The municipality of El Tunco is located on the Pacific Ocean and is known for its good waves for surfing. We relaxed here at over 30 degrees for a few days.
Ruta de las Flores
The Ruta de las Flores is an area in El Salvador that consists of several towns. We stayed in Juayua and went on a coffee tour from a cooperative that among other things grew coffee for Starbucks. On a tour to the 7 waterfalls “Ruta de las Siete Cascadas” we adventurously crossed rivers and rope down on the way. At Apaneca, we were at the labyrinth and ziplined from tree to tree.
There were hardly any hostels in El Salvador. We found the cheapest accommodations on Booking.com and Hotels.com.
International bus companies like TicaBus run from the capitals of neighboring countries such as Nicaragua and Guatemala. There is a good overview on Rome2Rio. Shuttles also run between the typical travel destinations. These are small buses that take you door-to-door. They are faster, more convenient and safer than public transportation. Especially on long journeys, they are not much more expensive than public transport because you save unnecessary overnight stays. We had the following shuttles:
From Leon (Nicaragua) to El Tunco. We drove a short distance through Honduras.
From El Tunco to Antigua Guatemala (Guatemala). Since we were visiting the Ruta de las Flores, the shuttle took us at an intersection. We already bought the shuttle ticket in El Tunco and organized the day of collection via WhatsApp.
Between the cities
The public buses are former American school buses and are called chicken buses because the locals sometimes take living chickens with them.
Traveling on the chicken bus is cumbersome with a large travel backpack. The buses are often overcrowded, there is hardly any space and there is a higher risk of theft. They last for ages because they stop at every dog house and you often have to change them for longer distances. Shuttles are more convenient, faster and safer.
As a German, you will buy a CA4 tourist card for $ 10 at the border, which is valid for 90 days. The “Central America-4 Agreement” applies to Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador and Nicaragua and only has to be bought once. The limit of 90 days is important. We had an unfriendly passenger in the shuttle and had to wait unnecessarily 1.5 hours due to passport problems at the border.
For El Salvador, we did not get a stamp in our passport on entering and leaving. This has never been in a country before and I was skeptical at the beginning as this could be a scam to collect a fine on departure.