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La Balsa to San Ignacio, Peru - Border Crossing From Ecuador To Peru

Peru travel blog by Mark Berman - August 2011   » View Photoset (19 Photos)

Mark Berman, South America backpacker for 10yrs!

International Bridge

Of the 3 border crossings I have done between Peru and Ecuador, La Balsa is the most remote and isolated, but it's scenic, adventurous and fun. I came
Peru Photo - Border crossing to Ecuador at La Balza.
Border crossing to Ecuador at La Balza.
from Zumba after being in Vilcabamba in Ecuador and travelled 1hr down to Pucapamba at the border, then did passport formalities and walked over the bridge across the Rio Blanco to La Balsa. After finding the policeman in La Balsa for a passport stamp, I took a shared taxi to San Ignacio which took 1hr 20mins. It's an unsealed road but it's not rubble and there is lovely scenery along the way. I really knew I was in Peru again when I saw a motortaxi on the side of the road. We passed through a couple of small villages along the way called Namballe and Linderos before arriving in San Ignacio, a typical Peruvian crazy-town.

La Balsa

The intension was to stay a night, have a quick look around and head south to Chachapoyas the next day. San Ignacio is a place buzzing with motortaxis and street activity. You might see a man with his monkey on a street corner performing tricks. I visited the park, saw a few monuments and bought some supplies
Peru Photo - Woman with basket standing on globe, monument in San Ignacio.
Woman with basket standing on globe, monument in San Ignacio.
from the local market. The plaza has a monument of an indigenous man holding up a dove sitting beside a polar bear. A traffic round-about has a monument of an indigenous woman with a basket standing upon a globe. Nearby is the local sports stadium with a monument of 2 soccer players outside. The stadium is not far from the bus companies that leave San Ignacio to various destinations. Here is the official government website of San Ignacio, in Spanish.

To Chachapoyas

It was a full days travel from here to Chachapoyas for me the next day. The story of the journey from San Ignacio to Chachapoyas.

     

View all photos in the La Balsa to San Ignacio Photoset


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Distances & times (if available) from about halfway from La Balsa to San Ignacio (Peru) to:


Map location: La Balsa to San Ignacio, Peru. Of the 3 border crossings I have done between Peru and Ecuador, La Balza is the most remote and isolated, but it's scenic, adventurous and fun! This is one way of entering Peru from Ecuador!
 A : Vilcabamba to Zumba - Ecuador 56 kms 56 kms straight distance | 2hrs 42mins 2hrs 42mins by car (110 kms) | 3hrs 14mins 3hrs 14mins by bus (110 kms) (110 kms)
 B : San Ignacio to Chachapoyas - Peru 67 kms 67 kms straight distance | 2hrs 52mins 2hrs 52mins by car (153 kms) | 3hrs 26mins 3hrs 26mins by bus (153 kms) (153 kms)
 C : Vilcabamba - Ecuador 101 kms 101 kms straight distance | 3hrs 59mins 3hrs 59mins by car (183 kms) | 4hrs 46mins 4hrs 46mins by bus (183 kms) (183 kms)
 D : Loja - Ecuador 129 kms 129 kms straight distance | 4hrs 53mins 4hrs 53mins by car (227 kms) | 5hrs 51mins 5hrs 51mins by bus (227 kms) (227 kms)
 E : Chachapoyas - Peru 170 kms 170 kms straight distance | 4hrs 47mins 4hrs 47mins by car (263 kms) | 5hrs 44mins 5hrs 44mins by bus (263 kms) (263 kms)
 F : Zamora - Ecuador 120 kms 120 kms straight distance | 5hrs 58mins 5hrs 58mins by car (277 kms) | 7hrs 9mins 7hrs 9mins by bus (277 kms) (277 kms)
 G : Ecuador (Macara) to Sullana to Piura - Peru 88 kms 88 kms straight distance | 8hrs 10mins 8hrs 10mins by car (393 kms) | 9hrs 48mins 9hrs 48mins by bus (393 kms) (393 kms)
 H : Leymebamba to Celendin - Peru 217 kms 217 kms straight distance | 7hrs 53mins 7hrs 53mins by car (416 kms) | 9hrs 27mins 9hrs 27mins by bus (416 kms) (416 kms)
 I : Cajamarca - Peru 229 kms 229 kms straight distance | 9hrs 50mins 9hrs 50mins by car (428 kms) | 11hrs 48mins 11hrs 48mins by bus (428 kms) (428 kms)
 J : Cuenca - Ecuador 250 kms 250 kms straight distance | 8hrs 11mins 8hrs 11mins by car (432 kms) | 9hrs 49mins 9hrs 49mins by bus (432 kms) (432 kms)
 K : Huaquillas - Ecuador 230 kms 230 kms straight distance | 8hrs 49mins 8hrs 49mins by car (449 kms) | 10hrs 34mins 10hrs 34mins by bus (449 kms) (449 kms)
 L : Machala - Ecuador 237 kms 237 kms straight distance | 8hrs 57mins 8hrs 57mins by car (457 kms) | 10hrs 44mins 10hrs 44mins by bus (457 kms) (457 kms)
 M : Piura to Tumbes - Peru 191 kms 191 kms straight distance | 8hrs 13mins 8hrs 13mins by car (498 kms) | 9hrs 51mins 9hrs 51mins by bus (498 kms) (498 kms)
 N : Cajabamba - Peru 294 kms 294 kms straight distance | 12hrs 29mins 12hrs 29mins by car (549 kms) | 14hrs 58mins 14hrs 58mins by bus (549 kms) (549 kms)
 O : Mancora - Peru 256 kms 256 kms straight distance | 10hrs 17mins 10hrs 17mins by car (659 kms) | 12hrs 20mins 12hrs 20mins by bus (659 kms) (659 kms)
Driving times are accurate but approximate and are listed in the order of driving distance! Drive times are always affected by weather conditions, the terrain, time of day, altitude, dinner and bathroom stops, animals on the road, protests, a fast or slow bus driver, police checkpoints, border and river crossings, dropping off and picking up passengers etc. These drive times are obtained from Google Maps and are meant as a guide. Note however, times quoted in the main text of this page are exactly as the author experienced it.


My Hostel & Hotel Reviews for La Balsa to San Ignacio, Peru:

La Posada, San Ignacio, Peru - Large Photo
La Posada, San Ignacio, Peru (August 2011 - 1 night) - A fairly basic room, a bit shabby, not entirely private with its see-through curtains. The shower leaked water into the bedroom. OK for 1 night.

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