Agua Clara Locks
Agua Clara Locks
4.5
Points of Interest & LandmarksObservation Decks & Towers
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Duration: 2-3 hours
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Most Recent: Reviews ordered by most recent publish date in descending order.

Detailed Reviews: Reviews ordered by recency and descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as waiting time, length of visit, general tips, and location information.

Popular mentions

4.5
4.5 of 5 bubbles160 reviews
Excellent
101
Very good
43
Average
10
Poor
4
Terrible
2

Tulu
34 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Jan 2024 • Friends
I've been through a few small locks in the US. On a field trip from grade school I wasn't thrilled. Ten years later not too much. So visiting here and witnessing the ship being brought in was cool, but if this tour didn't have more on its itinerary, I would have bummed out. I'm not too into engineering and the like. Road on the way out toucans and howlers. That was cool !
Written 9 March 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Shanelle
Santa Monica, CA2,826 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jan 2024 • Friends
A chance to see a ship cross the Panama Canal using the newest set of locks? Count me in. It may be a bit anticlimactic but it was cool to see how Amazon packages get sent. The center had seating and a clear view of the canal with a narrator in both English and Spanish. There was a 10 minute film that played every half hour, and alternated between English and Spanish. The restrooms are clean and there’s a small souvenir shop. Note that they don’t have a lost and found, so if you lose a pair of sunglasses there (like me), just know that you probably won’t see them again. There was a security check of your bags at the beginning as well as a metal detector. There wasn’t a lot of people there when we went on a Monday morning, so it was nice not having to deal with a crowd.
Written 4 February 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

NewJerseyBen
New Jersey31 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jan 2024 • Family
We drove from Panama City in a rentacar (Via España Thrifty) and no regrets - the only iffy part is Panama City itself (drivers are a little crazy) and you'll need a navigator to know where to go. (One of us had an iphone navigator.) We never entered Colon - the neopanamax locks are a ways south of Colon. The Agua Clara visitor center is very well set up for viewing the function of the new locks. We watched two gigantic ships go thru. Be sure to go to the second viewing site - next to the huge control tower - by taking the shuttle, or it's a short walk. We also looked at the old Gatun Locks (from a distance as we drove by just west of them) and took the short drive to Gatun dam which creates Lake Gatun. To get there you cross the Atlantic Bridge, completed in 2019, an experience in itself. You'll also cross a short bridge across the Chagres river. Anyone into the history and the engineering of the Panama Canal will love all of this. Check it out!
Written 1 February 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

KathrynH
Central Florida, FL129 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Nov 2022
We took a shore excursion to see the Panama Canal. Our driver took us to the old locks first, then to the new locks. The new locks (Agua Clara) have a very nice viewing platform and beautifully maintained grounds with lots of information about the locks. They also have a room with a short film you can watch and clean restrooms.
Written 26 March 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Jim S
Mount Dora, FL120 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Mar 2023
This is a great way to see the upgraded Panama Canal lock but you may not see a ship pass through!. I did it as part of a cruise ship tour and we stayed about an hour. A ship was just entering the lock and I was able to see it go through the first change in water level from entry to exit, but there were no other ships in sight. I expected a line of ships waiting to get through, but only a few in the distance. So if your tour gets there with no ship in process you may be disappointed.

The vantage point offers a good view of the lock from above. There is a live person voicing the process in Spanish and English. There is a video that shows the history but I did not watch because I wanted to see the whole operation from start to finish. Used the short time the water was going down to grab a souvenir shirt from the gift shop.
Written 18 March 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Steve M
19 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2023
Good bilingual explanation of the process as ships came through. The lookout spot provided a great view.
Written 6 March 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

BigMerk
Glasgow, UK2,304 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2023
Our cruise ship tour took us here. It was great seeing the ships passing thru the locks from a high vantage point. There was a short film presentation on the history of the canal which was interesting too.
Written 22 February 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Scott
San Francisco, CA5,343 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Dec 2022
I loved it here. While the surrounding area is a bit rough, these locks have a great observation and tourist area. Like the Miraflores Locks, there's a live narrator. But the crowds are smaller and the views are more close-up. There's even a nice video in English Language explaining the canal. There's no café or snack bar, but there are a few vending machines. Parking is FREE and convenient.
Written 15 December 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Michelle T
New York City, NY673 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Sept 2022
Our tour took us to the Agua Clara Locks to see the Panama Canal. The Center offers panoramic views of the Canal - starting from Gatun Lake and through all 3 chambers of the Agua Clara Locks.

As ships pass through the locks, there is a running commentary with fun facts about the canal and the locks. They're made in both English and Spanish, which make it super tourist friendly.

The gift shop is excellent and I picked up one of my favorite souvenirs of the entire trip - a gorgeous Panama tote bag.

Staff were all very nice and professional. This really lets you get up close and watch the action. With the Miraflores Visitor Center museum and cafe still closed, this is actually a much more enjoyable option to seeing the canal.
Written 17 September 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Atravelfan
Atlanta257 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jul 2022
We have visited Mirafores several times in the past and wanted to experience the new locks during this visit. We had a driver take us from Panama City to the Agua Clara locks and were so glad we did. The new viewing area was lovely with excellent views of the entire transit. Great narration as a large container ship traversed the locks- he gave lots of really interesting information - this was done in both Spanish and English. I had pre- reserved times but not necessary as it was not busy at all when we were there at 1030am- YMMV.
Not really a gift shop person but this one, although small, was quite nice- with some lovely items.

Be sure to visit Agua Clara-it was well worth the time to drive there.
Written 18 July 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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AGUA CLARA LOCKS: All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go (with Photos)

Frequently Asked Questions about Agua Clara Locks




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