Driving the Pan-American Highway to Mexico and Central America 
by Christopher Howard
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Complete Guide for Do-It-Yourself Planning and Driving Through Mexico and Central America 
 
 
By Audrey Pritchard (Contributor), Raymond E. Pritchard, Chris Howard (Editor).

Mark McMahon, drove a four wheel drive from Tucson, Arizona all the way to the tip of South America. He's not the first to do it, but his reports of the trip are extremely inspiring and were featured on the website EscapeArtist.com.  He took his time, stopped where he wanted, and sometimes spent months exploring and photographing just one nation before proceeding to another.  In short, he made driving the Pan American Highway the adventure of a lifetime, and took him almost four very exciting and adventure-filled years to complete his journey. Arizona to Patagonia is a major undertaking. Surprisingly, as extremely impressive as that distance is, (over 6,000 miles as the crow flies, and more than double that figure when traveling circuitously along some the oddest highways and conditions imaginable) the trip from Arizona to Patagonia doesn't represent the complete Pan American highway - - and that is because the Pan American highway is said to start at Fairbanks, Alaska, not Tucson, Arizona. The Pan-American Highway system is as of this writing mostly complete and extends from Fairbanks to Quellón, Chile in South America, though no route is officially defined in Canada and the United States. The Pan-American Highway passes through many diverse climates and ecological types, from dense jungles to cold mountain passes. Since the highway passes through many countries, it is far from uniform. The most famous section of the Pan-American Highway which is the part covered in this report, is the Inter-American Highway, being the section between the United States and the Panama Canal. 

Mark McMahon and others who made the entire trip from the US border to the tip of South America are an inspiration to the rest of us.  But we don't have to make the entire trip.  The Inter-American Highway between the United States and the Panama Canal covers some magnificient country filled with Mayan ruins, pristine beaches, mountain peaks and tropical forests. This report will tell you how to make that trip. Look at this photograph of the Carribean Coast of Honduras to get an idea of the kind of country you'll be passing through.

" The updated eBook version of this guide  is the must have guide for anyone 
who is  thinking of driving through Mexico to Central America."
Mexico, Belize, Guatemala and Honduras - The ancient stone buildings in southern Mexico, Belize, Honduras and Guatemala always fascinate everyone who sees them. Often, in television specials for example, the Maya are discussed as if they no longer exist. "What happened to this culture?" is the classic rhetorical question. I want to start off by saying that the Maya, the name for a large heterogeneous group of related cultures in Mesoamerica, are very much alive and mostly well. Although the ancient Maya made many notable achievements-including rubberized rain clothing, barkless dogs, stingless honey bees, a most accurate calendar, a unique counting system including the concept of zero, and an excellent set of astronomical observations, it is the buildings that remain for all to see and to be amazed by.  Mayan Ruins are the truly astounding evidence of a long lasting, dynamic cultural tradition. The monuments paid tribute to the rulers of the past, and inscriptions inside are concerned with dynasties and conquests, alliance and raids. Some 10 square miles of central Tikal have been mapped revealing over 3000 separate constructions: Huge stones brought down by the rivers of the south coast served as the raw material for the carving of gigantic sculptures that have been found in this region.
Important Considerations
  • Best routes to take.
  • Maps. 
  • Border crossings - what to expect. 
  • Practical Spanish phrases for situations you will encounter. 
  • En route sightseeing. 
  • Details of actual trips and much more useful information...
  • Adventures That Will Create A Lifetime Of Memories
     The Pan-American Highway - An Opportunity To See Pre-Colombian History & History In The Making
    If you happen to be behind a slow moving vehicle and are anxious to pass, you might notice the driver turn on the left turn signal. He or she is signaling that, in his or her opinion, it is safe to pass. As you do so, it is considered courteous to honk a few times. Don’t be surprised, then, if when you are passed the driver honks at you! It is a friendly gesture intended to make sure you are aware of their passing and in no way should this be seen as a sign of hostility as in, “Out of the road, pinche slowpoke!”
    The purpose of this guidebook is to assist those wishing to drive to areas of Mexico and Central America. The United States was a sleeping giant in the l9th century. The railroads that were built across the country were the instrumental forces in its development. Mexico and Central America are being awakened from their slumber by the building of the Pan-American Highway. 

    In the future travel and a new ectourism will stride hand in hand with industry to create exciting and explosive new growth in this part of the world. This will lead to the development of new tourist meccas for vacationing North Americans and others. Furthermore, the present economy is forcing many retirees and senior citizens - living on fixed incomes - to seek more affordable housing and life-styles. Just like the birds facing the coming winter, they are turning to the South in ever greater numbers. 

    The massive numbers of automobiles in these countries assures proper road maintenance and complete service stations. These new stations are being equipped with stateside Circle K-type mini-marts and provide complete car care. 

    The past history of the Aztec and Mayan civilizations are here for us to rediscover. The greatest discovery we have in store, are the lovely and fascinating peoples of Mexico and Central America. With these things in mind, we have created this guidebook as an aid, so you can step out better prepared to enjoy this historical part of our Western Hemisphere. 
    DISCLAIMER - This guidebook is designed to offer the experiences and information that, hopefully, will assist the reader in preparing for and driving over the routes covered. It is sold with the understanding that CaribPro.com Inc. EscapeArtist.com Inc., the authors nor publisher cannot be responsible for any changes in laws, ratings, conditions or prices as stated herein. It is strongly recommended that the reader contact hotels and consulates before travelling to see if there have been any significant changes in the data we have provided in this book. - - CaribPro.com Inc, EscapeArtist.com Inc, the author and the publisher specifically disclaim any loss or risk incurred as a result of the information contained in this book, either directly or indirectly.
    Driving the Pan-American
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