Saturday, September 28, 2013

The Darién Gap: Our Crossing From Central America to South America

The Darién Gap in green (image from Wikipedia)

Until recently, most of our family and friends who are following our adventure didn't realize that we wouldn't be driving all the way to South America. Although there is land that connects Central America with South America, it is un-driveable. There is no road, and most of the land is either mountainous rain forest or swampy marshland. This Panamanian and Columbian land is collectively called the "Darién Gap". In order for us to continue our journey to South America, we had to put our truck on a ship, and put ourselves on a plane.
Crossing the Darién by boat from Colon to Caragena

Crossing the Darién Gap was undoubtedly the most expensive and drawn-out process of anything we've experienced so far. We started requesting quotes for shipping our truck on August 26th, 2013. We quickly chose our shipper (SC Line), who sent us a quote that was less than half the cost of the other shippers. We picked up our truck in Cartagena, Columbia 1 month later. One month of emails, phone calls, piles of paperwork, 9 nights in a hotel, a plane trip, mis-communication, non-communication, Spanglish, and SWEAT! Whew, did we sweat. Panama City is hot, but I think Cartagena takes it to a whole 'notha leva. The typical heat index in Cartagena is between 100 - 130F. Unfortunately, the heat of both cities prevented us from truly appreciating them.

Welcome to our office, bedroom, living room, and kitchen during our week in Cartagena
We posted more information about this experience under "Helpful Information" on our website: Shipping Our Vehicle Across The Darien Gap

Reunited and it feels so good!

1 comment:

Unknown said...

Thanks for sharing your latest experience about crossing the border. Very helpful for anyone going through the same process!

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