. The hotels that you chose in the tour were first class. The hotel El Panama was the best because of the casino. The Gamboa tour that you used in Panama was excellent. The people that worked for this company are excellent employees, specially Cristobal.
The Panama Canal Full Transit Tour was an experience of a life time, my wife and I enjoyed it very much. Our Panama vacation was great and I have to thank you for your help in putting this tour package together.
I would like to recommended Panama Travel Consultants to any body who would like to travel to Panama. If in the future I need any help in my travel with my wife I would not hesitate in contact you for help.
Scott, my wife and I thank you for making this a successful vacation.
Oswaldo and Myriam
Dr. Barbara Blum
September 17th 2013
Scott Ludlum of Panama Travel Consultants is a superb travel consultant. He listens to what you want, who you are, and works with you to design a trip that will work for you. It is individualized travel at its best. He is easy to work with, doesn’t mind changing and tweaking plans as you come closer and closer to your ideal itinerary. Few travel consultants are as motivated to please, receptive to changing plans as your interests
Scott helped me plan an excellent and memorable trip to Panama. He knows the country, its culture and people. He designed with me, in numerous phone calls and emails, a phenomenal adventure visiting indigenous tribes, seeing the city, the mountains and the oceans. Working with Scott this was not a cookie cutter trip. I am a 68 year old woman and traveled solo but always felt there was someone watching my back and wanting to be sure that I felt safe and yet had adventures galore.
Dr. Barbara Blum
August 31, 2013
I contacted Scott at Panama Travel Consultants on the recommendation of someone I met on a flight that had used his services. I didn’t know how good a deal it was until after having had the Panama experience. If you don’t like being on a crowded tour bus, or risk a rental car, call Scott. Scott hooked us up with a guide named Jamal, a great individual, who took really good care of us.
Scott can set up a schedule that meets your personal desires. And with a private guide like Jamal, relax and enjoy your experience.
Just do it, call Scott, you’ll be glad you did.
August 6th, 2013
We liked Panama very much! Jamal was excellent and on time (to the minute!) for every single transfer. Once I get a chance I will post a more in-depth testimonial.
Thanks for your help!
Chris and Tara Dubois
August 1, 2013
I’d like to say that Panama Travel Consultants really helped us to have a great trip! You were very helpful in helping to recommend activities, organize the logistics, and put it all together in a way that made our trip stress free. We especially recommend the Panama Canal Partial Transit Tour. It’s definitely worth seeing.
24 July, 2013
Our family just got back from Panama with a full transit canal tour aboard the Pacific Queen as the highlight.
Panama Travel Consultants arranged the full canal transit. From start to finish,the company’s President, Scott Ludlum, was in constant touch with us.He was not only pleasant to deal with but also so helpful in assuring us on the success of our transit. By phone & by email, he gave us advice & some tips to better enjoy this very memorable journey.
The vessel his company uses is clean & well maintained, except for some tarp damage which got some passengers wet when the Pacific Queen encountered a serious thunderstorm approaching the Centenary Bridge. The rainfall was so heavy that no passengers stayed on the top deck for about an hour. It was only in Gatun Lake when passengers again ventured on the top deck.
Scott’s point person at the Flamenco Marina, Myrian Goncalves, not only was friendly but so efficient that so many passengers were settled in the vessel in a timely manner. Now the cruise host & narrator Gus is something else. Both in English & Spanish, he really knew his stuff. Inside out,he can state all the pertinent facts concerning the Canal plus much more. From Flamenco to Balboa through both Pacific Locks up to Colon, Gus knew how to time his narratives & make them more interesting.
Although breakfast & lunch are included in the package,it is still advisable to bring some snacks on board. The main deck’s dining area is about 3 flights of stairs down from the top deck so getting food is not so easy.
I would highly recommend Scott’s company to friends who are planning to travel to Panama as he can also arrange other tour packages
LU (only initials provided at the request of the client)
July 21, 2013
We had a fabulous time. Obviously Panama is a special plac. All the accommodations were very comfortable and the drivers were nice and punctual. The country and its people and culture are intriguing and charming. We did some side trips, of course. Your organization with drivers, hotels, tours were all excellent; although a couple were on Panama time.
We would like to visit again!
April 10, 2013
We had a wonderful trip. Thank you for all your good work in planning. Nine people and 3 generations is a challenge, but we did it!
First, Jamal is great. I asked him if he knew you and he said he knows your wife. He said other people seem to like his service, and we all agree he did a wonderful job. He is warm and friendly, polite, and seems to understand the delicate balance between host and part of the party/employee. We all just felt like he was family! Friday night he went out to dinner with our son and his wife and our daughter and her husband, just for fun as friends. My husband and I were happy to stay back with the kids and spend time with them alone. We admire his ambition.
My husband was so glad to see where his father was stationed in WWII, and Jamal drove us all over that area — Coco Solo, now incorporated into a military/industrial area. Portobello was interesting, and then what a surprise to go to Bananas in a row boat with a motor. What an adventure, and Bananas is delightful.
Gamboa is a beautiful place and unique, in my opinion, not just another resort. I think our rooms, the bathrooms, and the food was the best. The views are stupendous. In retrospect, however, with 3 generations to entertain, I think it is a little quiet. If we did it over again, we would book more side trips and then leave.
We loved the full transit of the canal. It is a LONG ride, but we wanted to say we did it — and we did.
So thank you, it was great, you did a wonderful job of coordinating so many aspects of our trip and we would recommend you to anyone. Feel free to use us as references. You looked out for our best interests and made us feel secure and cared for.
Rob and Helen Bell
March 18, 2013
Way To Go Scott,
My brother-in-law and I, have had the Panama Canal Transit on our BUCKET LIST
for several years. So, this was the year that we thought we better get our wives
packing, as we aren’t getting any younger, and make arrangements for our
long awaited Panama Canal Full Transit Excursion.
Thankfully, we discovered your website: PanamaTravelConsultants.com
which was so professionally designed, that we needed not look any further.
At first, we were just going to fly into Panama City, get a taxi and go to a Hotel.
Then we would pick and choose the Tours that looked inviting to us, after our arrival.
We discovered immediately, that it would be a lot smarter to have you make all the
arrangements with the Tours that you suggested, from your experience, and to
reserve a Private Tour and Driver for us, for the 5 days we were there.
We always had the same experienced, friendly, knowledgeable driver who
met us on our arrival at the airport (with our name printed on a large sign
to avoid our apprehension as there was a crowd of taxi drivers wanting our
business) who was the same person who took us back to the airport.
His service was impeccable from start to finish.
Panama is a beautiful Developing Country, with so much to see and explore,
where the people are friendly and helpful, on the street and in our Hotel.
The 4 of us had such a wonderful time, all because you made it easy for us
by making all our arrangements and reservations and still allowing us plenty
of leisure time to visit all the Malls and do some shopping.
You are very committed to your business and to your clients, keeping us informed via phone and emails. All promises were kept and there were no surprises.
For that, we are truly grateful.
KEN AND MARY
BENNIE AND ARLENE
March 7 thru March 12, 2013
March 6, 2013
We loved the canal transit- totally fascinating and full of good information. It was really an unforgettable experience. The old city is under reconstruction so it was fascinating to see the old ruins and renovated buildings side by side. Casa Sucre is beautifully renovated. The American hosts are very warm and helpful. They had arrangements with very reliable drivers to help us when we needed to get around.
The canal museum in the old part of the city was extraordinary and is highly recommended (way better than the museum at Miraflores).
Thanks so much for your help arranging our visit. It was a highly memorable experience.
February 28, 2013
I was just talking to my husband about the experiences Shari and I had in Panama and most came up glowing. Memories that will live on a long time.
Thanks for taking care of us as you did and for being understanding.
Monette and John Cotton
February 3, 2013
Are you thinking of a vacation in Panama City, Panama? Are you thinking of arranging the details yourself – on line? – by phone? We suggest that you let Scott Ludlum do the leg work for you. You will find him very accessible and responsive to your desires and you will get a much better deal on tours than you can get for yourself. As importantly, or maybe more-so, he will be able to guide you through the maze of mis-information which exists on line about tour details. He knows that wonderful city – you will enjoy a bit of an adventure there because, despite Scott’s help, not everything will work out as planned so leave some open days. We had a great time. If we head there again we will go get his help. Thanks again Scott.
Monette and John Cotton
Karen and Rich Kenney
February 02, 2013
Panama is so beautiful. Our trip in January was one we looked forward to and it was amazing.
Our full transit of the Canal was informative and spectacular. It was especially enjoyable for my husband. Such a success in engineering.
Boquete was probably our favorite few days, the scenery, people and tour of the Ruiz coffee farm was a highlight.
Who wouldn’t love the rainforest and Gamboa holds the lush tropical ambience, animals to watch and a comfortable hotel.
Thanks to Scott we experienced Panama, many areas of the country that we would not have thought to do on our own. All our accommodations were just right. The Boquete Garden Inn was a special treat. The tour guides were dependable, on time and informative.
Thanks Scott.Maybe we will get back to experience other areas of Panama.
Karen & Rich Kenney
January 23, 2013
We had a great time. Did things a little backwards though. Hiked to the waterfall. A rather rough terrain but got there. A beautiful spot and well worth the trudge through the jungle and the water.
The partial canal transit was good and our friends enjoyed it immensely. The guide in the boat is very knowledgeable and we enjoyed his narration.
Thanks for your help. Perhaps we will go to Boquete next time.
Dr. Maria Hernandez
This was a great experience. Your agency was excellent and the excursions were very professional. I had a great time and will definitely go back next year. I liked also the Gamboa excursion.
Lynette and David Roth
We want to thank you for helping make our Panama vacation everything we wanted — and more. Originally, we contacted a US-based travel company to help plan our trip, but they did not have the ability to book us in the types of accommodations we wanted (all their hotels were very high-end) and it was obvious that they did not have real knowledge of Panama. So when we found Panama Travel Consultants, we got a totally different experience. It is immediately clear that you know the country first-hand and could give us exactly what we hoped for. We felt that the vacation was personally customized for us. You made sure to keep the prices within our budget, while ensuring that we experienced so much! Throughout all the planning, we always felt that we could call or email with any questions or concerns and that we would get accurate and timely answers to everything. Even with restaurant recommendations, you knew great ones to suggest that were affordable and within walking distance to our hotel. You could tell us new places to try because you had just been there (and you visit regularly). So, we were sure that all your information was up to date and correct. Thank you so much for a truly personal and customized vacation, and I look forward to working with you again in the near future.
Lynette and David Roth
03 November 2012
I am pleased to state that Scott at Panama Travel Consultants was up to date with the latest travel information, cost effective tours, and hotel recommendations. I traveled to Panama City, Panama Oct 24/28-2012 for a short visit to see the Panama Canal and city tour to get a feel of this location to move to. Scott’s agent in Panama spoke perfect English and went out of his way to provide information, advise, transportation, and ideas for future planned visits. Scott, from his Florida, US office, was able to support my schedule from airport pick-up and drop-off on time and plan my stay without wasting time. I recommend this agency as a knowledgeable and a support driven company.
September 05, 2012
Thank you for the information that you give me. I did get in contact with Thelma. My mother, my fiance and I went on that trip on Saturday and we had a great experience. I’m very satisfied with the service. I will recommend it to everyone who is going to Panama for a vacation or visit.
July 05, 2012
Well, I cannot begin to tell you how fabulous our Panama vacation was… You did such an incredible job lining up our itinerary. We thoroughly enjoyed the Panama Canal partial transit & seeing Gatun Locks. The Sheraton Bijao was all you said that it would be. We love all inclusives. The weather even cooperated on our second day at the Sheraton so I got a lot of beach time. Just could go on & on!
I have posted pics on my Facebook and have already had several inquiries about Panama. I hope you don’t mind if I give your name to people. Gamboa Tours was top notch! We couldn’t have been more pleased, they were normally early.
We cannot wait to go back next year!
Thanks again, Scott!!!
May 31, 2012
We loved our trip to Panama. It was really great and everything was memorable.
We reserved 2 tours with Scott and we were delighted. The reservation was very easy and the service was perfect. The Portobelo and Embera tours were great. The guides were good and very friendly and we spent 2 very nice days discovering the beauties of Panama.
We enjoyed every single day and I would definitely recommend Panama and Panama travel consultants to everyone. We couldn’t have asked for a more wonderful trip.
Thanks a lot for helping us organising it.
May 17, 2012
“Recently my husband and I took our first trip to Panama, what a beautiful country. We quickly fell in love with everything that makes up Panama, the people, the food, the scenery, etc. We knew we did not want to do your ordinary 6 or 7 day all inclusive resort stay which is what we have done many times in past vacations to Mexico, Dom. Republic, Jamaica and other places. We wanted to be able to really customize this trip so that we could spend some time in Panama City and a few days at a resort. Scott was so great to work with (I found him on the internet), he took time and really worked with me to make this the dream trip I envisioned in my head. He made changes to keep it in the budget I had set, try getting that kind of personal attention from Apple or Fun Jet….not going to happen. Scott made arrangements with a tour company called Gamboa for our city tours and all our in country transportation, we felt like VIP’s, no being herded into a van or bus with a bunch of other people but our own private guide and tours. The hotel in Panama City and the resort we stayed at were clean, friendly and attentive to all our needs. We will definitely use Scott’s services in the future. Way to go Scott!!!!!”
Gene and Dolly Tucker
May 16, 2012
To whom it may concern:
My wife and I traveled to Panama in mid May, 2012 for a wedding. We wanted to see some of the country, and particularly tour the Panama Canal. We found Panama Travel Consultants listed in an online advertisement, and called Scott Ludlum, the President of the company via the phone number listed in the ad.
Mr Ludlum found a full length cruise of the Panama Canal, on the only day we (ourselves and two friends) were available to do it, and arranged every detail of the cruise: the financial arrangements, a full description of the required logistics, including transportation between the tour ship and our hotel, and the tour itself.
Then entire day (some 14 hours for the 50 mile full canal cruise, including transit through each of the six individual locks) was perfect (although Mr. Ludlum was probably not personally responsible for the perfect weather!). In execution, it was exactly as we had hoped and as Mr. Ludlum promised. It could not have been better.
Based on the outstanding performance in arranging the Panama Canal Tour, we asked Panama Travel Consultants to arrange a tour of two of the oldest areas of Panama City (Panama Viejo and Casco Viejo) for ourselves and our two friends. Mr. Ludlum’s company came through with a private tour, by minivan, with a knowledgeable and bilingual driver. We were able to see not only the two areas we requested, but he also arranged a quick shopping stop for local products, and a trip to the top of a mountain which has fantastic views of Panama City, the Pacific, and the entrance to the Panama Canal.
An additional plus in working with Panama Travel Consultants is that we were able to communicate with Mr. Ludlum by phone (on the first try) each time we called with questions or additional request – an almost unheard of benefit with most tour companies when one is ‘in country’, even though he was in the US at the time.
We most strongly recommend Mr. Ludlum’s company, Panama Travel Consultants as the company through which to make arrangements for tours anywhere in Panama.
Gene and Dolly Tucker
April 21, 2012
From the moment I contacted Panama Travel Consultants, you made my trip to Panama stress-free by not only arranging what I thought I wanted, but also encouraging me to consider options I hadn’t thought of. As a mature female (interesting way to say 65 year old) traveling alone, it is essential to have details worked out in advance in order to feel and be safe. You prepared me so well for the differences in culture and customs I felt at home in Panama City, Boquete and El Valle de Anton and am looking forward to going back again. The spa hotel at the journey end was a great touch, the 4 star restaurant next door amazing, even more so in such an out of the way place, and the chocolate body wrap to die for!
Thanks a bunch! If you ever want a reference, I will be more than happy to talk with anyone who may have questions.
February 07, 2012
I want to thank you for your hard work in putting together an outstanding week in Central Panama for me and my three travel companions. I usually make my own arrangements and travel independently. However, you put together a trip that allowed us to make our own way around the country easily and efficiently without the burden of traveling with a tour group. The itinerary you recommended met our specific needs and interests, the personal guides you arranged were outstanding, and the drivers you assigned were punctual and interesting in their own right. Also, the hotels you selected were exactly what we were looking for in terms of price, location and amenities. You gave us a broader and more in-depth personal experience than any group tour could have offered and for little more than half the price. Thanks again for your help.
February 06, 2012
Scott thanks for your kind words. Guess what? When (not if) I plan my trip next spring or who knows maybe this winter, you are so going to be my travel consultant. Thanks and best wishes for a prosperous 2012 for you and your wife. If you need a referral for character you have one.
Thanks so much
Donna and Gene Lewte