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Hi everyone,

 

I'm heading out on my quickie trip to Nicaragua this Sat, 5 Oct. I'll post here to let you know how it went. Cost will be around $300 for the 5-hour trip.

 

regards,

Gayle

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Expensive trip. Lot from this area do the day tour. $120 includes breakfast, nice lunch, border fees, boat ride around islands of Grenada, Masaya market & volcano, Catarina lagoon. All included except if you buy something. Pick up at your home or hotel in nice A/C van.

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Carol, now that it's too late for me, where's "this area?" Assume from San Ramon would be more expensive (and would take a lot more than just a day.) Please post more info and/or a link. When we return, assuming we still don't have our cedulas, we'll be looking at another border run 90 days later.

 

I really just wanted to get this done. Spouse leaves on 18 Oct and my driver's license (because of the visa issue) is good only through the 5th, and I need to be legal to drive. (The CR driver's license issue totally blindsided me, as I didn't find out about it until 26 Sept from the El Residente article in the Oct issue.)

 

regards,

Gayle

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This is Playa del Coco area & know they pick up a far as Liberia. Have gone on this trip 5 times with friends. Lot of different tour group do it from here.

www.ticotoursguanacaste.com/ This one is a real reliable company.

www.plustransportcr.com/ another one

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Wow! $300 for a 5 hour trip is really high! Is that for just one person?

 

I just returned from a wonderful trip to Granada Nicaragua. Spent 3 days at a cute hotel (Casa San Francisco) that cost about $62 per night for 2 of us, and included breakfast. We went by bus from Liberia, which took about 4 1/2 hours each way, including the time wasted at the border. The bus trip was in a luxury bus with padded seats & A/C, cost was $52 round trip per person and it is the same price if you get on in San Jose. Border fees were $14/per person going in to Nicaragua, and $4 coming back. (That included an add-on dollar for the bus driver to process the customs forms.)

 

We did a previous trip to San Juan del Sur, where we had a lobster lunch for about $12 each, in July. We parked our own car on the CR side of the border ($8), walked across, paid about $12 for exit fee, or something official, then $30 taxi to San Juan del Sur, each way. Total was less than $125 for 2 of us including lobster lunch & couple of beers!

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$300! I took the bus from San Carlos to Los Chilies, took the 1:00 boat, had lunch in Nicaragua, took the 4:00 pm boat back, got a 3 month stamp. The people at the CR immigration are the friendliest people on the planet!

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Hi everyone,

 

I'm back from my quickie trip and here's my report, part of which should really go under the forum on CR residency, but I'm posting it here.

 

First, there was a charter flight from Pavas to San Juan de ?? in Nicaragua. The airport in Nicaragua seems to be strictly for the Rio Indio Lodge, as it and the lodge are both in the middle of nowhere. You clear customs, pay your entrance tax and get an entrance stamp, then walk down a boardwalk to the lanchas, where they take you to the lodge, which is about a 5 minute trip. The lodge is stunning, and you get a very nice lunch (all the fresh langostinos you want + salad, fresh fruit, etc), and as much cas and coffee as you'd like. They take you on a boat tour down the river and to the nearby pueblo, then it's time to walk back to the airport, pay your exit tax, clear out of Nicaragua, and get on your flight back to Pavas. It was a very pleasant trip.

 

Given that I had so little time, it worked for me. I'll try the Los Chiles trip next time. Breakdown of fees is below (and note that it's all in US $ because that's what everyone wanted):

 

$225 flight, boat rides, lunch

$ 29 exit fee for CR

$ 16 entrance fees to Nicaragua

$ 20 exit fee for Nicaragua

$290

 

Now, the really interesting part: returning to CR, the Migra guy in Pavas positively berated me when he saw my Comprobante. "It's more than a year old! You need to check with Migracion to see what's taking so long. You need to do it personally, not have a lawyer do it! It's much faster if you don't have a lawyer. Go to Migracion!" Then he added that lawyers just add to the cost and there's absolutely no need for one. I pointed out that my Spanish isn't all that good (most of this conversation was in English -- I tried to speak a little in Spanish), and he said, "No, your Spanish is good enough." I also pointed out that of a number of people I know of who applied around the same time, not one of them has received a cedula.

 

Don't know what any of us is supposed to do with this info, but there you have it.

 

regards,

Gayle

 

ps: yes, and I know it was expensive, but I did not have time for a leisurely trip. I am generally pretty cheap, but this trip was exactly what I needed to do this time.

Edited by salish sea

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Hi Gayle,

 

Thank you for the very nice trip report. I am sorry you did not have more time to explore the area. BTW, wasn't that San Juan del Norte (SJdN) that you mentioned when you posted the other day? That would make the lodge near the Atlantic coast.

 

I also wonder, since you say the trip was slightly rushed (tho appropriate for you this time), whether this trip could be arranged to allow one to stay over one or two extra days so that you could tour more of the river and visit the nearby pueblo a bit longer so you would be able to get some immersion spanish practice. If the Lodge is vastly expensive, which it looks like it could be, perhaps there is a hotel or pension in the pueblo proper that would be less expensive than the Lodge and on the whole still not be too decrepit or too dirty.

 

I hope you thanked the La Migra official (anyway) who was 'counseling you' about your cédula taking so long, etc. You might have been able to get some further advice about getting your cédula expedited. Also when he said your spanish was 'good enough' you could have countered with, "yes, thank you for that compliment, but my spanish comprehension is still not all that good yet and I often get lost during a conversation." So did he really berate you or did he become somewhat more helpful once you'd pointed out others you know having their cédulas take so long. Just curious...

 

Cheers!

 

Paul M.

==

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Gayle,

 

I found the whole conversation with the official very amusing. Seems like he was blaming you for the delays in obtaining residency, when you have zero control over it. That's soooo CR. Thanks for the update.

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