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captbuda40 Oct 30th, 2007 07:16 PM

Transportation through CR
I'm planning our first trip to CR. Is it best to rent a car (are roads easy to navigate and well posted) or use some other mode of transport? If car, any car rental recommendations and if other mode, any suggestions? We're planning on going from San Jose to Arenal, then on to Manuel Antonio in April.

shillmac Oct 30th, 2007 07:22 PM

All are simple routes with decent roads. The road to Arenal is very nice these days--and almost all the way to MA, with the exception of a couple of narrow bridges as you near the Quepos area.

If you aren't a timid or nervous driver, it does offer great flexibility for seeing and doing. Especially in the Arenal area, which is pretty strung out. I'd recommend Tricolor.

Their rates tend to be the best around and the price they quote will be all-inclusive, no hidden costs. You won't HAVE to have a 4 wheel drive on these particular roads, but the extra clearance never hurts anything! :) Expect to pay about $350 for a week's rental.

If you decide not to drive yourselves, you can easily transfer with Interbus.

You can also hire a private driver for $150 or so per transfer. I know nothing about this method, but others have their favorite drivers.

Enjoy--it's a beautiful country! You've chosen 2 very good destinations for first timers.

volcanogirl Oct 30th, 2007 07:51 PM

We booked drivers through our hotels and had really good luck with that; my husband wanted to relax and not worry about the driving. Lots of people do the drive themselves, but if you want to relax and enjoy the view, drivers are a good option.

dfr4848 Oct 31st, 2007 07:23 AM

We agonized over this as well and ended up renting car primarily becuase we wanted the flexibility. We used EuropCar and like them fine ($280 for a week and they upgraded us at check with no additional charge), but I've also seen recs for Tricolor as smillmac said.

We found the roads pretty good. They're easy to navigate BUT not well posted IMO. Don't count on signs marked with the highway number; follow signs to towns, hotels, etc and you'll be fine.

And yes, those one-way bridges around Quepos can produce some delays, but nothing significant.

volcanogirl Oct 31st, 2007 07:34 AM

If you do drive, I would be careful to arrive at your destinations before dark - sometimes things are not well-marked and difficult to find.

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