Itin help - SJO to Osa to Arenal to SJO

Apr 5th, 2010, 09:04 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Apr 2010
Posts: 3
Itin help - SJO to Osa to Arenal to SJO

I'm new to posting on Fodors! We're taking our first trip to Costa Rica in August and trying to plan out some details and need some help.

We're flying into SJO, arriving mid-day, then flying to Pt. Jiminez . Flights to Pt. Jiminez are early, so I'm looking for any advice on a hotel ~$75-100 per room that can help us arrange a (free?) shuttle from SJO and to Pavas(?) for our NatureAir flight? I like the idea of staying at BnBs or locally owned places, esp. on our first night, but we also need to be on a budget

We're at Pt. Jiminez for 5 nights (about 4.5 days, really) with some activities and some down-time on the beach. Then we're flying from Pt. Jiminez to Arenal, arriving around noon. Any advice on staying there 2.5 days vs. 3.5 days? We want to do one of the ziplines, maybe SkyTrek and a tour, to maximize transport. costs on one day.

Finally, I really need some advice on our departure. The latest flight we can get out of SJO departs 2:50. We'd like to depart Arenal in the morning and get on an afternoon flight on the same day. If we can't, we'll have to cut a day at Arenal. Are we crazy to try to get from Arenal to SJO to catch a flight? Should we hire a driver for 4 people, or take one of the private bus lines? I'm thinking that it might be worth our while here to hire a driver, so we can get directly to the airport, but I'm not sure if we can afford that vs. taking a bus.

Thanks in advance for all your help! I have so many questions and I'm really excited about planning our trip
IL214 is offline  
Apr 5th, 2010, 09:43 AM
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 228
Why don't you do it reversed. You won't be able to fly to PJ, but you can get a driver to bring you to Arenal after your flight. Then fly from Arenal to PJ, and PJ to SJO. You won't have to spend an extra day that way.
bd is offline  
Apr 5th, 2010, 09:57 AM
Join Date: May 2007
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Arenal to SJO via private driver will cost you around $140 if that helps you determine costs.
volcanogirl is offline  
Apr 5th, 2010, 10:06 AM
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We can't find any flights from Arenal --> PJ during low season, but we can find flights from PJ --> Arenal - - our original plan was to go to Arenal first, as you suggest.

I thought I read that buses end up being about $40pp, so for 4 of us, it sounds like getting a private driver would be just as economical and maybe more convenient. How long is the drive from Arenal to SJO?

Thanks for your responses!
IL214 is offline  
Apr 5th, 2010, 11:17 AM
Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 3,750
Have you tried calling the airline? I've found that sometimes those flights with stopovers don't show on the website. Most recently I was booking Tambor to Drake Bay and on-line it looked as if I would have to book each leg separately, thus incurring a $20 fee for each leg. However, when I called, I was able to book Tambor to Drake and pay the $20 fee once, even though the plane stops twice.
hipvirgochick is offline  
Apr 5th, 2010, 02:00 PM
Join Date: May 2007
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Arenal to SJO is around three hours or so.
volcanogirl is offline  
Apr 5th, 2010, 02:30 PM
Join Date: Apr 2004
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Looks like a mis-connect on Nature Air. The La Fortuna flight gets into Pavas too late to catch the flight to PJ. Only work around for that would be to drive from Arenal to Pavas early to catch the flight.

I think you'll be fine leaving Arenal the day of your flight if it's leaves around 3pm, just leave by 9am or maybe 830am, to give you a little extra time for traffic/delays.
tully is offline  
Apr 12th, 2010, 07:09 PM
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Thanks for all your help! I'm so excited that we're going to get to see both the Osa and Arenal!
IL214 is offline  
Apr 13th, 2010, 03:54 AM
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 23,878
Those are two of our favorite spots. I think you've love it.
volcanogirl is offline  
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