Named after the ‘black rock’ (anthracite coal) found in the area, it is a modern city, with a complete infrastructure for businesses and tourists alike. Piedras Negras offers visitors a taste of Mexican culture, extending back as far as the Maya, Aztec and Olmec, as well as local artisan crafts and modern hotels and restaurants that can compete with the best.
The town’s main square is directly opposite the international bridge, so it’s not too long for visitors to be in the center of things. The square may look familiar, having featured in the 2007 movie No Country for Old Men – but then Piedras Negras is no stranger to the film industry with a number of other films, including 1993’s Like Water for Chocolate also filmed here.
Our Lady of Guadalupe Catholic Church is in the center of the town, cutting an imposing figure with tall spires that can be seen from across the Rio Grande. Originally built in 1859, it was remodeled in 1935 and construction of the towers began in 1950.
Very different from American life, Piedras Negras, is almost quaint – with pretty much all businesses closing between 2 and 4 pm for siesta. If you are visiting during these times, the plazas and parks provide beautiful gardens and fountains in which to while away an hour or two and simply relax in. The Macroplaza and the Plaza de las Culturas (Cultures Square) are popular, the latter particularly for its extensive cultural attractions including sculptures, and the Planetarium which houses a cafeteria and sells books, magazines and souvenirs.
Piedras Negras provides a tranquil setting for experiencing your dental care abroad. Particularly for travelers from Texas it proves to be a convenient, cost-effective option of getting high-quality dental care at a price that can save you as much as 70% on the costs at home.
Piedras Negras is in the northeast of the State of Coahuila, located on the Rio Grande and just over the US-Mexico border from Eagle Pass in Texas.
Obviously, convenience is one of the major attributes of Piedras Negras for those traveling in, not just from Texas, but from all over North America. It has an international airport and there are a number of other international airports within easy reach, both in Mexico and in Texas.
Piedras Negras has an old-fashioned type of charm as life here seems unhurried, but its dental and medical services are just as good as those over the border. In fact, dentists here are more than used to treating international patients, and they have the facilities, training and expertise that demonstrates to overseas clientele that they are as capable as their dentist at home.
It is not unusual for dentists in Mexico to do training in the US, and to join eminent professional organizations in the United States, such as the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry. For American patients in particular this is helpful in providing them with the reassurance that their treatment will meet the standards required by a US professional body.
Many patients are choosing to travel abroad for their dental care because of the enormous savings – some out of necessity, but some because it is an informed choice and they actually prefer to have their dental care abroad. While quality is the number one reason for traveling abroad, the accompanying savings on dental treatments are not to be sniffed at:
A Single dental crown in the US costs $1,150 compared to £250 in Piedras NegrasA Root canal in the US costs $2,200 compared to $500 in Piedras Negras.Dental implant and crown in the US costs $3,900 compared to $1,250 in Piedras Negras
(Image by: Mquirarte)
There are plenty of hotel options in Piedras Negras, as well as over the border in and around Eagle Pass or elsewhere in Texas.
The most recent US travel advisory makes the provision that while there are millions of US citizens who travel into Mexico every day without any safety issues, there are places where violent crime is a concern. The highways between Piedras Negras and Nuevo Laredo are a continuing concern and it isn’t recommended to travel along these routes.
If you are planning a trip be sure to check the most recent information from the US travel advisory, or your own country’s advice.
Long gone are the days when visiting a dentist in Mexico was considered to be risky because Mexican dentists aren’t as well-qualified; don’t have up-to-date facilities and use cheaper materials.
In these days of globalization where the same brands are seen in every major town and city throughout the world, it is becoming more the norm for dentists to have the same training and same best practices whether they are in Palm Springs, USA or Piedras Negras, Mexico.
That is not to say that dentists everywhere are reliable and great – as plainly they are not – and there are always the unscrupulous who will take advantage. The knack is finding one who you can rely on, which isn’t always that easy.
There are a number of things which you can identify that will give you a good indication of whether a particular dentist you have in mind is going to be trustworthy. This includes their qualifications, years in practice, specialization and professional memberships. If, for example, a dentist is a member of the American Dental Association (ADA), then you know they have to adhere to the same rules of practice as every other dentist who is a member of the ADA. If they don’t then this will lose their membership status.Some of this information may be quite difficult to come by, which is why Dental Departures can help. We do background checks on all our verified dentists, checking criminal and malpractice records, verifying qualifications and visiting clinics ourselves. We take high resolution photos and virtual tours of the clinics, and along with real patient reviews post this information on our website for patients to look at for free.
We give you the chance to check-out our dentists are make your own decision based on all the information to hand, so you can ‘look before you book’.
Warranties or guarantees are not something your dentist at home will necessarily have as standard – but with our dentists they are. All our dentists have guarantees or warranties on their work, and if something does go wrong it will be put right.
Happily, it is very uncommon for our patients to experience any problems – and of the few that have these have all been minor and easy to fix.
Our dentists’ warranties include their treatment and any materials they use – it does not include additional travel or accommodation expenses. If you want to have total peace-of-mind that all your expenses will be met should you have to travel back to your dentist in Piedras Negras, we recommend you take out additional low-cost insurance cover for any travel or accommodation costs you may incur.
Our dentists speak English well and so you won’t need to know any Spanish. You will also find that most border towns, because of their proximity to the US, have many English-speaking residents.
US Cash is accepted by our dentists, and other methods, such as bank transfers, credit/debit cards and personal/traveler checks accepted by many of them. You can find out how to pay your dentist by checking out the individual clinic listings on our website. There is usually a small processing fee of between 3 and 4% for credit card transactions..
Our dentists are not usually able to accept your dental insurance, but if your provider allows for ‘out-of-network care’, you may well be able to claim your expenses back once you have returned home. Be sure to bring any paperwork with you for your dentist in Piedras Negras to complete.
You can visit any time as our dentists are open all year round. You may have preferences on when to visit depending on what the weather is like. This part of the world has a semi-arid climate, which means it can get very hot in the summer – it can reach well over 100°F (38°C) – with average temperatures between May and September of between 79°F (26°C) and 88°F (31°C).
Our dentists are open all year round, and so anytime is good. We have a lot of visitors coming from North America to escape the winter cold so you may find it busier during those months.
Unfortunately, very little of Mexico consists of purpose built new towns where sidewalks are wide, smooth and accommodating and where you can get around and in and out of buildings with ease. Old Colonial cities with narrow cobbled streets, mountain villages and ancient ruins are not usually wheelchair friendly at all.
Piedras Negras is somewhere between the two, with some parts easier to get around in a wheelchair than others. Likewise, you will also find some hotels that are accessible, and others that are not.
What we will say is that we will always be able to get you to one of our dentists in Coahuila. All of them are wheelchair friendly and many offer pickup and drop-off services, either from your hotel, or the border, so you don’t have to worry about getting around. Give us a call on our toll-free number if you want to discuss your options or need any advice.
(Image by: Fernando Franciles)
The favored method of pain relief in Mexico is local anesthetic, rather than sedation dentistry which is commonplace at home. While it is not offered as standard in Mexico, many of our dentists will provide it, but you will need to arrange it in advance as the services of an anesthetist are required, which will incur an additional charge of around $400.
History lovers and shopaholics will alike want to spend some time in Piedras Negras. Although it is often seen as a gateway destination to Saltillo and the Mexican interior it offers plenty of reasons for visitors to stay a while and check out what it has to offer.
There are plenty of historical monuments and architecture dotted around, with the 18th century ruins of the San Bernadino Mission, the Caverns of de la Ventana and the Museum of Handicrafts proving very popular to most visitors.
The Mercado Municipal Zaragoza is the primary tourist market where you’ll find handmade goods and crafts from Piedras Negras’s artisans, known for their beautiful creations. Look out for silverware and ceramics, not to mention good-quality leatherwork.
Fairs and festivals are very much part of the annual calendar of events in Piedras Negras. The main one is La Feria del Sol (Festival of the Sun), which takes place in the second week of July, and in mid-October, as the birthplace of the much-loved snack, Piedras Negras hosts the two-day Nacho Festival.
Created by accident by a local chef, and now globally popular, you wouldn’t think the nacho’s humble beginnings only originated in 1940. The Festival is a feast of entertainment, including the Guinness Book of World Records contest for the biggest nacho in the world.
The Plaza de las Culturas (Cultural Plaza) pays its respects to the indigenous cultures of Mexico, including the Aztec, Mayan and Olmec, featuring replica pyramids and monuments representing the design of each culture.
There nearest international airports are at Piedras Nedras and Laredo in Mexico and San Antonio, Texas in the United States.
Take Highway 57 South, which brings you straight to Piedras Negras.
Piedras Negras International Airport: 5 miles (9 kms), 11 minsNuevo Laredo, Tamaulipas: 110 miles (177 kms) 2 hoursSaltillo: 292 miles (470 kms) 5 hoursTorreon: 377 miles (606 kms) 7 hours
For an appointment with one of our Piedras Negras dentists just call our toll-free number or book online.