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hoping for info on backpacking through cenral/south america

Travel Forums Central/South America & The Caribbean hoping for info on backpacking through cenral/south america

1. Posted by L.Cough (Budding Member 6 posts) 8y Star this if you like it!

I am planning a trip through central and south america and have many questions on costs and saftey and avalibilty of transportation and accomidation. I have backpacked through europe on a few occasions, but was only out for a month or two each time. I am planning on travelling for at least 6 months. Starting in cancun mexico, travelling down the yucatan into belize, then guatamala, which I hear is dangerous, but thats not going to stop me from going, though some tips on where to go and where not to would be greatly appriciated. From there I intend to head south through honduras, elsalvador, nicaragua, costa rica, and panama. I have some destinations picked out but was hoping for some suggestions that mabe aren't in lonely planet. Lokking to travel as cheap as possible, don't mind rustic living. I am hoping to be able to pitch a hammock most nights, it that reasonable? I have quality backcountry camp gear, is rogue camping not a good idea? I am trying to stay away from very touristy places but also want to see as much cool stuff as I can. I want to go to places where I will be able to hang out for a week or two and live simply and cheaply. I am figuring on roughly 1000 usd per month. will that be enough? Also I intend to hit cancun in september and hopefully reach panama by the end of december, then down to south america. Any reccomondations on getting across the darien gap. How much does it cost to sail from panama into colombia? Is Colombia really as dangerous as it's made out to be where it safe and where is worth going. Equador seems to be a relatively easy and backpacker friendly country, and I have a relative there so I am not to worried about there, but peru and bolivia are two at the top of my list. any reccomondations? Chile and argentina are a great interest to me as well. I am not sure how my money is going to hold out, but If I have the funds I would love to hit patagonia and then work my way up the atlantic side of the continent, haven't really researched any thing past the southern tip yet. Sorry I know this is alot to ask and a quite unplanned trip as you can see, but any info would be greatly appriciated. thanks much!

2. Posted by Piecar (Travel Guru 933 posts) 8y Star this if you like it!

These days it runs about 275 to sail the Darien Gap. A smug Aussie came on a month or so ago and said he just walked into a place and asked for a free ride, and got one for the price of a couple of beers and some Aussieness. I wish you the best with that plan.

What do you like to do, dude? Water, or jungle? City or country? Chicks and beer or tranquility and stern faced locals carrying machetes(it's just a tool down here. Don't be alarmed.)


3. Posted by SamSalmon (Respected Member 626 posts) 8y Star this if you like it!

Ecuador is much more dangerous than Colombia and don't expect your relative to protect you if someone sticks a knife in your ribs somewhere it's not the Ecuadoran way (or Colombian or Peruvian for that matter).

Pitching a hammock is fine-where do you expect to do this?

Because anyplace that has hammock hooks is going to want something for the service-nothing is free.

It's easy enough to travel cheap/eating in markets and on the streets is how most people there live, but just setting up camp in a patch of scrub outside a town is a poor idea.

How's you Spanish?

EDIT-do you have This Link?

[ Edit: Edited on 15-Jun-2009, at 22:08 by SamSalmon ]

4. Posted by L.Cough (Budding Member 6 posts) 8y Star this if you like it!

I am looking for a variety of things in this trip. Hiking camping and diving are my biggest interests, but I don't want to leave out cultural emersion, and a party city every here and there wouldn't hurt either. I am looking for the full latin american expirience, from tourist to local. I am aware that it is not safe to just throw up a tent anywhere, and that hammock slinging won't be free, but are there campgrounds, or backcountry camping, or hammock setups that will save me money or will I be spending the same as I would getting a bed in a hostel? I do realize that my relative will not save me from harm in ecuador, but he will be able to steer me clear of dangerous areas, and escort me to places that I should see. I have high school spanish classes and know the basics, but am far from fluent. any suggestions?

5. Posted by wanderer84 (Budding Member 21 posts) 8y Star this if you like it!

hey, i just got back from 2 months in central america. Did Belize, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua and Costa Rica. If u wanna know anything specific send me a msg. I spent a lot of time in Guatemala so i got quite a bit of info about it. Let me know!