The Panama Canal links the Atlantic Ocean and the Pacific Ocean. This canal cuts across the Isthmus of Panama and operates under the jurisdiction of the Panama Canal Authority.
Construction of the Panama Canal began in 1881 by the French, and it was first opened to ships on Aug. 15, 1914. The United States controlled the Panama Canal from its completion until 1999, when it was turned over to the government of Panama. Other routes used to travel between the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans include the Northwest passage in the arctic region and the Magellan Route, which circumnavigates South America.