City: Rio Dulce, Guatemala
Kilometres ridden: 224
Cumulative kilometre: 27815
We left a bit later, since I wanted to put some Christmas decorations onto our bikes and Almi had another PC for Sigrid to fix. Almi’s sister – Kathy – came to say goodbye as well.
At the Rio Dulce bridge we meet a Guatemalian couple and they suggested a nice hotel with a pool, which was just what we needed, so we called it a day.
We were 240km from the border, that meant an early start tomorrow so we can make the border and find a hotel before it is dark.
City: Metapan, El Salvador
Kilometres ridden: 275
Cumulative kilometre: 28090
Early start and it took us two hours to get to the Guatemala border. We overtook a long line of trucks until a guy stopped us and told us to park the bikes on the right hand side. To keep it short, we crossed the border successfully after spending three hours on the Guatemala border and two hours on the El Salvadorian side. During the process we met an Argentinian couple in a 2CV (Ente), which travelled north. They earned some money by performing puppet plays and using the car as their stage.
When we left the border it was 4PM, so we decided to find a hotel in the next town. When we found a nice hotel Sigrid drove her bike up the step and through the door herself 😀
The plan for tomorrow was to get as close as possible to the Honduras border, since we would like to pass through Honduras in one day.
City: Santa Rosa de Lima, El Salvador
Kilometres ridden: 353
Cumulative kilometre: 28443
We packed the bikes and went to an ATM to get some more money but my card didn’t work, luckily Sigrid’s did. In the end we left at about 9:30 AM. We bypassed San Salvador and with it a large stretch of road maintenance, which could have easily cost us a couple of hours. Finally we made it to Santa Rosa de Lima, which was just 30km from the border. The hotel was a mixture of normal hotel and car hotel (hourly rented rooms). We have heard from fellow travellers that these types of hotels are safe, clean and cheap, and it was. We had a warm shower the first time in weeks and a good WiFi connection as well.
Tomorrow we will try to get through four border crossings and to ride 160km through a road with large potholes. Honduras border crossing has the reputation of being the worst crossing in Central and South America. So tomorrow we will give it a try.
City: Zomoto, Nicaragua
Kilometres ridden: 188
Cumulative kilometre: 28631
Started relative early and headed to the border. There was a long line of trucks that we ignored as usual and passed on the left hand side. When we finally stopped at a place that looked a bit official, plenty of helpers stormed toward us – a bit like flies. To cut is short, we met Peter -a fellow bike rider from England – on the border and we decided to share the cost for a helper to speed things up. Below is a picture of Peter and us on the bridge between El Salvador and Honduras.
The helper was doing all the work while we were chatting and after three and a half hours we were through the first two borders. That didn’t look too bad. Now there was plenty of time to ride the 160 km and to get through the other border as well before it gets dark. That was the first time that we rode a long stretch on the Pan American Highway. The first bit was like a normal highway, straight and reasonable well maintained. It was in no where near as bad as people described other roads in Honduras. Towards the Nicaragua border the highway changed into a nice twisty road, still well maintained, which was unexpected fun to ride it.
We arrived at the Honduras border around 1PM, so plenty of time to get through it. When we approached the border, a chain was tightened over the road, so we stopped and thought that an official would approach us. Instead the helpers were coming like flies again, we decided to take advantage of their service again to make the border crossing fast. Three and a half hours later we left the border and where in Nicaragua, Yippee, we made it in one day! To be honest, without the helpers we wouldn’t have made it in one day. We stopped at the next bigger town and had a look at the two hotels, one couldn’t park our bikes securely, the other was not flash, but it would do after a long day.
Tomorrow we have a look what we do for the next days, particular at the 21st December, Doomsday, the end of the world.