Paraguay

Asunción listings

Sleeping

The hotel bill does not usually include a service charge. Look out for special offers.

Asunción

$$$
Granados Park
, Estrella y 15 de Agosto, T497921, www.granadospark.com.py. Luxury, top quality hotel, range of suites with breakfast, all facilities, WiFi, good restaurant
Il Mondo
.

$$$
Hotel Casino Yacht y Golf Club Paraguayo
,
14 km from town, at Lambaré, on own beach o
n the Río Paraguay, T906121, www.hotelyacht.com.py. 7 restaurants and cafés, super luxury, with pool, gym, spa, golf, tennis, airport transfers; many extras free, special deals.

$$$
Sabe Center
, 25 de Mayo y México, T450093, www.sabecenterhotel.com.py. Luxury hotel in modern tower, with all facilities, discounts available.

$$$
Excelsior
, Chile 980, T495632, www.excelsior.com.py. Luxurious, stylish, gym, pool, tennis, internet, cell phone rental, bar and restaurant.

$$$-$$
Cecilia
, Estados Unidos 341 y Estigarribia, T210365, www.hotelcecilia.com.py. Comfortable suites, breakfast included, weekend specials, internet, good restaurant,
La Preferida
(RRR), pool with a view, sauna, gym, airport transfers, parking, medical service.

$$
Aspen Apart Hotel
, Ayolas 581 y Gral Díaz, T496066, www.aspen.com.py. Modern, lots of marble, 50 suites and apartments, with breakfast, pool, sauna, gym, internet, cheaper longer stays.

$$
Chaco
, Caballero 285 y Estigarribia, T492066, www.hotelchaco.com.py. Central 1970s hotel, with breakfast, parking nearby, rooftop swimming pool, WiFi internet, bar, good restaurant (RRR)

$$
Paramanta
, Av Aviadores del Chaco 3198, T607053, www.paramanta-hotel.com. 4-star, mid-way between airport and centre, buses stop outside, with breakfast, TV, WiFi internet, bar, restaurant, pool, gym, gardens, and many other services. English and German spoken.

$$
Asunción Palace
, Colón 415 y Estrella, T492151, www.geocities.com/aphotel. Historic building dating from 1858. 24 rooms, with breakfast, a/c, TV, fridge, very helpful, elegant, laundry, internet.

$$
Bavaria
, Chóferes del Chaco 1010, T600966, www.bavaria.f2s.com. Comfortable, colonial style, beautiful garden, pool, a/c, good value rooms and suites with kitchens, TV, fridge, German spoken, very helpful staff.

$$
El Lapacho
, República Dominicana 543, casi Av España, T210662. Family-run, welcoming, comfortable, a bit run down, rooms available at lower prices. Favourite with backpackers and students. Convenient for local services, 10 mins from centre by bus, pool, 24-hr internet, parking.

$$
Hotel Westfalenhaus
, Sgto 1° M Benítez 1577 C Stma Trinidad, T292374, www.paraguay-hotels.com. Comfortable, German-run, breakfast included, half board, weekly rates and self-catering apartments available, with pool, Wi-Fi, safe deposit box, a/c, international restaurant,
Piroschka
, gym, massage and spa, English, German and Spanish spoken.

$$
Amalfi
, Caballero 877 y Fulgencio R Moreno y Manuel Domínguez, T494154, www.hotel amalfi.com.py. Modern, comfortable, spacious rooms, breakfast included, internet and restaurant. Recommended.

$$
City Hotel
, Humaitá 209 y NS de la Asunción, T491497, www.cityhotel.com.py. A/c, good, with breakfast in City Cafetería in lobby.

$$
Gran Armele
, Palma 999 y Colón, T444455, www.hotelarmele.com.py. With breakfast, a/c, gym, sauna, restaurant, pool, large hotel used by tour groups.

$$
Plaza
, Eligio Ayala 609 y Paraguarí, T444772, www.plazahotel.com.py. Discounts available, a/c, basic, luggage stored, with breakfast, restaurant.

$$
Portal del Sol
, Av Denis Roa 1455 y Santa Teresa, T609395, www.hotelportaldelsol.com. Comfortable hotel with breakfast, some rooms sleep 4, free airport pick-up and internet, pool.

$
La Española
, Herrera 142 y F Yegros, T449280. Central, comfortable, breakfast included, a/c, internet access, credit cards accepted, airport pickup, laundry, luggage storage, restaurant, parking. Recommended.

$
Cardel
, Ygurey 1145 and Av Dr. Eusebio Alaya, T/F214586, cardel@highway.com.py. Halfway between bus station and centre of town, breakfast included.

$
Residencial Itapúa
, Fulgencio R Moreno 943, T445121. Breakfast available at small cost, a/c, cheaper with fan, kitchen for drinks and snacks, no cooking, quiet, comfortable.

Near the bus terminal

$
Adelia
, Av F de la Mora y Rep Argentina y Lapacho, T553083. With breakfast, modern, TV a/c.

$
Yasy
, Av F de la Mora 2390, T551623. A/c and TV, cheaper with fan; both are overpriced.

Many more behind these in Calle Dolores.

Out of the city: San Lorenzo

Estancia Oñondivemi
, Tourism farm, Km 27.5 on Ruta 1 just past the turn off to Ruta 2 at San Lorenzo, 30 mins from Asunción, T0295-20344, www.onondivemi.com.py. A pleasant escape from the city. Serves all meals, food organically grown on site. Horse riding, fishing, swimming, nature walks (they have a nearby property with a waterfall, lovely for swimming), attractive accommo dation with a/c. Contact for prices (includes meals).

Camping

If camping, take plenty of insect repellent. The pleasant site at the
Jardín Botánico
is US$2.50 pp plus tent, cars also permitted, cold showers and 220v electricity, busy at weekends.

You can camp at rear of
Restaurant Westfalia
, Av Perón y Av F Bogado, T331772, hotelrestaurant westfalia@hotmail.com. Owner
speaks English, French, German, knowledgeable, US
$1 per night for car, showers, laundry, noisy, animals. Take Av General Santos, towards Lambaré. Restaurant Westfalia is 5 km from Asunción (bus 19, 23 or 40).

EatingAsunción

Many restaurants are outside the scope of the map. A few restaurants close at weekends, but may open at night. A good meal in the food halls at the shopping malls, which you pay for by weight, as you do in some of the city centre restaurants, is about US$3.25. Average price of a good meal in quality restaurants: US$18. The following are open most days of the week, day and night.

RRR
Acuarela
, Mariscal López casi San Martín, T601750. Very good churrascaría and other Brazilian dishes.

RRR
Bistro
, 15 de Agosto y Estrella. Excellent, US$25.

RRR
Bolsi
, Estrella 399 y Alberdi, T491841. One of Asunción's longest-operating eateries. Enormously popular. Wide choice of wines, good for breakfast, excellent food (Sun 1200-1430) in large servings. Has great diner next door, lower prices, also popular.

RRR
Churrasquería Sajón
, Av Carlos A López, bus 26 from centre. Good Paraguayan harp/ guitar group; restaurant serving meat.

RRR
Fabio Rolandi's
, Mariscal López y Infante Rivarola, T610447. Delicious pasta, steak and fish. Recommended.

RRR
Fina Estampa
, Senador Long 789 y Tte Vera, T601686, www.finaestampa.com.py. Peruvian food. Good Sun lunch buffet.

RRR
La Pergola Jardín
, Perú 240 y José Bergés, T214014. Under the same ownership as Bolsi, excellent.

RRR
Le Saint Tropez
, México entre Cerro Corrá y 25 de Mayo, T441141. Beautiful setting. Bar and restaurant, pizzería, open for lunch and dinner. Premises for sale (2008), so call ahead.

RRR
Mburicao
, González Rioboó 737 y Chaco Real, T660048. Mediterranean food. Highly recommended.

RRR
Oliver's
, Hotel Presidente, Azara e Independencia Nacional, T494941. Very good, pricey, live music.

RRR
Shangrilá
, Aviadores del Chaco y San Martín, T661618. Very good food at upmarket Chinese.

RRR
Sukiyaki
, in Hotel Uchiyamada, Constitución 763 y Luis A de Herrera, T222038. Good Japanese, about US$12 pp.

RRR
Taberna Española
, Ayolas 631 y General Díaz, T441743. Spanish food, very good.

RR
Dali
, Estrella 695 y Juan E. O' Leary, T490890, http://cafedali.info. Snack-bar-style eatery. Good Italian (and other) food, nice terrace. Recommended.

RR
Hacienda Las Palomas
, Guido Spano y Senador Long 644, T605111. Mexican food, popular.

RR
Hiroshima
, Chóferes del Chaco 1803 y Av Moreno, T662945. Authentic Japanese.

RR
Lido Bar
, Plaza de los Héroes, Palma y Chile, T446171. An institution in Asunción, great location across from Panteón, loads of character. Good for breakfast, empanadas and watching the world go by. Good quality and variety, famous for fish soup, delicious. Open daily 0700-2300, very popular. Recommended.

RR
San Roque
, Eligio Ayala y Tacuary, T446015. Traditional, relatively inexpensive.

RR
-
R
Paulista Grill
, San Martín casi Mariscal López, T662185, www.paulistagrill.com.py. Another good churrascaría, good value, cheaper in the week, popular with groups.

R
El Cheff Peruano
, General Garay 431 y Del Maestro, T605756, www.elchefperuano.com. Good quality Peruvian food, also popular with large groups.

R
El Mirasol
, 25 de Mayo 241, entre Yegros e Iturbe. Vegetarian and Chinese, open till 1600 for buffet lunch, closed Sun.

R
La Vida Verde
, Palma 634 y 15 de Agosto, T446611. Vegetarian, Chinese influenced, with buffet lunch, open till 1700, closed Sun.

R
Tapei
, Tte Fariña 1049 y Brasil y Estados Unidos, T201756. Serves stylish vegetarian by weight. Recommended.

R
Tembi'u he
, Dr Francisco Fernández y Av Stma Trinidad, T293324. Paraguayan food.

Cafés and snacks

Most cheap lunch places close around 1600.

Café Literario
, Palma casi México, T491640. Mon-Fri from 1600, cosy café/bar, books and good atmosphere. Occasional cultural events with Alianza Francesa.

El Molino
, España 382 y Brasil, T225351, www.confiteriaelmolino.com. Good value, downstairs for sandwiches and homemade pastries, upstairs for full meals in a nice setting, good service and food (particularly steaks) but pricey. Recommended.

Estrella
, Estrella y 15 de Agosto. Pizza,
empanadas
.

Heladería París
, 3 locations: Brasilia y Siria, San Martín y Pacheco and NS de Asunción y Quinta Avenida. Café/bar/ice cream parlour. Popular.

La Flor de la Canela
, Tacuary 167 y Eligio Ayala, T498928. Cheap Peruvian lunches.

Metropol
, Estados Unidos 341 y 25 de Mayo,
T202222, www.hotelcecilia.com.py/mp/menu.php. C
afé and shop with European food, sandwiches, cheese and meats. Part of
Hotel Cecilia
.

Michael Bock
, Pres Franco 828, T495847. Excellent bread and sweet shop.

Quattro D
(4d), San Martín y Dr Andrade, T497604. Ice cream parlour offering great range of flavours, also weekday lunches from US$1.85.

Sugar's
, several branches including most Shopping Centres and Brasilia 662.

Bars and clubsAsunciónBars

Paseo Carmelitas, Av Espana y Malutin, tiny but upscale mall has several popular bars, such as
El Bar
,
Kamastro
,
Kilkenney Irish Pub
,
Liquid
and the very chic
Sky Resto & Lounge
(T600940, www.skylounge.com.py) as well as restaurants and shops.

Austria Pub
, Austria 1783 y Viena, T604662, and in Mall Excelsior. German run, brews own beer, popular. Recommended.

Britannia Pub
, Cerro Corá 851, T443990, www.britannia-pub.com. Evenings only, closed Mon-Tue, good variety of drinks, German spoken, popular expat hangout, book exchange.

Café Bohemia
Senador Long 848 casi España, T662191. Original decor and atmosphere, Mon and Tue live blues/jazz.

Déjà Vu
, Galería Colonial, Av España casi San Rafael, T615098. Popular.

Refuel
, Galería Colonial, Av España casi San Rafael. Yet another popular bar, more upscale than most and with live music nightly.

Clubs

The best online source for clubs in Asunción, Ciudad del Este and anywhere else in Paraguay is
AsunFarra
, www.asunfarra.com.py.

Av Brasilia has a collection of clubs such as
Arena & Café,
Ristretto Café & Bar
(No 671 y Siria, T224614) and
Mouse Cantina
(No 803 y Patria, T 228794).

Asunción Rock
, Mariscal Estigarribia 991 y Estados Unidos, T442034. Wed-Sat, 2200 till late. 2 dance floors, rock and alternative music.

Coyote Night & Fun
, Sucre casi Av San Martín, T622816, www.coyote.com.py. Fri, Sat. Several dance floors and bars, retractable roof, affluent crowd. Recommended.

El Sitio Disco
, Av Rep Argentina 1035 y McMahon, T612822. Latin and retro, Fri-Sat, 2100 till 0300.

Face's
, Av Mariscal López 2585 (technically in Fernando de la Mora), T671421/672768, www.faces.com.py. Also in Ciudad del Este. Largest club in Paraguay, shows nightly.

Glam
, Av San Martin 1155 y Agustín Barrios, T331905, www.glam.com.py. Along with Coyote and Face's , one of
Asunción's most popular clubs. Thu, Fri and
Sat. Same owners as
Caracol Club
, Av Perón y Concepción Yegros, T332848, www.caracol.com.py.
El
ectronic music, several dance floors, 20 mins' drive from centre.

Pirata Bar
, Benjamín Constant y Ayolas, T452953, www.piratabar.com.py. Fri-Sat, 2100 till 0300.

Trauma
, 25 de Mayo y Antequera y Tacuary. Gay/transvestite/mixed, Fri, Sat, 2300.

EntertainmentAsunciónCinema

Cinema programmes are given in the press; latest releases, admission US$4 (Wed and matinées half price). Modern cinemas at:
Shopping del Sol
, 6 screens,
Shopping Villa Mora
6 screens, and
Mall Excelsior
,
Hiperseis
.
Centro Cultural de la Ciudad
, Haedo 347, T442448, for quality foreign films, US$1.50.

Theatre

Various Cultural centres also put on theatrical productions. For online listings, check
ABC Digital
(www.abc.com.py),
Última Hora
(www.ultimahora.com) and
La Nación
(www.lanacion.com.py).
Teatro Municipal
, Alberdi y Presidente Franco, T445169. Restored 2007. Ticket sales Mon-Sat 0800-2200.
Banco Central
, T6192243, the Paraguay Philharmonic gives monthly recitals May-Dec.
Teatro de las Américas
, J Bergés 297, concerts are given here.

Festivals and eventsAsunción

Two weeks in
Jul
,
Expo
, an annual trade show at Mariano Roque Alonso, Km 14.5 on the Trans- Chaco Highway, www.expo.com.py. The biggest fair in the country with local and international exhibitors. Bus from centre takes 30 mins.

ShoppingAsunciónBookshops

'Books'
, at Shopping del Sol and Mariscal López 3971, also opposite Villa Morra shopping centre, very good for English books, new titles and classics.
El Lector
at Plaza Uruguaya y 25 de Mayo, T491966, also at San Martín y Austria, T614256 (has café and internet connection), www.ellector.com.py. Has a selection of foreign material and a range of its own titles on Paraguay, including the beautiful
Paraguay Porã
album.
Librería Alemana
, Av Luis A de Herrera 292, warmly recommended for German books.
Librería Internacional
, Oliva 386, Estrella 723 and Palma 595. Good for maps, indigenous cultures; sometimes sponsors concerts and recitals in stores.

Camping

Camping 44
, Av Artigas 2061, T297240, www.camping44.com.py;
Gauchito Deportes
, Av Fernando de la Mora 2477 y Cedro, T555953, or
Unicentro
, Palma y 15 de Agosto.

Crafts

Check the quality of all handicrafts carefully, lower prices usually mean lower quality. Many leading tourist shops offer up to 15% discount for cash; many others will not accept credit cards, so ask even if there are signs in window saying they do. For leather goods there are several places on Colón and on Montevideo including:
Boutique Irene
, No 463;
Boutique del Cuero
, No 329; and
Galería Colón 185
(recommended). Also
La Casa del Portafolio
, Av Palma 302, T558228.

Artes de Madera
at Ayolas 222. Wooden articles and carvings.
Casa Overall 1
, Mariscal Estigarribia y Caballero, T448657, good selection. Also
No 2
at 25 de Mayo y Caballero, T447891.
Casa Vera
, Estigarribia 470, T445868, for Paraguayan leatherwork, cheap and very good.
Doña Miky
, O'Leary 215 y Pres Franco, recommended.
Folklore
, Mariscal Estigarribia e Iturbe, T/F494360, good for music, woodcarvings and other items.
Victoria
,
Arte Artesanía
, Iturbe y Ayala, T450148, interesting selection of wood carvings, ceramics etc. Recommended.

Electronic goods

Cheap electronic goods in the Korean-run shops.

Markets

Mercado Cuatro
on Pettirossi, a huge daily market selling food, clothing, electrical items, DVDs, CDs, jewellery, toys, is a great place to visit. Good, cheap Chinese restaurants nearby. There is a daily market on Av Dr Francia, best visited during the week.
Shopping Mariscal López
has a fruit and vegetable market, Tue, in the car park, and a small plant/flower market, including orchids, Wed, at the entrance.

Shopping centres

Asunción has a number of modern Shopping Malls with shops, ATMs, cafés, supermarkets, cinemas and
patio de comidas
all under one a/c roof.
Shopping Villa Morra
(Av Mariscal López y San Roque González).
Shopping Mariscal López
(Quesada 5050 y Charles de Gaulle, behind Shopping Villa Morra, T611272, www.mariscallopez.com.py).
Shopping del Sol
(Av Aviadores de Chaco y D F de González, T611780, www.delsol.com.py).
Mall Excelsior
(Chile y Manduvirá).

Supermarkets

Hiperseis
at Boggiani y Mariscal López;
Stock
at Shopping del Sol and Mall Excelsior.
Superseis
at Shopping Villa Morra;
Casa Rica
, Av San Martín y Aviadores del Chaco, good for speciality foods and some
European imports.
Real
, Boggiani y Av Argentina, has an imported food aisle, mainly USA.

Activities and toursAsunciónFootball

Asunción (technically next-door Luque) is the permanent home of the
South American Football Confederation
, CONMEBOL (www.conmebol.com), on the autopista heading towards the airport, opposite Ñu Guazú Park. This imposing building with its striking 'football' fountain houses offices, a hall of fame, extensive football library and a new museum with interactive exhibits, T494628 in advance for visits. See also
Asociación Paraguaya de Futbol
, www.apf.org.py.
Estadio Defensores del Chaco
, Mayor Martínez 1393 y Alejo García, T480120, is the national stadium,
hosting international, cup and major club matches.

Horse riding

Club Hípico Paraguayo
, Av Gral Andrés Rodríguez y Cleto Romero, Barrio Mariano Roque Alonso, T290921. Actually 9 different athletic clubs rolled into one; scene of many Asunción society events. Members club open to the public. US$55 per month but daily rates available. Friendly and helpful.

Rural tourism

Turismo rural
has become one of the most enjoyable ways to visit the country and get a feel for a Paraguayan way of life that revolves around agriculture and ranching. The
Touring y Automóvil Club Paraguayo
(25 de Mayo y Brasíl, p 2, T210550, www.tacpy.com.py) is officially in charge of rural tourism, through the
Paraguayan Rural Tourism Association
(APATUR) T210550-3, int 126-7, www.turismo rural.org.py, and its own travel agency,
Touring Viajes
. They organize visits to ranches and farms all over Paraguay. One-day tour prices start at about US$55 pp including accommodation, food and drink (not alcohol); tours of three or more days for groups of 2-12, US$60-125. All the ranches listed under APATUR have good facilities. Transport to and from these ranches from Asunción is sometimes included in the package. Visitors experience living and working on a ranch, can participate in a variety of activities, and enjoy typical food, horse riding, photo safaris and nature watching. Another agency for visiting
estancias
in Misiones Province only is
Emitur
, T0782-20286, T021-222081 or T0975-626780, and see www.paraguay.gov.py for a list of these and other ranches.

Tennis

Academia de Tenis
at Parque Seminario, 25 de Mayo y Kubicheck, T206379 to reserve a court. Price US$4 per hr daytime and US$5 per hr evening. Coaching available.

Tours

Many agencies offer day tours of the Circuito de Oro or Camino Franciscano (from US$50). Trips to local estancias, Encarnación and the Jesuit Missions, Itaipú and Iguazú or the Chaco region are all offered as 1, 2 or 4-day tours. Prices from US$100. Most agencies will also provide personalized itineraries on request. City tours also available. For more information contact
Dirección General de Turismo
or the
Paraguayan Association of Travel Agencies and Tourism
(ASATUR), Juan O'Leary 650, p 1, T491755/491728.

Alda Saguier
, Yegros 941, p 2, T446492. One of Paraguay's best guides, especially to Chaco and indigenous regions. English and German spoken.

Aries Travel
, Paraguari 743 y Herrera, T450473, ariestravel@emociones.org.py.

Canadá Viajes
, Rep de Colombia 1061, T2211192, www.canadaviajes.com.py. Good Asunción and Chaco tours.

Crucero Paraguay
, Perú 689 y Juan de Salazar, T232051, www.cruceroparaguay.info. Specialists in Chaco and Pantanal. Weekend cruises on the Río Paraguay on luxury river boat, pool, cinema, bar, restaurant.

Inter Tours
, Perú 436 y España, T211747, www.intertours.com.py. One of Paraguay's biggest full-service tour agencies. Tours to Chaco, Iguazú and Jesuit missions. Highly recommended.

Itra Travel
, Venezuela 663 y España, T200020, www.itra.com.py. Also offer ecotourism, national park tours.

Menno Travel
, Rep de Colombia 1042 y Brasil, T493504, mennotravel@gmx.net. German spoken.

Natura Express
, Cruz del Defensor 137 y Mariscal López, Villa Morra, T610353, www.natura- express.com. Adventure tourism, offering hiking, rappelling, kayaking, microlight flights, caving, riding and other activities, various packages.

Paraguay Natural
, Barka Viajes, Gral Santos y 18 de Julio, T302027, www.paraguaynatural.com.py. Specialists in nature tourism throughout the country and to Brazilian Pantanal.

Time Tours
, 15 Agosto y Gral Díaz, T449737, also at O'Higgins 891 y Austria in Villa Mora, T611649, www.timetours.com.py. Fluent English, runs Camino Franciscano tours. Recommended.

Vips Tour
, México 782 entre Fulgencio R Moreno y Herrera, T/F441199, www.vipstour.com.py. Asunción, estancia and Chaco tours.

t
Transport

AsunciónAir

Silvio Pettirossi Airport
, T645600. Several agencies have desks where you can book a taxi to your hotel, US$15-22. Bus 30 goes every 15 mins between the red bus stop outside the airport and Plaza de los Héroes, US$0.40, difficult with luggage. Minibus service from your hotel to airport run by
Tropical
, T424486, book in advance, US$8 (minimum 2 passengers, or pay for 2). The terminal has a tourist office (free city map and hotel information), bank (turn right as you leave customs - better rates in town), post office (0800-1800), handicraft shop, restaurant and several travel agencies who arrange hotel bookings and change money (very poor rates). Left luggage US$4.25 per day per item.

Bus

City buses
: Journeys within greater Asunción US$0.40. Buses are busy at rush hours. Turnstiles are awkward for large backpacks. Keep your ticket for inspection until you leave bus.

Long-distance
: The Terminal de Omnibus is south of the centre at República Argentina y Fernando de la Mora (T552154/551737). Local bus No 8 is the only direct one from Oliva, which goes via Cerro Corá and Av Brasil from the centre, and stops outside the terminal, US$0.40. From the terminal to the centre it goes via Av Estados Unidos, Luis A Herrera, Antequera and E Ayala; get off at Chile y Díaz. Other buses Nos 10, 25, 31, 38 and 80, follow very circuitous routes. Taxi to/from centre, recommended if you have luggage, US$3.35, journey time depends on the amount of traffic, about 30 mins. The terminal has a bus information desk, free city/country map, restaurant (quite good), café, casa de cambio (poor rates), post office, phone booths and shops. There are many touts for bus companies at the terminal. Allow yourself time to choose the company you want and don't be bullied, or tricked, into buying the wrong ticket. Main companies:
Nuestra Señora de la Asunción
, T551725 or 289 1000, www.nsa.com.py, has booking office at main terminal and at Mariscal Estigarribia y Antequera, off Plaza Uruguaya.
RYSA
, T444244, rysa1@supernet.com.py. Bus
company offices on the top floor are in 3 sections: short-distance, medium and long. Local departures, including for Yaguarón and Paraguarí from the basement. Hotels nearby: turn left from front of terminal, 2 mins' walk. Bus times and fares within Paraguay are given under destinations.

To Uruguay

EGA
(Eligio Ayala 693, T492473, www.egakeguay.com) runs to
Montevideo
3 times a week 20 hrs, US$52, as does
Brújula/Cynsa
(Pres Franco 995, T441720). The route is Encarnación, Posadas, Paso de los Libres, Uruguaiana, Bella Unión, Salto, Paysandú; the only customs formalities are at Bella Unión; passport checks here and at Encarnación.

To Argentina

There is a road north from Asunción (passing the Jardín Botánico on Primer Presidente) to a concrete arch span bridge (Puente Remanso - US$1.25 toll, pedestrian walkway on upstream side, 20 mins to cross) which leads to the border at Puerto Falcón
(about 40 km) and then to
Clorinda
in Argentina. The border is open 24 hrs; local services are run by
Empresa Falcón
to Puerto Falcón (US$0.60, every hr, last bus from Falcón to the centre of Asunción 1830; from Falcón to Clorinda costs US$0.40), but it is cheaper overall to book direct from Asunción to Argentina. Buses don't wait for you to go through formalities: wait for the same company's next bus, or buy a new ticket.

Buses to
Buenos Aires
(18 hrs) daily, many companies, via Rosario and Santa Fe (average fare US$53 luxury, US$39-43 diferencial, US$25- 31 común). To
Formosa
, 4 a day,
El Pulqui
and
Godoy
(US$5.30-6, plus US$0.50 luggage) many drug searches on this road. To
Salta
, take
Brújula
(T551664) at 0600, 0830, and other companies, to
Resistencia
, 8 hrs, US$9, then change (after long wait) to
La Veloz del Norte
.

To Brazil

Many Paraguayan buses advertise that they go to destinations in Brazil, when, in fact you have to change buses and book again at the frontier. Services to
Campo Grande
and
Corumbá
via Pedro Juan Caballero and Ponta Porã do not stop for immigration formalities. Check all details carefully.
Nuestra Señora de la Asunción
and and the Brazilian company
Pluma
(T551758) have direct services via Ciudad del Este to
Foz do Iguaçu
(Brazil), US$16.50-20, 5-7 hrs. Seat reservations recommended. To
Curitiba
, with
Pluma
and others, buses daily, 15½ hrs, US$47. To
Florianópolis
Catarinense
(T551738, Tue, Wed, Thu, Sat, Sun), 17 hrs, US$112 and
Pluma
(Mon, Wed, Fri), US$60. To
Porto Alegre
,
Uneleste
(T442679), Tue, Thu, US$56. To
São Paulo
,
Pluma
and
Brújula
, 20 hrs, US$60.
Pluma
to
Rio de Janeiro
, US$80;
Transcontinental
(T557369) to
Brasília
3 a week, US$89.

To Bolivia

Via the Chaco, to Santa Cruz,
Yacyretá
, T551725, most reliable, Mon, Wed, Fri, and Sat at 2000.
Stel Turismo
, T558196, daily at 2000,
Pycazú,
Thu and Sat at 2100, but you cannot get on in Mariscal Estigarribia. All fares US$55. All buses normally travel via Mariscal Estigarribia, for Paraguayan immigration where foreigners must get an exit stamp; La Patria; Infante Rivarola at the border; Ibibobo, for Bolivian immigration; and Villamontes, to Santa Cruz de la Sierra. Advertised as 21 hrs, the trip can take 5 days if the bus breaks down. Some food provided but take your own, plus extra water just in case; also take toilet paper. The buses can be very crowded. In summer the route can be very hot and dusty, but in winter, it can be cold at night. Alternative route to Bolivia via Salta, Argentina .

Unless specifically advertised, buses to Bolivia do not go through Filadelfia or the other Mennonite colonies, so take a local services from Asunción . After visiting the Chaco, you can usually get on a Bolivia-bound bus in Mariscal Estigarribia, where the bus companies have agents , but enquire in advance with their offices in Asunción.

River boat

To escape the city take a short trip across the river to the
Mbiguá Club
to sunbathe and relax. Ask at Aduanas for information. A small launch leaves every 20 mins from the pier at the bottom of Montevideo to
Chaco-i
, a strip of land between the Ríos Paraguay and Pilcomayo, US$0.65 each way. The Argentine town of Clorinda is just the other side of the Pilcomayo. Ferry to
Puerto Pilcomayo
(Argentina) about every 30 mins, US$0.65 (Argentine immigration closed at weekends for tourists).

Boats for
Concepción
leave from the bottom of Montevideo. Offices for information/prices El Paraguayo Independiente 813 y Ayolas (not always staffed). Sailings weekly (Wed), 27-30 hrs, US$22.50 1st class, US$14.25 2nd, US$6 deck space (not recommended). Sleeping space is sometimes available. Take food, water, toilet paper, warm clothes, sleeping bag and mosquito repellent. If you want more luxury take a 5-star cruise on the
Crucero Paraguayo
, Nuestra Sra de la Asunción 1102 e Ibáñez del Campo (Jejuí), T447710, www.crucero paraguay.info. 4-10 day cruises, visits historical and ecological sites along the river, on-board entertainment, international menu, pool and cinema. Reservations also available through larger tour operators.

Taxi

Minimum fare in Asunción : US$0.40, and US$0.08 per 100 m. The average journey costs about US$1.70. Minimum fare is about 30-50% more at night. Hire by the hr: minimum US$5, outside the city US$2 per km. There are many taxi ranks throughout the city.
Radiotaxi
recommended, T550116/311080.

Train

A
tourist steam train
runs from Estación Botánico, outside the Jardín Botánico, to Aregua and Sapucaí, Sun 1030, return 1930, US$22 for foreigners, US$6 for Paraguayans, price includes soft drink,
empanadas
and on-board entertainment (actors presenting 19th-century scenes); 4-hr stop in Aregua for lunch and sightseeing. Highly recommended. You can buy tickets on the day or in advance from Estación San Roque, Ayala y Plaza Uruguaya.

DirectoryAsunciónAirline offices

Aerolíneas Argentinas
, España 2220, T450577, arasugsa@sap.com.py.
AeroSur
, Senador Long 856 y España, T614743, www.aerosur.com.
Gol
, contact via webpage: www.voegol.com.br.
Iberia
, Mariscal López 995, T214246, asuuu@iberia.es.
LAB
, 14 de Mayo 563, ground floor, T441586, susklb@rieder.net.py.
Lan
, Juan de Salazar y Washington, T233487-9, www.lan.com.
Lufthansa
, N S de la Asunción 208, T447962, lhasu@cmm.com.py, admin and cargo only, ticket information from travel agents.
TAM
, Oliva 761 y Ayolas, T645500, www.tam.com.py.
United Airlines
, Mariscal López 310, T213019, viase@supernet.com.py.

Banks

Be careful to count money received from street money changers (Palma and surrounding area - their rates are poor when banks and cambios are closed). Lots of ATMs, accepting credit and debit cards, give dollars and guaraníes.
Lloyds TSB Bank
, Boggiani 5889 y Boquerón, p2, T664010, Palma y O'Leary, T419700, Av Mscal López y Av San Martín (and several other agencies in Greater Asunción). Accepts Visa.
Citibank
, CitiCenter, Av Mariscal López 3794 y Cruz del Chaco, T6202000. Will change Citibank TCs into US$ cash, and gives US$ cash on MasterCard credit card.
ABN AMRO
, Estrella 443 y Alberdi (main office), T419000, clientes@py.abnamro.com; also at Av San Martín
763 y Lillo, T611513; Eusebio Ayala y Mayor Bullo, T225854; and Shopping Mariscal López, T608977, accepts several cards.
Interbanco
, Oliva 349 y Chile, T494992, ATM at Shopping Del Sol, accepts Visa.
Amex
, at Inter-Express, Yegros 690 y Herrera, T490111, iexpress@interexpress.com.py.
To change TCs other than American Express you must go to Banco Santander, Banespa, Independencia Nacional y Moreno, good rates, proof of purchase required. Many
casas de cambio
on Palma, Estrella and nearby streets (open Mon-Fri 0730-1200, 1500-1830, Sat 0730-1200). All rates are better than at frontiers. They change dollars, euros, Brazilian reais, Argentine pesos and a few will accept sterling notes. Some
casas de cambio
change only dollar-denominated TCs.
Cambios Chaco
, on Palma and at Shopping Mscal López.
Maxi Cambio
, in Shopping del Sol. Good rates for dollars cash.
Parapiti Cambios/ Financiera Guaraní
, Palma 449, T490032, change Tcs (small fee). Mon-Fri 0830-1730, Sat 0830-1200.
Sudamérica Express
, 14 de Mayo 340, T445305, www.tupi.com.py, three other locations in capital. Decent rates for TCs.
Cambios Yguazú
, 15 de Agosto 451, T448018, no commission.

Car hire

Fast Rent a Car
, 15 de Agosto 558, T496054, www.fastrentacar.com.py. Good, helpful.
Only
,
15 de Agosto 520 y Olivia, T558228, also airport.

Cultural centres

Alianza Francesa
, Mariscal Estigarribia 1039 y Estados Unidos, T210503, www.alianzafrancesa.edu.py. Snack bar.
Centro Cultural Paraguayo Americano
, España 352 and Brasil y Estados Unidos, T224831, www.ccpa.edu.py. Has a good library (Mon-Fri 0900-2000, Sat 0900-1200, also has snack bar).
Centro Paraguayo-Japonés
,
Av Julio Corea y Domingo, T607276, www.centroparaguayo japones.
bl
ogspot.com. Has a good theatre.
Instituto Cultural Paraguayo Alemán
, Juan de
Salazar 310 y Artigas, T224455, www.icpa-gz.org.py. R
ecommended. All institutes have special events, films, etc.
Embassies and consulates
Argentina
, España y Boquerón, T212320, www.embajada-argentina.org.py. Visas issued at Edif Banco Nacional de Argentina, Palma 319, p1, T442151, open 0800-1300, 1500-1800, 2-hr service, photo needed (if you require a multiple entry visa, get it in your country of residence).
Austrian Consulate
, Aviadores del Chaco 1690, T613316, F613323. Mon-Fri 0730-1100.
Belgian Consul
, Daniel Ceuppens, Ruta 2, Km 17, Capiatá, T028-33326, F028-33327. Mon-Fri 1000-1400.
Bolivia
, Eligio Ayala 200, T203654, F210440. Mon-Fri
0900-1300.
Brazil
, Coronel Irrazabal y Eligio Ayala, T213534/214680, www.embajadabrasil.org.py,
open 0800-1400, Mon-Fri, US$25 for visa.
Canada
, Prof Ramírez 3 y Juan de Salazar, T227207. Mon-Fri 0800-1300.
Danish Consulate
, N S de la Asunción 766, T493617, F491539, Mon-Fri 0730-1130 and 1500-1830.
Dutch Consulate
, Artigas 4145, T 283665, F283664, Mon-Fri 0900-1600.
Finland
, Honourary Consulate, Capitán Elias Ayala 295 y Yasy, T291175 (the nearest embassy is in Brasilia).
France
, España 893 y Padre Pucheu, T212439, www.ambafran.gov.py, Mon-Fri 0800-1200.
Germany
, Av Venezuela 241,T214009, www.asuncion.diplo.de. 0800-1100 Mon-Fri.
Israel
, Yegros 437, Edif San Rafael, p8, T495097, F496355.
Italy
, Quesada 5871 y Bélgica, T615620, segreteria@cmm.com.py.
Japan
, Av Mariscal López 2364, T604616, F606901. Mon-Fri 0800-1200, 1500-1730.
Spain
, Yegros 437, p 5 y 6, T490686/7, F445394. Mon-Fri 0830-1300.
Swedish Consulate
, Perú y Artigas 1945, T215141, F215137. Mon-Fri 0730-1200, 1330-1730.
Switzerland
, O'Leary 409, p 4, of 423, T490848. 0800-1230 Mon-Fri.
UK
, Honorary Consulate, Eulogio Estigarribia 4846 y Monseñor Bogarin, T210405, guillermo.peroni@ pstbn.com.py, Mon-Fri 0800-1300 and 1500-1900, nearest Embassy in Buenos Aires.
Uruguay
, Guido Boggiani 5832 y Boquerón, p 3, T664244, F601335. Visas processed immediately if exit ticket from Uruguay, overland travel to Uruguay and onward country visas can be shown. Mon-Fri 0700-1730.
US Embassy and Consulate
, Av Mariscal López 1776, T/F213715. Mon-Fri 0730-1730.

Internet

Lots of internet cafés in and around Asunción. The average price is US$1 per hr.
Cyber Shop
, Estrella 480 and Alberdi y 14 de Mayo, T446290, helpful.
Interspace Internet
, 25 de Mayo y Antequera, T119190.
Patio de Luz Internet Café
, Azara 248, T449741. Also bar, restaurant, occasional live music. Internet near food hall in Shopping Villa Morra.
Unicom
, Papa Juan XXIII y Gómez (behind Shopping del Sol), T/F610902. Very helpful, fax and DVD rental.

Language schools

Idipar
(Idiomas en Paraguay), Manduvirá 979/963 y Colón, T447896, www.idipar.edu.py. Offers courses in Spanish or Guaraní. Private or group lessons available, also offers accommodation with local families and volunteer opportunities. 60 hrs per week from US$400 in groups, US$25 per hr for private lessons. Good standard.

Medical services

Private hospitals:
Bautista
, Av Argentina y Cervera, T600171/4.
Sanatorio San Roque
, Eligio Ayala y Pai Pérez, T212499/ 228700, 24 hrs. Public hospital:
Emergencias Médicas
, Brasil y FR Moreno, T204800/204715. Pharmacies: There are numerous pharmacies throughout Asunción, many offering 24-hr service.
Farmacia Vicente Scavone
, Palma y 15 de Agosto, T490396.
Farmacia Catedral Centro
, Palma e Independencia Nacional, Plaza de los Héroes. Both reliable.

Post offices

Alberdi, between Benjamín Constant y El Paraguayo Independiente, T498112. Mon-Fri 0700-2000, Sat 0700-1200.
Poste Restante
(ask at the Casillas section) charges about US$0.40 per item, but you may have to insist they double-check if you are expecting letters (poste restante closes 1100). Postcards for sale, but better ones in nearby bookshops. Packages under 2 kg should be handed in at the small packages window, over 2 kg at the 'Encomiendas' office in the same building, but on other end at corner of Alberdi and Benjamín Constant. A faster and more reliable way to send parcels is by EMS, the post office courier service from the same office. Customs inspection of open parcel required. Register all important mail. There are sub-offices at Shopping del Sol, Shopping Villa Morra and in certain suburbs, but mail takes longer to arrive from these offices.

Telephones

Information T112. Phone booths can be found on almost every block of central Asunción.
Copaco
, Azara y Alberdi, Gral Bruguez y M Domínguez and at Terminal de Omnibus, all for international calls and fax, 24 hrs.

Useful addresses

Immigration
: Eligio Ayala y
Caballero, T492908/446066.
Mennonite Centre
: Colombia 1090, T200697.
Police and emergencies
: T911. To report theft go to
Comisaria Tercera
, Chile y Colombia, and ask for
denuncio
form.

This is edited copy from Footprint Handbooks. For comprehensive details (incl address, tel no, directions, opening times and prices) please refer to book or individual chapter PDF
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