Paraguay...I don't know why?!
Trip Start May 04, 2011
23Trip End Jun 23, 2012
Map your own trip!
Show trip route
So, being on the boarder of Brazil and Paraguay it seemed silly not to hop over the "friendship bridge" to Paraguay, getting that all important passport stamp and gaining another country to add to our ever growing list.
Hearing a mix of reviews about Paraguay and after reading, "an air of mystery hangs over this unexplored pocket of South America, a country of farmland, nature and folklore", it wasn't high on our desired list! We checked the footprint guide on places to visit and decided with it being only an hour away that we would go to Ciudad del Este; Latin America's biggest shopping centre, hosting Itaipu -the world’s largest hydroelectric dam AND... it’s conveniently situated on the boarder of Brazil
We checked into Tia Nancy, a rather seedy looking establishment and so we were later told also situated in a transvestite area! After 6 months of travelling in Spanish speaking countries both Chris and I felt that our vocabulary was coming along and generally we could find out the necessary information needed when booking things like buses...this was not to be the case in Paraguay! For some reason all of our Spanish was lost in translation and no matter how many charade performances we acted out, we left the bus station not really sure if catching a bus to Brazil was going to be as easy as we originally thought.
Anyway, with our time in Paraguay rapidly ticking away we stood at the side of the road for a bus to the town centre where we would then swap for another bus to Itaipu, or again, so we thought. Jumping on our first chicken bus since Guatemala we were soon on route, which shouldn’t have taken us long at all. Thirty minutes in and the buildings of civilisation slipping away we soon realised that we were going further and further in the wrong direction! Stopping the bus abruptly we rushed off and opted for the more expensive taxi option, at least this way we knew we would actually get to the dam
So that was number one tick in the box, unfortunately by the time we navigated our way back on the chicken buses it was too late to get tick two, so thought we would check out the tax free shopping before we crossed to Brazil the next morning. Heading back to Tia Nancy down the litter strew streets and it dawning on us that every street corner happened to have armed security guards, we started to feel somewhat unsafe and decided our only night in Paraguay would be spent in the safety of our dingy hostel room.
Up and out at 6:00am we attempted our border crossing over to Brazil, all was going well until the border itself
Favourite Meal – Burger King= Both (it was the only place that felt safe!)
Favourite Drink – Burger King Sprite = Both
Favourite Place – Itaipu = Both
Trying to understand the bus routes = Both