Crossing into Argentina – 5121km to the End of the World

It’s time to start the last chapter of my adventure – Argentina. One month left and the plan is to do 5121km south (3182 miles for you Americans) and then 2043km (1270 miles) back north to Buenos Aires.

The distance and the time frame is not the hardest. Jana had the craziest idea – hitchhiking. 

– No way, I said.

I was terrified. Even with all my love, faith and confidence into my free-spirited, adventurous and brave friend Jana, I thought she had an insane plan and I was about to become a part of it.

– Com’n now!!!  -said Jana – we are not paying hundreds of dollars for bus tickets in Argentina. And… she was right.

It was the craziest idea for two girls to travel “a dedo” – hitchhiking across a huge country where you could only hear about people being robbed.We asked for a cardboard in the border town of Villazon (Bolivia), bought a thick black marker, drew “HASTA EL FIN” and headed to the border.

HASTA EL FIN (To The End) had a lot of meaning for us. It was travelling to the End of The World, being  at the very end of out trip, and coming to the end of our personal journey. And… one, two, three – awh!!!

THE BORDER CROSSING: was the easiest I have experienced in Latin America. Exit stamp – boom, chit-chatting with the border officials, enter stamp – boom and we were walking towards the sign that said “5121km to Usuaia” – our destination.

US DOLLARS IN ARGENTINA: OJO!  Before you cross into Argentina be aware of the monetary system. Full-fill your pockets, money belts, bras, and underwear with US Dollars. Also, the closer you are to the border, the better is your exchange rate. But, careful, don’t change all of your bucks because the exchange rate jumps up and down.

GETTING US DOLLARS IN VILLAZON: There was just one ATM that would give you US dollars in Villazone. If go to the main park plaza, then one block down and one block up towards Bolivia, there is going to be one ATM hidden under the trees that will give you US Dollars. Get your pepper spray out and go in groups or at least couples.