We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Really need some advice

Which La Fortuna de San Carlos hotels are on sale?
mm/dd/yyyy mm/dd/yyyy
See hotels
Austin, Texas
posts: 44
reviews: 8
Really need some advice

We have decided that we will fly into San Jose on June 14 arriving around 11:30.

We will use a private transfer. My first question is if we arrive in San Jose at 11:30, would it be better for us to stay in San Jose or will we ba able to head to Arenal? On our way to Arenal, we would like to stop by La Paz and Paos on our way to Arenal. I would love it if someone would give me an idea of what a transfer for five people from San Jose to Arenal, stopping at those parks would cost? The last time we went, our driver personally took us around the parks. Is this the norm? It really made our trip more enjoyable and allowed us to notice things we would have missed if we did it ourselves.

Second, will the price of the transfer include admission in to the parks? If not, could someone give me an estimate on admission?

I would love to hear some recommendations on drivers!

Third-we have five in our family-three kids, age 18, 15, and 10. We really have a fairly tight budget. Which would the best economical, but nice hotel be and will we need to book two rooms?

My last question- we will be flying out of San Jose on the 21 of June. We would like to have a couple of days on the beach. We know it is quite a stretch to go from Arenal to the beach and back to San Jose-we are thinking about 3 nights at the beach, maybe 2. Would someone recommend a beach that is nice to swim and the kids would enjoy-with decent hotels? Also, maybe a good transfer from Arenal to that beach?

Thanks so much!!

San Jose, Costa Rica
Destination Expert
for Costa Rica
posts: 39,230
1. Re: Really need some advice

No problem at all to drive out of San Jose at that time of the day...you have to take in consideration that during that time...the weather can be wet...and rain most of the time during the afternoon,,,

You can drive by La Paz and get into the park they close around 4pm...again weather...the entrance fee is around $ 30.00 per person...most of the drivers will not include that in the fare!!

Trying to make it to Poas I believe and is a personal opinion is trying to do to much...not fun!!

The transfer price can be around $ 150.00 with stop at La Paz...(price as a reference NOT a quote)

In la paz you do not need a guide..if you like one they will offer one...the driver soemtime will like to go with you guys but is not a rule!!

In Arenal Silencio del Campo is a great location for a family...or Los Lagos...or Arenal Volcano Lodge...one that is a kind of modarate is El Sesteo...located in La Fortuna...nice little pool...

Maybe the beach place for you can be Manuel Antonio...nice park...easy to hike...Hotel Espadillas can be a good choice La Posada is another good alternative...about 5 hours drive from Arenal...and $ 165.00 for a private transfer (price as a reference NOT a quote)

And from Manuel Antonio back to San Jose...about 3 hours drive...$ 125.00 (price as a reference NOT a quote)

Luis Road Advisors

Just buckle up and enjoy the ride in paradise!!

posts: 1,932
reviews: 53
2. Re: Really need some advice

two great drivers:

willy:email: w_opciones@yahoo.com

leo: email: leratravelcr@yahoo.com

both speak perfect English and are wonderful

Atlanta, Georgia
posts: 102
reviews: 3
3. Re: Really need some advice

We paid the following for our transfer with private driver for reference:

San Jose to Arenal: $115

Arenal to Manuel Antonio: $185

Manuel Antonio to San Jose: $150

We took Willy Flores as mentioned above at


He was excellent. Whoever you use definitely stop at Orotina (on the way from Arenal to Manuel Antonio) and buy some different Costa Rican fruits that are difficult if not impossible to find in USA(

i.e. guanabana, mamones, mangas, and the biggest and best pineapples you have ever seen for $1 each.)


4. Re: Really need some advice

-:- Message from TripAdvisor staff -:-

This topic has been closed to new posts due to inactivity. We hope you'll join the conversation by posting to an open topic or starting a new one.

To review the TripAdvisor Forums Posting Guidelines, please follow this link: http://www.tripadvisor.com/pages/forums_posting_guidelines.html

We remove posts that do not follow our posting guidelines, and we reserve the right to remove any post for any reason.

Removed on: 5:20 am, September 25, 2009