Chickem bus from Xela to Tapachula

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Chickem bus from Xela to Tapachula

Post by katerina » Mon Jul 05, 2010 8:29 pm


does anybody know if it's possible to take a chicken bus from Xela to Tapachula? If so, do you know the price and where the bus leaves from Xela?

thank you for your help

Christopher Gray
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Re: Chickem bus from Xela to Tapachula

Post by Christopher Gray » Tue Jul 06, 2010 12:56 pm

katerina wrote:does anybody know if it's possible to take a chicken bus from Xela to Tapachula? If so, do you know ... where the bus leaves from Xela?
I don't know of any direct bus. Buses for Reu or Coatepeque leave from Minerva terminal. If you arrive late in Reu, there are inexpensive hotels within half a block from where you got off the bus. In Retalhuleu or Coatepeque there will be chicken buses to Mexican border waiting for you already, or you can wait for a first class bus. At the border, there are passenger tricycles to take you across a long bridge crossing the Suchiate river. If you see rafts instead, you are just a few blocks away. Ask your money changer to point you in the right direction. Keep Q15 to pay the fee for your exit stamp. The price is higher in foreign money. I think the tricycle drivers will accept any currency. On Mexican side, they have a nice air-conditioned ticket office with restrooms rather than paying the fare on the bus to Tapachula.

There is another, more scenic, route via San Marcos instead of the above coastal route. It has been a long time since I went that way. I seem to remember it making a lot of stops for passengers including uniformed high school kids going home from school.

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Re: Chicken bus from Xela to Tapachula

Post by allobrogica » Sun Jul 25, 2010 12:42 pm

We just took the Xela-Columba-Coatepeque route yesterday. When you arrive in Coatepeque, there are usually micro busses waiting to take you to the border at Tecun Uman. We literally filed out of the chicken bus and right into a micro. Q16 Xela-Coatepeque (2-2.5 hrs). Q7 Micro to Tecun Uman (30 min). We didn't see chicken busses to Tecun in Coatepeque, but I guess others say they exist.

Our return trip was actually faster (2 hrs Coatepeque-Xela). However, people should know that the last bus from Coatepeque to Xela is at 5pm. A Gautemalan friend in Xela had told us there was a later one, but it no longer exists (the locals in Coatepeque said the last one now is 5pm-ish, maybe 5:30 not clear). So we missed the return bus, couldn't find other affordable travel back (6:30pm-ish), and had to stay the night in Coatepeque. We stayed at a nice hotel behind the Paiz near the major bus intersection. It was expensive, but it was dark and we weren't about to try searching for something cheaper (not a great neighborhood). We paid Q110/per person. It's called Mansion Residencial. Directions: Walk to Paiz/mall from the bus intersection and go to the first street after Paiz. Turn right, walking along the parking lot for Paiz/the mall. Keep going for two longish blocks. You'll see the name of the place on a wall and then a school. Keep walking since the entrance is actually on the next street. Take a left at the first street after the school, walk 1/2 block. The hotel is on your left. Note that there is a church next door that may or may not have fairly loud services/singing well into the night (midnight). Not sure if it was some kind of holiday last night or what.

Perhaps other have tips for cheaper places to stay in Coatepeque in other cases of missed busses.

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Re: Chickem bus from Xela to Tapachula

Post by xelawho? » Sun Jul 25, 2010 1:18 pm

There are a couple of decent hotels near the central park in Coatepeque, on 6a Calle - the Europa and the Baechli. They're both a little cheaper than the one you mention and nothing fancy - they're about as charming as Coatepeque itself... ie, not. But the area is a good one to stay in as most of the places to eat in Coatepeque are around the plaza and the city is not a great place to be wandering around after dark.

To get to the park from the bus intersection you just keep going straight up the hill - I'm pretty sure it's on the same street, or maybe one block over. It's definitely walking distance, or a very short taxi ride. Quetzaltenango's leading culture & nightlife magazine
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