Driving The Panamerican Highway! help!

Travel Forums Central/South America & The Caribbean Driving The Panamerican Highway! help!

1. Posted by i c e (Full Member 326 posts) 11y Star this if you like it!

Hola todos!
My family and eight are going to drive the panamerican very soon on a mission trip. Were going To Ship a Mercedes Sprinter Van and tow a Pop-up tent camper. I am trying to gather as much info as possible. any info you think would be helpful please post it!

1). What are prices for Diesel?

2). Are there any places to camp for rv's?

3) Is it hard to cross the borders?

4). Is there any thing i could do to my van to make more suitable for south american travel?

5) What is the best time of year to go?

6). Whats one thing you wouldn't go with out?


Thank You

Pura Vida,

2. Posted by marlis (Travel Guru 1167 posts) 11y Star this if you like it!

hi Josue,
where will you start?

The Panamericana is not always like a highway,and keep the Darien Gap/Panama in mind,there you have to ship your car to Colombia.

3. Posted by i c e (Full Member 326 posts) 11y Star this if you like it!

I will ship my vehicle to venazuela and drive all the way to Brazil!

4. Posted by i c e (Full Member 326 posts) 11y Star this if you like it!

Some body got to know some thing on this subject!

5. Posted by dbloom (Travel Guru 586 posts) 11y Star this if you like it!

Sent you the information you will need to start, you should the driver-campers Yahoo User Groups and ask questions, however most of the containers RORO from Panama will ship your vehicle into either Colombia (Caribbean side) or Ecuador (Pacific side) would not advise you traveling alone in rural Colombia, Venezuela (nor in highly dangerous urban Caracas), one is able to ship vehicles by boat through the Amazon, no roads or few in far north of Brasil. Hope your Spanish and Portuguese is up to par as well as your patience for the border crossing and shipping out of Panama!!!!!!!!!

6. Posted by dbloom (Travel Guru 586 posts) 11y Star this if you like it!

PS Technically and by law you are not allowed to tow in either Guatemala nor Costa Rica, be prepared for mordida (bribe) issues enroute, pretending to not speak Spanish does not work anymore. Best check with your nearest Guatemalan and costa Rican consulates before your departure.

7. Posted by kir19 (Inactive 55 posts) 11y Star this if you like it!

i've only been between panama and costa rica. the "border" crossing via the panamerican is quite entertaining. i was on a bus and it took us 2 hours to pass through! lots of waiting in lines and whatnot. i believe its easier though for private vehicles as opposed to busloads of people. not everyone speaks english so make sure you're up on your spanish!

p.s. bring toilet paper =)

8. Posted by i c e (Full Member 326 posts) 11y Star this if you like it!

Hey thanks Every one! I appreciate the help, Though I was asking concerning South America. I just returned from Central America. I speak fluent spanish and am learning portuguese (not easy). If any knows the answers to the first things I asked and could post them that would be great!

Fique Um Dues (Portuguese, See I am learning)


9. Posted by dbloom (Travel Guru 586 posts) 11y Star this if you like it!

You failed to say you were asking about SOUTH America and where you are shipping the vehicle FROM and TO, one has to be specific to get specific answers...there are many bloqqers on the web who have written up their SA journeys by vehicle. Also join the "Hospitality Clubs" many local and ex pat members enroute that would probably let you camp on their property, you also need teh guide book...Footprint South America Handbook..very detailed..Amazon or your local book stores, travel section as well as detailed maps. Learn how to use the search engines, man!!!!!

10. Posted by RCGoodman (First Time Poster 1 posts) 10y Star this if you like it!

I drove the highway last year. We took our $500 pontiac from vancouver to panama city in 2.5 months without a problem. Be prepared to sleep in the car, and hit a few pot-holes, but over all its a safe and very achievable drive. although prepare for an adventure because things can go south fast. If you need basic information, or want to reach me for a conversation check out my blog at -snip-


Moderator comment: Personal website addresses are not allowed in the open forums. Please see the Forum Rules and exchange that information using the Message Center. Thank you.

[ Edit: Removed website address. ]