honduras & el salvador

“Travel is glamorous only in retrospect.”  -Paul Theroux

Poor little Honduras and El Salvador really got kicked to the curb on this trip. Back when we thought we had months to make it through Central America, instead of two, I had great plans for these countries. We heard from other travelers just to skip Honduras. I didn’t like the sound of this and we decided to head to Copan Ruinas anyway. The town had a colonial feel with cobblestone streets and all the men seemed to loiter about in jeans and white cowboy hats. The ruins outside of town were well preserved and the stelaes (standing stone monuments of the ancient Maya) were incredible. There were also tons of Macaws that had the most brilliant scarlet feathers. However, we were running short on time and decided we had to skip the Bay Islands where we had hoped to do some diving and relaxing. So I conceded this defeat and we got the “best” option for transportation to Nicaragua, and here is where the fun began.

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We’ve taken some ridiculous forms of transportation but this might just take the cake. To get to Nicaragua (geography lesson- it’s just south of Honduras) we boarded an old broke down minivan before dawn and headed west, not south. We crossed back through the Guatemala border, to just pass through the Honduras border again maybe an hour later. Okay, good we’re back on track. Not so fast, why are we going through the El Salvador border now? I must point out that at each of these border crossings we got out of the van, had to go through customs and immigration and pay any of the “necessary” fees. Once in El Salvador we dropped off some passengers, picked up a few more and stopped at a roadside café for lunch. Ezra and I pulled out our bread and peanut butter and ate our dry sandwiches like good frugal vagabonds.

After stretching our legs for a few minutes, it was back on the road again. I lost track (or maybe I just blocked the memory) of how many more border crossing we went through after this. I think we went back into Honduras one last time before finally crossing in to Nicaragua, because, why wouldn’t you? I can’t be sure of the length of time but I think this excursion took a sweet 18 hours, made to feel even longer by one girl’s incessant chatter about her travels and continually calling Costa Rica “Costa.” Dude, we’re all going the same route, stop talking. Ha ha. All in all an interesting day. Surprisingly this trip made me even more interested in El Salvador. Next time I guess.