Sixola, Costa Rica
Many, Many years ago I taught at the Colegio de Limon as a U S Peace Corps volunteer and Sixola was my gateway to Panama - in the days donkeys pulled carts along the Northern railroad lines.
I first crossed Sixola in 1967.
About 5 years ago I crossed Sixola once again and navigated the broken bridge - one of the high lights of our Arizona to Panama and return tour.
There were rickety planks of wood keeping us from dropping into the river quite a distance below. Make sure you have copies of your documents (there might be a copy machine), but it might not be working... and your papers (title, insurance passport with visa stamp etc ) in order and that you have several hours to spare. The border officials take breaks when they want and at Sixola there is a cafe and a couple stores specializing in rubber boots, and machetes. at least that was the scene 5 years ago. Be sure to check the hours the border is open...
There may be a back up of trucks, cars, motos etc.... You will do fine if you are relaxed and in tune with the lay back vibes of the officials and Ticos who live there.
A tip to handle the kids that want to help you with your border paperwork, line them all up and begin doing basic exercises such as jumping jacks - various bending and maybe a little Tai chi Let them mimic you and compliment them a lot...and as they are used to making a line - learned at school - and following instructions, you can have a good time with them while waiting your turn to have your documents sorted and cross the bridge to Panama.
If you distract the kids from their mission of being such a problem for you that you pay them to go away, you can actually ask names and sort of get to know them. Remember some of them are sent by their parents to work the tourists...I have employed the exercise ploy at about 30 borders throughout Central and South America and one, had some fun and two, became a real person as opposed to being an ATM distributing cash, to the kids.
xfiltrate ride hard ride free
Last edited by xfiltrate; 10 Jan 2012 at 20:05.