On March 4 at approximately 12:30pm local time, National Geographic Sea Lion struck an uncharted rock while departing an anchorage in the Las Perlas Islands, approximately 70 nautical miles from Panama City. There were 55 passengers and 35 crew on board. There were no injuries to guests or crew. Family members were notified.
The vessel will go into dry dock at Panama City tomorrow to make repairs. The next scheduled departure, March 9-16 has been canceled. The ship will return to service with the March 16 departure from Colon, Panama. Travel Agent reached out to Lindblad representatives, who say that agent commission on the cancelled voyage is protected.
The vessel sustained damage to the hull and one propeller, but after clearance from US Coast Guard, returned to Panama City on its own power, arriving this morning at 5:00 am.
Guests on board were given the opportunity to continue their journey to Costa Rica by air and land, or to return home. All but 16 guests decided to continue their journey and flew this morning to San Jose, Costa Rica. Those guests who chose to return home will be given a full refund, including airfare. Those who will complete their journey by air and land will receive a $2,500 refund.
For more information, visit www.expeditions.com.