(BoqueteGuide)As I wrote earlier, despite statements by immigration that the tourist Visa is good for 180 days, it is not. My son needed to make his ninety day, run to the border. He spent three days in beautiful, sunny, Paso Canoas; a not too wonderful border town. Still it was better than another option and as I discovered I could drive him to the hotel and back.
Since I have never done the border tourfor an overnight stay myself I asked for some help. Mark from the restaurant formerly known as Amigos recommended Los Higerones, just across the frontier and according to my son Sebastian, very nice.
To get there, at the border turn left on the Panama side, drive just out of town to the first time you can cross the border on a unguarded road. Then turn right on the Costa Rican side and drive the UMSC a university, turn left and in a short distance you will see the sign above.
The hotel looks almost antebellum, I was looking for the cotton.
The cost a reasonable $42 a night, more than I was told it would be, but nothing stays the same and the dollar has declined against the Costa Rican Colon recently.
I learned something important as I drove back to the rather porous border on the Costa Rican side. I drove back to Panama through the official entry portal, where customs is located, I was stopped. It was explained that since I did not drive into Costa Rica with the correct papers for my car, I was only on the border, that I need to exit Costa Rica the way I entered, on another unofficial road. Only in Panama could customs tell me, only cross here if you have the papers, otherwise cross someplace we are not looking. All this with a smile and no problems.
While Sebastian settled into the hotel I explored the new City Mall. There are signs all along the Interamerican Highway announcing the new mall but no directions. When you get to the border, turn right and drive about 200 meters, it will be on your left. It is big, looks like Walmart and even has a McDonalds.
It is a big change for the border, a big box store, modern, clean and for the moment well maintained.