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Transportation from Osa to Arenal and hotel in SJ

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Mar 3rd, 2014, 12:34 PM
  #1
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Transportation from Osa to Arenal and hotel in SJ

In early May, my husband and I will be going from Arenal after a few days in Osa (Bosque del Cabo).

I was thinking of flying Puerto Jimenez/SJ/La Fortuna but we would end up with a 7 am flight from Puerto Jimenez and a 3+ hour layover in the airpot. Now I am thinking that a 10:15 flight from Puerto Jimenez and car transportation (driver, not a rental car) to our hotel in Arenal might be better. Any advice on that? Is it a scenic drive? Also, any recommendations on hiring private transportation and perhaps a rough estimate of the cost would be really helpful. A shared van would be fine too if they leave at a time that works with our schedule. From my limited research so far though, it looks like they tend to leave later in the afternoon.

My second question is about lodging in San Jose. We get in late our first night in CR and then leave on a flight for Osa the next day. Any suggestions for a good hotel near the airport from which our SJ to Puerto Jimenez Nature flight leaves? It does not need to be upscale, just clean and convenient. If they have a shuttle to the airport, that would be great.

Thanks in advance for any suggestions. This board has been very helpful during our planning.
AnaBelen is offline  
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Mar 3rd, 2014, 06:51 PM
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I would fly from Puerto Jimenez to SJO and then have a private driver take you from SJO to the Arenal area. We always reserve our drivers through our hotels when we reserve them, and that's worked great for us. I can't remember the exact amount we paid on our last trip. I thought $180, and when I asked my husband he remembered $160, so that gives you a general idea. It's about a three hour drive. It's scenic but also hilly and twisty; I always take Dramamine.
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Mar 4th, 2014, 07:08 AM
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If you do a search on this site, you'll come up with numerous posting with lists and recommendations for private drivers. There are many who are often recommended on this site and $150-$180 would be the norm.

We've stayed a few times at Adventure Inn which has a free shuttle, great breakfast and is about 10-15 minutes from the airport. http://www.adventure-inn.com/

Last time we stayed in downtown Alajuela at Los Volcanes Hotel which also had a free taxi back to the airport. You would pay for a taxi to arrive there, but cost is minimal since it's very close. We were meeting Tico friends for dinner, so wanted to be downtown, but we also enjoyed staying in the historic home. http://hotellosvolcanes.com/

Ditto VG's advice on Dramamine - I live on it in CR!!
colibri is offline  
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Mar 4th, 2014, 07:54 AM
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Join Date: May 2007
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I forgot to mention Interbus since you said you wouldn't mind a shared van; you would just have to check their schedule and pickup spots.

The first time we went to Arenal, I didn't know to bring Dramamine. I had never gotten car sick in the U.S. but wow, I felt awful. The driver pulled out a little pill and said, "Here take this." I was so desperate that I did.

Regarding the prices, it would vary a little bit based on where you stay - places like the Lost Iguana or The Springs or AOL could be a little more since they're further out.

Carlos Bogarin is an excellent driver if you want a specific name recommendation. We've used him a couple of times.

http://destinos-encantados.com/ is the link.
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Mar 4th, 2014, 12:51 PM
  #5
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Thanks so much for the information. It sounds like it will be easy to set up a driver for that leg of our trip.

Also, thanks for the tip on dramamine. I do get carsick, so I appreciate knowing in advance to take something.

I took care of our flights to and from CR and our hotels (execept for the first night) quite a while ago. We will be going from Osa to Arenal to Monteverde. Now that our trip is only a couple of months away, I am starting to get excited! Time to break out those guide books again and start thinking about tours and activities.
AnaBelen is offline  
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Mar 4th, 2014, 01:01 PM
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Sounds like a great itinerary - where did you guys decide to stay?
volcanogirl is offline  
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Mar 4th, 2014, 01:06 PM
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We are staying at Bosque del Cabo (4 nights), Lost Iguana (3 nights), Hidden Canopy (3 nights), and Xandari (1 night).

The great posts here, especially yours, helped us decide.

I am going to go back through my information on tours and excusions over the next week or so. I may have some more questions for you...
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Mar 4th, 2014, 01:08 PM
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Just remembered I wanted to ask about flights. Is there any advantage to having the hotel book our flights to and from Osa on Nature Air. I was going to do it myself, but they offered. Does it makes any difference who does it?
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Mar 4th, 2014, 01:12 PM
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Ooh, you're going to a lot of my favorite spots. I'm happy to help with any tour questions. We had BdC book our flights for us when we went on Sansa. If I remember correctly, it was the same price for us either way.
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