We were worried that getting from Ometepe, Nicaragua to Liberia, Costa Rica would prove troublesome, but it wasn’t at all. Actually, all things considered, it went pretty quickly. Here’s how it’s done:
Step 1: If coming from Ometepe, take a taxi from the ferry in San Jorge to Peñas Blancas, La Frontera (the border). Our taxi driver picked up a random kid on our way to the border, but he ended up being a blessing in disguise, as he helped us through the whole process.
Step 2: When you arrive at the border, people will bombard you with immigration slips and ask for $1 USD. Fill out the two immigration slips and pay the cash.
Step 3: Continue walking, get your passport checked a few times, and pay a $1 USD foreign fee – what for, we have no idea.
Step 4: Go up to the desk on the Nicaraguan side and hand over your immigration papers and passports, here you will pay $2 for no apparent reason
5FT Tip: Bring small USD bills! The guy that helped us through the border was amazing and found me change for a $20, but make your life a little easier and bring small cash. It feels like you're throwing cash around, but the Nicaraguan side is just chaotic and unorganized.
Step 5: Walk one km in the scorching sun with your packs and cross into Costa Rica! The Costa Rican side is far more organized.
Step 6: Buy a bus ticket to your destination of choice. Not only did the unnamed surfer boy help us through the border, he even helped us get our $3 USD bus ticket to Liberia! Thanks to him, the border crossing was even more of a breeze.
Step 7: Head into the Costa Rican immigration office, say how long you’ll be staying, put your bags through security, hop on your bus, and off you go!
If faced with the decision to cross from Nicaragua to Costa Rica by foot, do it!