Transportation in Costa Rica

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When planning your Costa Rica vacation, how you are going to get from place to place can be a stressful aspect to plan. Transportation in Costa Rica is generally pretty easy to figure out, but some options are better than others. The type you choose can make or break your holiday. Luckily My Costa Rica is here to help! We have provided information on transportation service, including private transfer, shared shuttle, car rental and charter flights. 

Costa Rica is a wild animal when it comes to types of transportation, especially driving. People aren’t always the most courteous drivers but they can also be the most helpful in emergency situations. By far the best form of Transportation in Costa Rica is flying with any of the domestic flight services. Booking a domestic flight can potentially save you time, let you see Costa Rica destinations from above and take away the stress the comes along with ground transportation.

Public Transportation in Costa Rica

One form of transportation that is widely used is Costa Rica Public Transportation. For example, Busses, Taxi, Ferry’s, and Uber. Public transportation is widely used throughout the country. Most Ticos it because it is the least expensive and very convenient. Uber has taken off, people love the convenience, safety and affordability of the app. It is currently only available in the Central Valley. You can also take public buses and official taxis. 

Public transportation is a good way to get around the country if you are traveling on a budget. Public buses go to every major tourist destination. Keep in mind that you might have to take multiple buses and they won’t all be air conditioned. You might also find yourself crowded in with a few too many passengers. Bus drivers will occasionally let people stand and sit in the aisles. Generally speaking though, the public buses are clean and comfortable. 

Safety note–if you are taking taxis, make sure they are the official red taxis with the yellow triangle on the side. Double check that the taxi driver starts the meter (the “maria”) and pay attention to where you are going. 

What type of Transportation in Costa Rica should you use?

Flights to costa rica Westjet

International Flights

Costa Rica is coming up in the world you will find a direct flight from all over the place especially North America. We have included a list of all the direct flight and interactive map to help you enjoy planning your trip. 

nature air mountains and ocean view

Domestic Flights

Check out the list of Domestic flight within Costa Rica. Now flying to Nicaragua and Panama for your convenience. Use the Interactive Map to plan your perfect trip within the best country in the world. We will make sure you will have an awesome time.  Be aware that domestic flights usually have luggage restrictions. 

Transportation in Costa Rica, Motorcycles

Motorcycle Rental

Have you ever wanted to just set free and travel a whole country by motorcycle. Tour from one coast to the other and let the road take you all the way. Or maybe you want to try some off-roading adventure. Either way check ou this guide to renting a motorcycle in Costa Rica

car rentals costa rica beaches

Driving In Costa Rica

Driving in Costa Rica is really the way to go if you want to have the freedom of adventure and vacationing on your next visit here consider doing it by car.

Renting a Car in Costa Rica

Renting a Car

If renting a car in Costa Rica, make sure you’ve allowed yourself plenty of travel time between destinations. Even when it seems like a short distance on the map, not all roads in Costa Rica are in prime condition so make sure you allow yourself some extra time. Also clearly research where you need a 4×4!

private transfer drivers

Shuttle Services

Maybe renting a car is a bit too scary and you want to sit back and enjoy the ride. Shuttle transportation might be for you! Let a professional driver do all the work for you. Either go for a shared shuttle or a private shuttle. Costa Rica shuttles and private vans are a great way to have a stress-free trip to Costa Rica. 

How are the roads when I Visit Costa Rica?

If you do any driving in Costa Rica, you will almost certainly do some traveling on the Pan-American Highway. This is the main artery of Costa Rican travel and is heavily used. The road is winding and somewhat dangerous in parts. However, the main highways are constantly improving in quality and in general are not unpleasant to drive. The roads to the more famous beaches and popular destinations are well kept, but there can be large potholes you should watch out for. 

Roads to more remote locations (Osa Peninsula, Drake Bay, Dominical, Monteverde) can be the poor shape and in some cases may require four-wheel drive vehicle. Driving times can vary widely depending on traffic and road conditions. Also, the drives to Puntarenas, Jaco, Quepos, Playas del Coco and Puerto Viejo from San Jose are, in our opinion, among the most pleasant and easiest to manage.

What are the driving times between destinations?

It is tough to estimate accurate driving times as road conditions, traffic, time of day, and weather greatly affect how long it can take. The roads to popular tourist destinations tend to have a lot of traffic, especially on the weekends. These are very rough estimates. Also, typically one can average around 65-75 kilometers per hour on highways and 30-50 km on side roads. Be careful to allow yourself enough time between destinations. Transportation in Costa Rica is much more fun if you are not in a hurry.

1.San Jose to Manuel Antonio: 3.75 hours
2.San Jose to Arenal: 4 hours 
3.San Jose to Tamarindo: 5 hours 
4.San Jose to Puerto Viejo: 3.75 hours 
5.San Jose to Monteverde: 5 hours 
6.San Jose to Jaco: 2 hours 
7.San Jose to Golfito: 8 hours

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