In late March on the Caribbean side of Panama, the weather grows calmer and cruisers select from many fine travel choices. Some prefer to stay in the San Blas archipelago for, like, ever. Others work their way NW to Panama's popular Bocas del Toro and all its anchorages and marinas. Perhaps the majority of Western Caribbean cruisers head for the summertime hurricane protection of the Rio Dulce in Honduras. If they sail there from Panama, cruisers typically take time along the way to visit Isla Providencia, due east of Nicaragua; gradually work their way north around Nicaragua's extensive shallows to the Vivorillos islands, then turn west to stop off at popular Isla Roatan in Honduras before closing out the cruising season by traveling up the Rio Dulce to one of its many marinas. It sounds like a grand tour and one that we'd considered. But this cruising season we had bigger fish to fry: we wanted to get to Mexico's Yucatan peninsula as quickly as possible so that we could tour Mayan ruins until we couldn't stand the tourism any longer and the approaching hurricane season forced The Fox onward to the US East Coast for a well-earned refit.
Thus it was that, contrary to almost every other cruiser out there, as soon as we found a long enough weather window we left Panama on March 28 and sailed 880 miles directly to Puerto Morelos, Mexico (located about halfway between Cozumel and Cancun). It was one of the calmest, easiest passages we've ever had. See above photo for wing-on-wing goodness.