1. Posted by Frens (Budding Member 7 posts) 12y Star this if you like it!

Hi Guys,

Still planning my trip to central/south America for next january.
Written down a few country's/things i want to see and other things i want to do. But to get a rough idea of how long it can take i want to know how long it's taking from city to city. This so i know if i need to take country's / things to do of my list.

Guatamala City - San José
San José - Panama City
Quito - Lima
Lima - Santiago
Santiago - Buenos Aires
Buenos Aires - Rio de Janairo


2. Posted by bentivogli (Respected Member 2398 posts) 12y Star this if you like it!

Assuming you want to know time distance using ground trasport, without in-between breaks:

Quito - Lima: about 24 hours non-stop
Lima Santiago: must be more or less the same, possibly a bit more
Santiago - BsAs: about 18-20
BsAs-Rio: 32

Although there are direct busses on most of these connections, taking them is not recommendable. Instead, consider breaking up these journeys.


3. Posted by rasberries (Inactive 154 posts) 12y Star this if you like it!

Be careful on the buses man. Chances are nothing bad will happen but pick repitable companies due to rebel violence and there are many cases of groups of rebels stopping a bus taking evverything off you. Hide everything and try to keep as little cash on you as you can get away with. Don't bring id that you wont need.

4. Posted by Utrecht (Moderator 5669 posts) 12y Star this if you like it!

Lima Santiago is actually about 50 hours.

5. Posted by steff (Travel Guru 1162 posts) 12y Star this if you like it!

The bus trip from San José to Panama City is easy and takes about 18 hours. You can either go with Ticabus or Panaline, both charging you around 23 Euro one way.
Gutemala City to San José is a long, long journey and would take you around 3 days as you will stop over in El Salvador and Nicaragua. As much as I love Nicaragua and would recommend to visit, if you do not want to lose too much time your probably better off flying from Guatemala City to San José.

And in case you want to check Central America's major bus service Ticabus for schedules and prices go here ticabus

Hope this helps,


6. Posted by Frens (Budding Member 7 posts) 12y Star this if you like it!

Thanks for all your answers..
If now got a rough idea about how long it can take.
Got all the expected times, but only Lima - Santiago is uncertain. Is it 24 or 50 hours?

7. Posted by bentivogli (Respected Member 2398 posts) 12y Star this if you like it!

That one I never did myself, so if Utrecht says 50, he's probably right. That post of rasberries doesn't seem to make too much sense to me, btw; except for the (past) roadblocks in Bolivia, which don't have anything to do with crime, I NEVER heard the kind of stories he's referring to (in SA; I don't know about the middle). Still the advice about not bringing unnecessary luxury goods make sense, of course.

have fun!

[ Edit: Edited at Oct 8, 2006 5:36 AM by bentivogli ]

8. Posted by Utrecht (Moderator 5669 posts) 12y Star this if you like it!

To be honest, haven`t done the trip myself either, but I am in Peru right now and it says 2 1/4 days from Lima to Santiago.
As far as Rasberries post, I only heard this might be a very small problem on buses between for example Bogota and Quito. If in doubt, try to travel during the day and break your trip in two or 3 more shorter days of travelling. Or take the occasional flight if you are not on a tight budget.

[ Edit: Edited at Oct 8, 2006 11:49 AM by Utrecht ]

9. Posted by cat009 (Budding Member 28 posts) 11y Star this if you like it!

We did plenty of long journies in SA by bus early this year, all without major incident.

Generally found the standard pretty good, just takes a long time because the distances are so great.

Just take the usual traveller precautions like looking after your stuff at all times and you should be fine.

Have a great trip