Drive or Fly to Santa Theresa

Nov 25th, 2003, 07:09 PM
  #1  
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Drive or Fly to Santa Theresa

Hi,

I have lots of car/driving questions. Hope that someone can help.

What is the drive like from San Jose to Santa Theresa? How long does it take and what is the ferry crossing like (could one get sea sick?)?

We arrive in San Jose at 2pm. Would that give us enough time to drive Santa Theresa?

Is it a scenic drive? Would it make our stay in Santa Theresa more fun to have a car?

Thank You,
Gem

sparklegem is offline  
Nov 26th, 2003, 05:59 AM
  #2  
 
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I think you should drive and yes, a car would make Santa Teresa better, as it's small but spread out. Many of the restaurants would be a fairly long walk in hot humid conditions from Tropico Latino Hotel.
However, if you don't arrive in San Jose until 2:00pm, you should not try to make the drive that day. Considering you will have to go through customs and get luggage then the car, there would be no way to get to Santa Teresa until way after dark...and you should NOT drive in Costa Rica after dark, unless you're just going out for dinner or fairly short distances.
If I can recall, we left Santa Teresa about 8:00am and did not get back to San Jose until around 2:00. Part of that was having to wait for the ferry. Figure about 5-6 hours from San Jose to Santa Teresa, but it's an excellent way to see the country and it's very senic. The ferry on that route is very big and while the crossing is slow, it's also lovely. The ferry actually goes between land masses so there is no 'wave' action and getting seasick is highly unlikely.
Ally is offline  
Nov 26th, 2003, 06:46 AM
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Hi Ally,

You are so great to answer all of my questions. I really appreciate it!

If we arrive at 2pm in San Jose and decide to rent a car is there a scenic (or nice) place to stay that would be a little bit on the way to Santa Theresa? Also, our flight out of San Jose leaves at 3pm, would we need to spend the night some where on the way back to San Jose? It is looking like to rent a car we would need to add two extra days (lose two days at the beach). Would it still be worth it? Scooters might be sounding better.. ?

Thank You,
Gem

P.S. We have had to change our Santa Theresa lodging to the Milarepa. Have you heard anything about it?
sparklegem is offline  
Nov 26th, 2003, 07:47 AM
  #4  
 
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We LOVE the Orquideas Inn in Alajuela. Have stayed the last 6 trips and will be staying there again in May! They have nice rooms (get the new ones on the hill), a cute pool, a fun bar, nice views, fantastic gardens, and the best, FULL breakfast buffet is included in the price of the room. An excellent way to start the day! VERY nice people too. They do not have phones or TV's in the rooms, but there is a TV in the common 'livingroom'. There are a couple places to stay that I think are on/near the highway out of town on the way to Santa Teresa, one is Xandari and the other is Vista Del Valle. Both are further from the airport than Orquideas Inn...about 20-30 minutes. (The orguideas is 10-15 minutes) These two are much more expensive and don't include the free huge breakfast, but many people seem to love them. For the price, I'm sure they are nice!

I think you will be happy with Milarepa, as it's supposed to be one of the nicest hotels in the whole area. I would have stayed there had our budget allowed!

Yes, it's a good idea to stay near the airport on your first and last days. Especially since you don't arrive until 2:00 and depart at 3:00. You WILL need to be at the airport 2 hours before departure, so you would not have time to drive from Santa Teresa to the airport that day. Not to say that it can't be done, but you'd have to leave very early in the morning, hope that you make the first ferry, etc. I don't even know when the first ferry is, but the whole day would be very stressful!
I suggest you drive back to Alajuela the day before you leave. After a nice big breakfast, you can take a side trip to Sarchi, an easy 30 minute drive from the Orquideas, for last minute shopping. GREAT place to pick up souvenirs! Or, you could go to the zoo or butterfly farm, then drop the car off on the way back to the airport.
By the way, there are rental companies that will drop off and deliver rental cars to the Orquideas Inn, which is nice. We usually take a taxi (about $9 US) from Airport to Orquideas Inn, then have them arrange to have a car dropped off first thing the next morning. Then after returing from the beach, we drive back to the Orquideas and have the rental company pick up the car. The Orquideas can take you to the airport for the same $9 a cab will cost. Just a suggestion!
Ally is offline  
Nov 26th, 2003, 09:43 AM
  #5  
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Thank you, Ally!
sparklegem is offline  
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