There are several border crossings. This process can take between one and three hours depending on how crowded it is because of waiting in line, possible bag searches, buying legal stamps, making photocopies and attaining entry and exit stamps on both sides.
Bicyclists: be sure to have your necessary motorcycles' documentation.
Drivers with foreign plates: It is allowed to travel to Costa Rica with foreign cars with a 3 month vehicle-entry visa. Please talk with a representive at immigration to make sure you procure the appropriate paperwork and approval allowing your vehicle to leave Costa Rica.
To the north, border crossings are available via Penas Blancas along the Pacific Coast, just north of the city of La Cruz on the Pan American Highway. Twice a week one can also cross the Nicaraguan border via Los Chiles
- Penas Blancas open from 6 am - 10 pm (Mon - Fri); 6 am - 8 pm on Sat & Sun.
- Los Chiles open only Mo & Tue 3pm via San Carlos with a boats to/from Grenada across the lake of Nicaragua
To the south, border crossings are available via Paso Canoas close to the Pacific Coast
- Paso Canoas has the same hours of operation, 6 am - 10 pm (Mon - Fri); 6 am - 8 pm on Sat & Sun.
- Sixaola supposed to be open during the same office hours as Paso Canoas
Going into Nicaragua
$7 US at the Costa Rica immigration desk for exiting Costa Rica
$3 US at the Nicaragua immigration for entering Nicaragua
Going into Costa Rica
$1 US at Nicaragua gate for exiting Nicaragua
$0 US (yes, tourists are free) for entering Costa Rica
$1 US at the immigration desk.
$4 US at customs.
Bocas del Toro is the state on the Caribbean Coast of Panama bordering Costa Rica