Since I have family in Ciudad del Este I went there last weekend, we took the route 2 or Ruta 2 that connects Asuncion with Ciudad del Este, it took around 4 hours and a half to get there, the way is pretty dangerous and on the way I saw all kind of things like people with babies and small children in motorcycles without helmets, teens jaywalking and crossing the route, small booths on the side of the streets selling all kinds of fruits and other small items.
I honestly hate the route, there is absolute not respect for the other drivers, its a no law route, you have to guess what the other driver is going to do, and if you are lucky enough the driver coming from the other direction wont enter your lane. Take the bus if you have to go to Ciudad del Este, don’t drive unless you are used to and know the way you should drive around here.
The last time I was in Ciudad del Este was years ago, and now I remember why I don’t visit it every year. It is a small growing city that most of its income comes from goods sold to the Brazilians, in Ciudad del Este you can find all kind of goods, huge malls with all kinds of stuff you can ever imagine, from original to counterfeit…from delicatessen to car accessories, from perfumes to laptops parts…everything you can possible imagine, you can find there. But always be careful there are many things of poor very poor quality, like for example: I bought a 32 gig pen drive that cost 40$ and lasted 24hours, it literally felt apart…there is no guarantees…you but knowing that I wont last, unless you shop in certain shopping that you know you will get an original quality at a higher price than the competence.
The stores in Ciudad del ESte open at 6 am and close very early at 3 pm and 4 pm in some places, it is a place where you go to shop, the stores never end, when you think you have done shopping then you see more and more and more malls full of stuff, it is endless.
For Perfumes I would recommend Monalisa, for Cellular phone in Jebai Center, for electronics and computers Lai Lai center, for computers Nave informatica and Compubras in Vendome Shopping.
To eat there is a fast food place on the 3rd floor of Shopping Americana at reasonable prices, Monalisa also has a caffe bar on the top level at New York City prices.
At the end I found better deals in Asuncion, since ciudad del Este makes more of its profit from Brazilians because things in Brazil are currently more expensive they still find it affordable to buy from Ciudad del Este, but for us that live in Paraguay I honestly find prices higher there then in Asuncion.
If you go to Ciudad del este, check Iguazu Falls out, and don’t forget to check out the Duty free zone (ZONA FRANCA) between Brazil and Argentina, check visa requirements to visit Brazil and Argentina if you are not living in the Mercosur area.
I went to 3 countries in less than 3 hours, it was amazing to visit Paraguay, Brazil and Argentina in the same day! That alone made the trip worthy!!!