Driving in Costa Rica

Dec 17th, 2008, 06:44 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 23
Driving in Costa Rica

We are planning a trip to Costa Rica but I have a few questions about driving. First, is it safe to drive there? Are the roads safe? How long does it take to drive to and from the main sights? Is a lot of your trip spend driving?
michellegreer is offline  
Dec 17th, 2008, 07:49 AM
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Post this in the Latin America forum, this here is the US of A forum.
DalaiLlama is offline  
Dec 17th, 2008, 09:11 AM
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It takes a long time to drive between cities, usually several hours. Some of the roads are in great condition and some are full of potholes and pretty rough. We always hire a private driver through our hotels, so we can just relax and enjoy the view. Agree that you'll get more responses on the LA board.
volcanogirl is offline  
Dec 17th, 2008, 09:59 AM
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If you aren't familiar with the roads, you may be out of luck. There aren't many roads marked, on the xway, or otherwise. In San Jose you may see a sign or 2, but go further south, directions on the roads are slim and next to none. There are pot holes a plenty. In my view, the buses from San Jose are the best way to get around. Taxis are cheap, compared to the states, but be explicit where you want to go. Use them for short trips.
You can go from San Jose to Puerto Viejo, on the Caribbean Coast for the equivalent of 6 U.S. dollars. That's about a 3 1/2 hr. ride. Just be mindful of your luggage, and don't let it out of your sight, just like any place you travel.
bratsmom is offline  
Dec 17th, 2008, 10:19 AM
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michelle, you may also want to check out Interbus - it's really popular.
volcanogirl is offline  
Dec 17th, 2008, 12:53 PM
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I didn't find the driving that difficult, but it was very slow. Often as little as slow as 30 KPH (19 MPH).

Some routes require 4 wheel drive vehicles.

Keith is offline  
Dec 17th, 2008, 04:44 PM
Join Date: Oct 2007
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It really depends on where / what part(s) of CR you plan on visiting. If you fly into San Jose, you can be in Arenal / La Fortuna (volcano) or Manuel Antonio / Quepos (beach) in 3 hrs. However, drive time between Arenal & Quepos is approx 5-6 hrs. Though we used a driver, the roads between these areas are much better than I anticipated. However, the roads / highways are winding, two lane, and go through numerous samll towns. Thus, the distance might not be that far but it takes time.
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