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.

how crazy will it be?

Which Montezuma hotels are on sale?
mm/dd/yyyy mm/dd/yyyy
See hotels
nj
posts: 89
reviews: 3
how crazy will it be?

i'm back with more questions! we might as well get acquainted now..because i'm a little obsessed with ironing out details and i like to be informed.

i'm planning my vacay for the week of new years. (dec26-jan2) what can i expect from the highways and car ferry this time of year? will it be jammed up? if so..my flight comes in at noon..you think that will give me enough time to go through customs, pick up my rental car and make the trek to montezuma before sun down?

i know people have mentioned that a car is not necessary in montezuma, but the cabin i'd like to rent is up high on a hill. so, it is either car it from the airport..or shuttle it over and then rent a quad for the duration. if thats even possible... i heard quads are expensive, too.

any other tips you got for me? i'm getting super excited for this trip even though it is months and months away..

La Fortuna de San...
Destination Expert
for La Fortuna de San Carlos
posts: 1,178
reviews: 7
1. Re: how crazy will it be?

Here is a link to the ferry schedule: www.nicoyapeninsula.com/general/boat.php

You would be taking it from Puntarenas to Paquera. According to the current schedule you can make it there as they have a ferry departing as late as 8:30pm (be sure to recheck the schedule closer to your trip as it does change at times).

It is not likely that you will make it before dark, but you should get as far as Paquera before resuming in the dark. Take it slow and you should not have any problems. If you are uncomfortable driving in the dark and do not want to take chances, just stay at an airport hotel and go the next morning.

Santa Teresa, Costa...
Destination Expert
for Mal Pais, Santa Teresa
posts: 1,390
reviews: 10
2. Re: how crazy will it be?

You could catch a SANSA flight right from the airport and land in Tambor and rent a car there . Budget has a rental dealership about 10 min. from the Tambor airstrip. Then you can do the return flight and totally avoid the Christmas rush. The ferries are usually very busy and you will be right in the midst of the busiest time of the year! You are here for a short time, you may want to just fly to the peninsula and you will get to Montezuma much quicker.

nj
posts: 89
reviews: 3
3. Re: how crazy will it be?

thanks for the replies. my flight lands at noon, and i checked the local flight schedule to tambor, i think the last one left at 1:55pm. not sure if an hour and 55 mins will be enough for me to go through customs, get all my baggage in check and get on that flight. i've never flown before. :\

i'm still considering what would be the best option anyway...just rent a car, or rent a scooter/quad once in montezuma/cabuya.

San Jose, Costa Rica
posts: 3,527
4. Re: how crazy will it be?

One hour and 55 minutes for the local flight might be too tight or just enough time. It is a hard decision. The local airlines will not give you any refund if you are late and miss your flight.

Santa Teresa, Costa...
Destination Expert
for Mal Pais, Santa Teresa
posts: 1,390
reviews: 10
5. Re: how crazy will it be?

You have to check in at SANSA 45 min. before your flight. You may not make it through customs and immigration and pick up luggage and get over to the SANSA terminal, which is not in the same building as your arrival.

You might consider hiring a driver to take you to the ferry and walk on and pick up a cab on the Paquera side, or hire the driver to take you all the way to Montezuma and then rent a quad or car when you get there. This way, you are not driving in the dark and someone that knows the roads is getting you to your destination giving you a stress-free start to your vacation.

If your flight leaves SJO late in the afternoon, you could take a SANSA flight back, avoiding having to spend half the day driving. If your return flight is scheduled for the morning, you will have to think about spending your last night close to the airport. Flying is still the quickest route.

nj
posts: 89
reviews: 3
6. Re: how crazy will it be?

thank you everyone for your replies! i think at this point i might just rent a car. hey..call me crazy, but i've driven in plenty of places that i was unfamiliar with (new york city, philadelphia, west pennsylvania, knoxville, nashville,& all over nj)

and i've researched so now i know to expect plenty of dusty dirt roads, potholes, rivers, rickety bridges, lanes that just end, etc

i know it might be a little more expensive (maybe not, when you add up a weeks worth of taxis, shuttles and buses) but to me..the freedom to get up & go whenever i want and the experience will be priceless.

Pleasanton...
posts: 400
reviews: 7
7. Re: how crazy will it be?

6 years ago we took the flight to tambor and hired a taxi to take us to Montezuma. Once there, the town is so tiny everything is walking distance. We rented an ATV one day and explored the area. It was so much fun, but one day was plenty.

Everyone has their own preferences on car vs walking though!

Dearborn, Michigan
posts: 461
reviews: 9
8. Re: how crazy will it be?

I'm going to guess that going there on the 26th might not be too bad (but I still don't know if I'd chance it), but coming back on the second. You could easily wait for multiple ferries. Easter and Christmas is the worst for those ferries. When we headed back to SJO on easter eve, the people with cars waited through 3 ferrys (maybe more). We just drove on past and walked on.

You could RENT A CAR LOCAL: Tambor or Santa Teresa once you get there (and if you decided you really didn't need it, you could return it. But then again, during the holiday it might be hard to find a rental. But the major companies are there so you could MAKE RESERVATIONS.

I was there at Christmas 2010 (20th-30th) but I took shuttles, so it wasn't so much an issue. I do remember the (small) ferry being PACKED on the way back, but I don't really remember on there way there. Not as packed as Easter eve though.

If you're going to drive anyways, go back the 1st, not the second.

It's really had to explain the migratory patterns of the locals, but they all head to sea and most (non-retail / non-tourist) businesses close for the two weeks at Chistmas and if they don't head to the ocean the first week, they will the second. Sometimes they do things like at the beginning of the holiday they close down an expressway and make the lanes on both sides (east and west bound) go west bound for a few days and then do the same on the way back.

Gary

Gary

San Jose, Costa Rica
Destination Expert
for Costa Rica
posts: 39,161
9. Re: how crazy will it be?

Not crazy at all at arrival you have p`lenty time to drive to Puntarenas and take the ferry...

Just rent a small 4x4 and have fun ...a lot of nice places to visit around Montezuma...you will need a car...get one and hit the road!

roadadvsior

Edited: 12:03 am, May 24, 2012
nj
posts: 89
reviews: 3
10. Re: how crazy will it be?

despite your advice, gary, i'm gonna go ahead and leave the 2nd. I don't want to wake up new years day and do all the departure running around. i'll take the extra day of rest, even if it means more traffic.

i FINALLY booked a flight (after waiting when i probably shouldn't have) so now i have a new flight itinerary. i will be spending the night nearby SJO since my flight comes in late. This way I won't even have to worry about making a ferry before sundown, i will have all day.

on the way back, i will have to get to SJO in time for a 2:55pm take-off. If we leave around 7am, this should give us enough time, i hope.

oh..and i haven't booked it yet but i'm looking at going with Vamos 4x4. i'm loving how much extra you get (additional driver, cooler, map and even a gps). prices seem pretty good..

Edited: 1:27 pm, May 24, 2012