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Rental car advice - Montezuma

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Philadelphia...
posts: 13
reviews: 2
Rental car advice - Montezuma

Hello! I am traveling to Montezuma with my boyfriend next month. We are getting there via this bus/ferry/bus situation:

www.nicoyapeninsula.com/general/busses.php

After doing research, some places say you can find one for $60-70 a day. The quotes I'm getting are a bit higher than that.

I know that there is nowhere to rent a car in Montezuma...so what is the closest location with reasonable rates? Tambor? Is there somewhere along that bus route that we are taking where we can stop and rent one?

I don't want to have to rent a car, but we are staying at Montezuma heights, which is up a steep hill...so say the owners. Apparently it is crucial to have one. Objections to this idea are welcome.

Any help would be much appreciated. Thanks!

nj
posts: 94
reviews: 3
1. Re: Rental car advice - Montezuma

Hey! :) I will be staying at the same place over the xmas/new years holiday. I'll be sure to take as many pictures as I can and post my review.

My boyfriend and I opted to rent in Alajuela and make the drive over to the peninsula. I know that ATVs are big around the Montezuma area, so maybe you can get up that steep hill with one of those!

Dearborn, Michigan
posts: 461
reviews: 9
2. Re: Rental car advice - Montezuma

If you want to rent a car in Montezuma, whenever I've asked about it, it seems they bring them in from Santa Teresa (which is probably the closest), it seemed like a modest fee and I think that was just if I wanted it for a day. There are a few places that have car rental signs, but like I said they just call over to one of the agencies over there.

I'd guess Tambor would be the next closest place after Santa Teresa, I don't remember seeing a place in Cobano, but again, they probably just bring it to you. The hotel may have a recommendation for a car rental place. (They might even be able to arrange to have it delivered?)

It's a really steep hill there by the waterfall (I'm guessing that's where it is based on the photos of the coast) but I see tourists walk it often to get to some of the other places, but I'm not sure where Montezuma Heights is at...

Gary

Philadelphia...
posts: 31
reviews: 2
3. Re: Rental car advice - Montezuma

I just got back from Montezuma. That road is steep, but if you're planning to spend all your time in the vicinity of Montezuma then you could probably get by without a rental vehicle. It's easy to walk DOWN the hill into Montezuma and you can then catch a cab back up the hill for a few bucks when you need to go back to the hotel. There are several cabs that hang out in town or you can ask one of the tour offices to call one for you if there aren't any around for whatever reason. If you need a rental to travel further afield, then look into Zuma Tours. They have an office in Montezuma and a sign indicating an affiliation with Budget rentals.

Philadelphia...
posts: 13
reviews: 2
4. Re: Rental car advice - Montezuma

I think the furthest we would venture is Cabo Blanco - how do people get there without cars? Do they take a tour sort of thing?

I'm thinking that even if we take a cab 10 times in 3 days, we'll still be paying less than half of what a rental car costs.

How far of a walk is it to the waterfalls from the center of town/from the treacherous hill?

Edited: 8:43 pm, December 11, 2012
Dearborn, Michigan
posts: 461
reviews: 9
5. Re: Rental car advice - Montezuma

Short walk from waterfall parking lot (7-10 minutes?) to downtown. The waterfall parking lot is right at the bottom of the steep hill (you can park on the road, but for $2 you can park in this guy's lot and he keeps an eye on it).

FYI, when walking down the hill heading to town I've been offered rides so I'd have to assume walking up the hill you'd get offered rides too (I'm overly cautious I usually only hop in open jeeps or backs of pickup trucks).

There is a bus from the Montezuma bus stop to Cabo Blanco twice in the morning and twice back in the afternoon. It only takes you to the driveway to the park (so you're still 3/4 of a mile from the entrance). It's cheap for the ride ($1.50?). I think they have the times posted at the bus stop, I think when I went it was 8:20 am and 10:20 am to Cabo Blanco and I don't remember what times to come back. Don't miss the bus on the way back, you're far from anywhere and there isn't any cell service near there (cell service around Montezuma is great and the data speeds are quite high IMHO).

Just a reminder Cabo Blanco is closed Monday and Tuesday (most of the national parks are closed both days).

Gary

Philadelphia...
posts: 31
reviews: 2
6. Re: Rental car advice - Montezuma

If your hotel is where I think it is, then you can walk up the hill a short distance to the Butterfly Garden and pick up the trail behind the garden to get to the upper falls or you can walk down the hill and pick up the trail at the back of the parking lot Gary mentioned to hike in to the lower falls. Also, as Gary said, it's a very short walk into town from the parking lot so Montezuma should be easily walkable from your hotel.

As for traveling to Cabo Blanco, we took the bus in (no need to find a specific bus stop.... just wave at the driver and he'll stop for you anywhere along the road) and then we walked out of the forest into town, ate lunch, and then asked the local grocer to call us a cab to get back to our rental house (he seemed happy to do this). The staff at the park also asked if they could call us a cab so you might be able to ask them to call for you.

In general, it seems like you could easily get by without spending the money on a rental vehicle.

Dearborn, Michigan
posts: 461
reviews: 9
7. Re: Rental car advice - Montezuma

Cabo Blanco info:

It's beautiful there but VERY hilly. No climbing where you need your hands but it's VERY steep up and down (they've put in cement blocks). You only have two choices there: a 75-90 minutes loop or and 2+ hour walk to the beach (and 2 hours back). I think it's pretty rough but doable.

For comparison- I think the short loop at Cabo Blanco is much harder than climbing to the upper falls in Montezuma. Although you do need to use your hands for parts of getting to the upper falls. If you've done one of these, it'll give you some idea of the other.

Gary

Edmonton, Canada
posts: 324
reviews: 82
8. Re: Rental car advice - Montezuma

Earlier this month we stayed at the Mariposa guest house at the top of THE HILL. That incline is not one I would recommend walking down in the rain, after dark or up even at the best of times. We had a rental from San Jose so it was not an issue for us. Other guests rented quads at $50 per day and used them to explore the limited roads and trails in the area. I'd suggest this is a good alternative for a couple of days and, as suggested, use the local taxis the rest of the time.

Montezuma, Costa...
posts: 79
reviews: 3
9. Re: Rental car advice - Montezuma

Alamo or National Car Rental and other local car rental in the area have the small 4x4 Jinmy for $60 for $24 hrs rental with basic insurance, taxes and free mileage. This is way better than renting an ATV for 12 hrs as they are charging in town around $90 and more.

Also we still have gravel roads everywhere, full off dust during dry season and not too healthy if you are riding and ATV. I own ATVs I know the difference between riding ATVs or a vehicle, even a small one, on this dusty roads.

Edmonton, Canada
posts: 324
reviews: 82
10. Re: Rental car advice - Montezuma

.... I agree on the perils of using a quad for day to day use, especially in dusty conditions in a place you are not knowledgable about on public roads where there is little control. From what I could see there were plenty of inexperienced riders using equipment they were not familar with with impaired. There is not a hospital nearby and evacuation to one could be an expensive proposition.... the regional jailhouse might likewise be a place to avoid.

My suggestion was made as a possible alternative to SUV rentals which I imagine are hard to secure without a considerable advanced booking in this area in high season. $60 per day with insurance is not a bad price for a limited rental period ... just watch out for those below the field of vision tree branches and rocks in parking areas and out of control quadders. Getting an objective autobody repair estimate in Montezuma or finding touch up paint, might be a little difficult. The other challenge might be finding a parking spot within 1 km of the centre of town.

Edited: 2:37 pm, December 23, 2012