What is your experience on driving to Osa ?

Old Aug 3rd, 2007, 03:52 AM
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What is your experience on driving to Osa ?

In early planning stage,we plan to go to Osa in June 2008.7 people.My question is- what 4W do we need and what car rental company we should use.And how bad are the roads?
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Old Aug 3rd, 2007, 04:42 AM
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My suggestion would be to catch a Nature Air or Sansa flight - very few people make this drive; it would be extremely long and difficult.
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Old Aug 3rd, 2007, 05:14 AM
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I asked the very same question about six months ago

http://fodors.com/forums/threadselec...6&tid=34917175

Our group did end up driving to the Osa in March so here are my thoughts prior to and after the adventure:

-Before the trip, we knew we'd be making a long drive over very difficult roads to Carate. I was nervous about it after I read extensively about it and saw pictures (I referenced the following for an idea of what it would be like - http://www.1-costaricalink.com/costa...sa_picture.htm)
However, going into the experience we prepared ourselves for two days (in & out) of long driving from Manuel Antonio and to San Jose.

- After the experience, I would say that I wouldn't hesitate to drive it in the dry season again. I can't speak to the rainy season as we weren't there then. Were the roads bad? Well, they were awfully beat up and included a bunch of stream crossings. Was it a long drive? Yes, but we were prepared for that going into it. Was it an experience? Certainly - and it was beautiful.

Be prepared to travel slowly and carefully b/c it really will tear up your car if you don't. After visiting the Osa, I look forward to going back. If I were to go again and had plenty of time to burn two days driving, I would probably attempt it again. However, if it were a short trip, I would probably opt for a flight to save time.

For our group of 4 adults w/ luggage, a Suzuki Grand Vitara XL7 was roomy enough. Hope this helps a bit with the planning - it was our first trip to CR and the Osa and it was loads of fun!
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Old Aug 3rd, 2007, 06:42 AM
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We started our drive to the Osa from San Isidro/Dominical/Uvita this June. From San Jose you could go down through Quepos and then towards Dominical where you can get on the Costanera sur. Q-D is rough. D to Palmar Norte-excellent. Palmar Norte winding but take your time and the paved road isn't bad.

As you have learned, the dry season is the best time to drive through there but we didn't have too much problem getting to Puerto Jimenez in June. They had done a lot of work on that road by the time we got there. We have seen it a lot worse. At Thanksgiving 2005 it was pretty bad driving to PJ but they had done a lot of work during the week we were there and it wasn't bad at all when we left. Puerto Jimenez to Cabo Matapalo (BdC) was the worst we had ever seen it this year. I thought we would never get there. We did a lot of bottoming out but minimized the damage by going very slow. We had had plenty of practice driving around in Ojochal by then. We had a Grand Vitara as well and it did fine even going through the streams.

I really enjoy that ride. It gets a little long after awhile but we always see neat birds. We generally stop at the restaurant by the Rincon bridge and do a little birding to stretch our legs. If we are hungry we stop at Las Ventanas a little before the bridge. Beautiful views of the Gulfo Dulce, food typical and okay. People nice.

As far as which company to use....we used Solid because they have an office in Puerto Jimenez so we only had the drop off in San Isidro to pay for. We flew back to San Jose from PJ. We saw a car after it ran off the road and down into a ditch that was an Alamo rental car that was being dropped off in PJ by an Alamo driver who had driven down from Quepos. That car didn't get where it needed to go. We picked the driver up and brought him someplace to call his office and then brought him back to the car. Don't know how but he didn't even have a scratch on him and the car was totaled we found out a few days later.

As volcanogirl said, few people make this trip because it can be difficult but we enjoy it. The Osa is my first love in Costa Rica as far as places to be. If it wasn't quite so hot we would have definitely bought down there. As it is we can get there pretty easily from where we did buy and we are closer to Dr's which is now a big consideration for us.

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Old Aug 3rd, 2007, 07:35 AM
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For any body that like cars and enjoy driving...it is a great trip...we have been driving around there for years...I visit my cousins farm by Drakes bay...and drive all over the place in many different directions...we have a group of friends and family and we drive our old 4x4 Toyotas...some times up to 5 of them,,,and we have the best time of our lives...it is possible for all kinds of 4x4...bigger the better in this case...
I also drive there sometimes my 4x4 KIA The Jungle Limo" for 2 tons of cargo...what a ride...and when my cousin was builduing his house we drove the even bigger a Friegthliner...6x6...that is the best ride of my life...sorry I can just keep going...I sound now like that lady that does not stop talking about her farm in San Isidro...sorry her lot!!

If is wet...get ready to do some serious pushing...and sometimes wait at the river side to the water to come down...is a lot a lot of fun!! Mosquitos...all over the place...at least with me...they just love me!!

Any rent a car..AVIS-ALAMO-HERTZ-TOYOTA

Please drive there...is just a dream...long, dusty, muddy...difficult...anything plus GREAT!!

If you need any help let me know...I will be very happy to help...

R.A Luis

Just buckle up and enjoy the ride in paradise.

Note: I am not a "proffesional Travel Agent" and I do not want to be one...I am just a costarican that adores his country...so do not worry I do not live out of commissions my help is free!!
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Old Aug 3rd, 2007, 08:56 AM
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I think a lot of it really depends on your comfort level. Just driving from Bosque del Cabo to Puerto Jimenez was an adventure - drive over several small streams, then big construction equipment in the way, then trees across the road where they were doing construction, then cows across the road. If it rains it could get really muddy. We didn't want to spend so much time on the road driving, but it sounds like you might be up for a little adventure. If you do it, please let us know what you thought.
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Old Aug 3rd, 2007, 03:26 PM
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Thank you all for your reply.This is what I was asking for and now I know I will be driving next June.Now I need to find house we would like rent down there.I think I will pick something from greatrentals.com
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Old Aug 3rd, 2007, 03:40 PM
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Haven't stayed here myself but have it on my short list next time I head to the Osa: http://www.encantalavida.com/ Also Casa Bambu gets good reviews here, you may do a search on it.
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Old Aug 3rd, 2007, 03:50 PM
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I think about this house.What do you think?http://www.greatrentals.com/Central-.../1/p137356.htm
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Old Aug 3rd, 2007, 05:42 PM
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I check the web for that house...looks nice and interesting..and the price is good...

R.A Luis
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