How to Cross the Peru-Brazil Border at Iñapari/Assis
For months, we were sure that our next stop after Peru would be Bolivia. There’s a very popular border crossing through Lake Titicaca, and we knew it would be very straightforward (if we put aside all the visa arrangements for Israelis). A sudden change of plans (we wanted to visit Lençóis Maranhenses in the North of Brazil at the right season) required us to travel to Brazil first. This meant we needed to find the closest border crossing from Cusco, Peru to Brazil. Searching the internet revealed very little information, so we had to come up with our own plan. A few Peruvians suggested that we take a bus to Puerto Maldonado, and from there go to the Iñapari/Assis Peru-Brazil border.
If you need to cross the Peru-Brazil border, here is the step-by-step guide:
- There are a few bus companies that go to Puerto Maldonado. We took Cruz Del Sur’s bus from Cusco at 21:00 for 80 soles (there were a few cheaper seats, but they were sold out). The bus ride took almost 9 hours.
- Once at Puerto Maldonado’s terminal, go outside and ask one of the mototaxi (rickshaw) drivers to take you to the buses that go to Iñapari/Assis (mumbling “bus Iñapari” should be sufficient). There’s a specific block with lots of minibuses that are headed towards the border. The mototaxi ride takes about 5 minutes and costs 6 soles.
- The drive to Iñapari/Assis takes around 3-4 hours and should cost 30-35 soles. Make sure to ask for the price BEFORE you get into the minibus. The driver will stop at the immigration on both the Peruvian and Brazilian sides, wait for you to get stamped, then take you to Assis (the small border town on the Brazilian side) and drop you off right next to the taxi and bus station.
- If you need to exchange soles with reals, there’re a few exchange places on the Peruvian side, right in front of the immigration.
As we were headed to São Luís- the very north of Brazil- our journey did not end here. We decided to catch a flight from Porto Velho to São Luís in order to save us days of bus riding.
In Assis, we were told that we had to get to Rio Branco, and from there take a bus to Porto Velho.
- Our choices were to either wait for an hour for a bus to Brasiléia, and then wait another four hours for a bus to Rio Branco, or to take two taxis- one to Brasiléia and another from Brasiléia to Rio Branco. Being quite impatient, we decided to go with the taxis. If you decide the same, make sure the price you’re given is for all of the passengers, as the taxi drivers tend to give you the price per person. We paid 40 soles/person from Assis to Brasiléia (about a 1-2 hour drive) and 70 soles/person from Brasiléia to Rio Branco (about 3 hours).
- The driver dropped us off at the main bus station in Rio Branco, from which you can take buses to many different cities, including Porto Velho.
All in all, it’s quite a long journey, but easier than it seems.
– Iris & Roi
If you have any questions about the Peru-Brazil border crossing, feel free to ask us in the comments 🙂