i live in california and recently met a girl from colombia. we're talking about taking a trip through south america. we want to take a bus from tia juana, mexico to panama. has anyone ever done this or have vicarious experience with this? if so, can you tell me what bus companies to look into and how much approximately i should expect it to cost? does each country have it's own bus line or is it possible to take the same bus from mexico to panama? also, are there any issues with regard to safety? thanks.
Uhm, do you have any idea how many hours that will be in a bus? I guess a week of pure driving time, another week or so to change buses and stay overnight. If it's just ment to go to Panama and not seeing anything in between, just take a fligt from LA to Panama City, it might work out much cheaper I guess.
I have no real information of true value. However I have been checking out the various ways to pass through Mexico to get to Guatemala. First thing I found out is that if you're going to pass through Mexico to Central America by land based public transportation you can only enter at Brownsville,Tx.into Matamoros. I also found out that the least hassle transportation is by rail. This info could be wrong but Check with the Mexico Consulate they will know what routes busses take, where to get pricing and scheduling info, visas needed,ect. Escapeartist.com might have some help for you.
Easy...but a bit tough on the tushie..long ride..so stopover frequently. From Dallas or Houston in Texas, Phoenix/Tucson in Arizona or San Diego, CA. USA are Mexican operated bus companies that will take you over the border to the Mexican bus stations, or take Greyhound services, best across the border, don't hang around the Mexican border towns, read the news, you are able to make all your Mexican bus reservations with them as far as Mexico City, where you will have to change buses (take an authorized taxi at the booth in terminal by purchasing a zoned ticket) from arrival at Terminal del Norte to the TAPO Terminal, where the ADO Bus Lines serve southeastern Mexico, take Luxury or First Class a/c wc video attendent buses for long rides between cities and the same between the countries of Central America..TICA Buses... ticabus dot com ... ply from Tapachula, Mexico (30 km. west of the Guatemala border crossing) with stopovers in every country enroute..Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras (Tegucigalpa), Nicaragua, Costa Rica and finally Panama. Reservations in advance (usually 24 hours or so) are required on all the forementioned Bus lines. within countries, leaving your luggage, passport and valuables safely in your lodging place you can take second and third (chicken bus) class bus rides around the countryside at your leisure and meet the people off the beaten tourist path. A long ride. Get in and out of the capital cities as soon as possible after you confirm your reservations if this is your first trip, you don't know your way around and your Spanish is below basic. Guatemala and all the other countries offer Spanish Schools, one on one instruction, weekly basis, with home stay and some volunteer ops as well. Base first in travel destinations such as Antigua, Lake Atitlan Guatemala or Granada, nicaragua and find a travel companion or two if possible. Better to have company along for part of the journey, avoid (or be aware in if taking transport) Bus stations, urban bus stops and crowded market places, especially when traveling alone with luggage/valuables. Never be paranoid and never walk alone late at night in large cities nor remote areas, especially Beaches. Take taxis home at night in cities. By day, take urban public transport, after rush hours bests. City buses rarely run late by night in Central America, nor does the TICA Bus International ply overnight*, people generally get up early and go to bed early. *In Mexico, Luxury/1st Class Coaches ply overnights with two drivers on board for long journeys, Mexico has a network of Toll Roads called Autopistas or Cuotas and raods are policed at night. Mexican and Central American 1st Class Service is far superior to Greyhound services in the USA and your fellow travelers are generally friendlier. Message me with your e mail if requiring more info. Buen Viaje.
To fredj47 Every Mexican Border town or city of any size boasts a Camionera or Bus Terminal with daily and nightly arrivals and departures, some connecting with Greyhound and Mexican operated carriers based in USA cities, passenger train travel now is practically non existent in Mexico now, still think the Copper Canyon Tourist Train plys from Ciudad Juarez, near El Paso, to Mazatlan for the magnificent scenery. Mexico boasts one of the best Passenger Bus systems in the world. I would love more trains, everywhere, but alas, they are disappearing except for Freight services.
Not to hard to do, there are pretty good bus companies which run through all major cities in Central America. Check out the below website for the Tica Bus:
Company also has hotels close to stations as they do not travel at night.
[ Edit: Snip, snip, no promos please! ]