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Chiriqui Charlie 04-10-2012 02:51 PM

Ferry to Colombia!!!
The end of the sail crossings?

New Ferry Service Between Colon and Cartagena to Begin on 10 May 2012

Tuesday, April 10 2012 @ 01:34 PM COT
Contributed by: Don Winner
Views: 233
Nissos Rodos - New Ferry Service Between Colon in Panama and Cartagena in Colombia

The Caribbean cities of Colon in Panama and Cartagena de Indias in Colombia will be connected as of 10 May 2012 by a new ferry service, which will cover the shipping route in about seven hours, said the general manager of the company Aventuras 2000, Augusto Terracina. "The intention is to be able to connect these two countries which have always had a good relationship in both the tourist and commercial sectors," said Terracina, as part of a press conference to announce the launch. Terracina said the ferry "Nissos Rodos" of the cruise line Panamerican Seaways has a capacity to carry approximately 1,500 people, but they will start running at about half capacity, and they will also be carrying shipping containers and automobiles. He said the intention of Adventura 2000, which manages the Colon 2000 port in the Caribbean city of the same name, is to open Panama to the tourism and commercial landscape of the second country with the highest number of annual tourists. "We will be able to bring many more Colombian tourists from other regions, hoping this will become a mass product which attract groups for conventions, trips and other activities in Panama," he said. He said the investment is more than $15 million dollars, including making necessary improvements to the Colon 2000 port, improvements to the ferry ship itself, as well as the promotional aspect to be held in Panama and in Colombia. (more - prices and schedules)
The inaugural departure is on 10 May 2012 from the city of Colon, and the next day there will be a similar ceremony at the port of Cartagena. Trips are scheduled to depart from either of the two ports at 6:00 pm local (23.00 GMT) and will arrive at 7:00 am local time (12.00 GMT) the following day. The ferry will make six trips each week, with three departing from Colon and three from Cartagena. The ferry will depart on Monday, Thursday and Saturday from the Panamanian port, and on Sundays, Tuesdays and Fridays from the Colombian city.
The trip on the Greek ship "Nissos Rodos" will have a cost ranging from $99 dollars for a "delux seat" to $508 dollars for a "presidential suite." The ship will also have the capacity for 500 cars and 2,000 square feet for cargo.
Terracina said the ferry will be manned by a Greek crew, who will be responsible to manage the boat, as well as Colombians and Panamanians who will be responsible for the restaurant, shopping and entertainment.
The first ferry crossings between the ports of Colon and Cartagena to promote trade and tourism in both countries were recorded between 1994 and 1997, but did not have the desired success due to several factors. In that sense, Terracina said tourism in Panama at that time was still emerging, and in Colombian there was the latent political problem between the government of that country and the guerrillas. But now the conditions of both countries are different, especially in Panama, where the tourist and commercial activity is in one of his best. (Panama America)
Editor's Comment: Excellent news! A lot of people fly between Panama and Colombia every day, and this will open up a new and much more economical option for those travelers. Hopefully the governments of both Panama and Colombia will make it easy for people to bring their cars with them if they want to - so you can go to Colombian and drive around for a week or whatever, without having to rent a car. I really hope these guys are successful. Another upgrade, great.

Slowphil 04-10-2012 04:03 PM

excellent, I was thinking of booking on the stahlratte but will probably go with the ferry just because of the cost:clap

Airhead Wrangler 04-10-2012 04:41 PM

Something tells me the sailboats are all about to get a lot cheaper.

markharf 04-10-2012 04:58 PM

I read the press release elsewhere, and I still don't believe it. 1500 (or 750) people, 500 cars, containers, three trips per week.....

I've been wrong before.


kito 04-10-2012 05:18 PM

it would make life a lot better for all the travelers .umm more options and things should start to get a bit cheeper:clap

GastonUSAChile 04-10-2012 07:46 PM

Good news!!!!

Panamá (EFE). Las ciudades caribeñas de Colón, en Panamá, y Cartagena de Indias, en Colombia, serán conectadas a partir del 10 de mayo próximo a través de un ferry, que cubrirá la ruta marítima en aproximadamente en siete horas, informó hoy el gerente general de la empresa Aventuras 2000, Augusto Terracina.
“La intención es la de poder conectar estos dos países que siempre han tenido una muy buena relación tanto turísticas como comerciales”, señaló Terracina a Efe, en el marco de una conferencia de prensa para anunciar el lanzamiento.
Terracina indicó que el ferry “Nissos Rodos”, de la línea naviera Panamerican Seaways, tiene una capacidad aproximada para 1.500 personas, pero se empezará con la mitad de ellos, además de llevar cargas de contenedores y automóviles.
Señaló que la intención de Aventura 2000, que administra el puerto Colón 2000 en la ciudad caribeña del mismo nombre, es abrir hacia Panamá el panorama turístico y comercial del segundo país que registra anualmente el mayor número de turistas.

“Vamos a poder traer muchos más turistas colombianos de otras regiones, esperando que esto se convierta en un producto masivo donde se atraigan grupos para realizar convenciones, excursiones escolares y otros tipos de actividades en Panamá”, destacó.

Precisó que la inversión es superior a los 15 millones de dólares, que incluye la adecuación del puerto Colón 2000, de la misma embarcación, así como el aspecto promocional que se desarrollará tanto en Panamá como en Colombia.

La salida inaugural será el próximo 10 de mayo desde la ciudad de Colón, y al día siguiente se hará una ceremonia similar en el puerto de Cartagena.

Los viajes están programados para partir desde cualquiera de los dos puertos a las 18.00 horas locales (23.00 GMT) y llegada a las 07.00 horas locales (12.00 GMT del día siguiente).

Se registrarán seis viajes, tres desde la ciudad de Colón y otros tres desde Cartagena. Los días lunes, jueves y sábado desde el puerto panameño, y los días domingo, martes y viernes desde la ciudad colombiana.

La travesía por el buque griego “Nissos Rodos” tendrá costos que van desde los 99 dólares (asiento de lujo) hasta los 508 dólares (suite presidencial), así como la capacidad para 500 automóviles y 2.000 metros cuadrados para carga.

Terracina señaló que la tripulación contará con personal griego, quienes serán los encargados de manejar la embarcación, así como colombiano y panameño, quienes tendrán la responsabilidad de los aspectos relacionados con el restaurante, las tiendas y los espectáculos.

tedder 04-10-2012 08:33 PM

205 but it is a new press release.

But really bad form to copy and paste the article without leaving a link to the source.

moto-treks 04-11-2012 07:01 AM

That will provide another good option for crossing the Gap. :clap

Chiriqui Charlie 04-11-2012 12:53 PM

The link is there. See the author's name, Don Winner, which is underlined. That is the link to the newspaper.

CheckerdD 04-11-2012 01:35 PM

Anything is better than the airfreight companies. I am still upset about the amount of damage Garig did to my bike and would not reimburse me for. Dave

bananaman 04-11-2012 07:09 PM

I actually know Steve Taraci and a few of the guys at Colon 2000. Augusto Terracino used to be partners with Steve, but I never met him. Colon 2000 is a for-real company and they have access to the capital needed to make this work.

I just got off the phone with my uncle, and he says he just learned about it today, the same as the rest of us.

I guess everything I thought about it never happening was wrong. Sorry.

Hopefully this works.

snohobo 04-12-2012 06:10 AM


Originally Posted by bananaman (Post 18435836)

I guess everything I thought about it never happening was wrong. Sorry.

Hopefully this works.

I was with you on this bananaman. It might get off the ground but who knows how long it'll last.

Careful with those Greek captains though.

Chiriqui Charlie 04-12-2012 08:52 AM

I don't see how they can make it work financially. A ship that size is very expensive to run, how will they generate enough traffic. Unless they can haul a lot of trucks and containers, private vehicles wouldn't even pay for the fuel. I sure hope it works, I want to go to South America SO BAD!

moto-treks 04-12-2012 08:59 AM


Originally Posted by Chiriqui Charlie (Post 18439555)
I don't see how they can make it work financially. A ship that size is very expensive to run, how will they generate enough traffic. Unless they can haul a lot of trucks and containers, private vehicles wouldn't even pay for the fuel. I sure hope it works, I want to go to South America SO BAD!

These are other things then cars in Colombia that need to make its way north. I'm guessing once the service starts a lot of companies will start shipping goods via trucks.

GastonUSAChile 04-12-2012 10:04 AM

Most probably the vessel was leased to the Greek Line because is not sailing in Greece anymore.
I hope this thing is well organized because it is incredible for me to see that the first voyage is schedule for May10th, which is around the corner and seeing no indications on where to make reservations or a registered company in charge.
The idea was introduced by Pan American Seeways in a Bogota Convention among other tourist services promoted by Pan American. Also It was said that some port projects in Colon (Colon 2000) woul be needed for such task. All of that by May 10th? ok,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,

How they are going to resolve Customs issues, inspections and other matters, when in Cartagena you spent at least 3-4 days, delivering the vehicle to the port, buying insurance for the port, waiting for police inspection etc...
This is not like in Europe or a ferry transiting within the same territory, where things are practical (get in /get out).

Will see the outcome. I am a little skeptical about this service. It require a lot of reciprocal coordination between both Panama/Colombia, beside drug issues.

May 10th is the starting point. We'll see!

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