Panama Canal Railway
Check out the website : http://www.panarail.com/en/passenger/
Unfortunately, as late as December 2022 the website has the following announcement:
Important Notice: due to the COVID-19 Pandemic and ongoing health concerns, the daily passenger service between Panama City and the City of Colon has been suspended until further notice.
Until this daily service is reinstated, we will on occasions offer special trains on select dates. These dates will be announced on our Instagram page @panamarailway.
The Panama Canal Railway was the first transcontinental railway in the world.
The first track was constructed between 1850-1855 in response to the 1849 California gold rush. The Panama Canal Railway Company proved to be a veritable cash cow with one-way fares as much as US$25. The one-way fare today is? You guessed it, US$25!
The train runs parallel to the Canal, 47.6 miles from Colón to Balboa in Panama City, and will be on your port side.
Usually a tourist train runs once every day departing at 07:15 from Panama City and back from Colon at 17:15.
The primary function of the railway today is to move some 1,500 containers a day between the Atlantic and Pacific ports, on trains with up to 55 flatbeds or double-stacks. This is done for container vessels, which are too large for existing lock chambers, and also to move empty containers.
Atlantic Train Station (Colon)
The train station on the Caribbean side is not a proper station, just a platform.
You could walk between the train and bus stations but it is a pretty dodgy area, so you are better to catch a taxi which should be US$2 per person.
Corozal Passenger Station (Panama City)
Unfortunately the station at the Panama City end is out of the city, close to Miraflores Locks. The local buses pass close by, but you probably want to catch Uber or a taxi, especially as it is easy to miss.
One carriage is a vintage dome car that was built for the Southern Pacific Railroad in 1938. There is no extra charge for this, but it is often filled with tour groups who might try to claim exclusive access.
There are outdoor viewing platforms at the ends of the carriages.
Included in the price is a souvenir snack box, and all passenger cars have a bar and snack service.