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Driving to Drake Bay

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posts: 32
reviews: 63
Driving to Drake Bay

I have read every post to make sure I'm not repeating something that has already discussed,but I still have questions. We will be in Drake Bay the end of January. We will be coming from San Geraldo de Dota and driving a small SUV rental. Should we drive or take the boat from Sierpe?

If you advise leaving from Sierpe, is there somewhere safe to leave the car?


San Jose, Costa Rica
posts: 42,400
1. Re: Driving to Drake Bay

Som places to park the car in Sierpe...

I drive to Drakes a lot to see my farm...and every time I go I have to ask once around there how the road is...I advice you to the same...in Januray good chances that will be ok to drive all the way!


Destination Expert
for Bermuda
posts: 2,725
reviews: 26
2. Re: Driving to Drake Bay

i've driven there in a terios (small suv) around that time of year. there are a few small streams to cross but one river in particular you have to be careful. as luis says, ask a local before you leave for drake. if yo get word it's okay to cross, you should wait for a local to drive across to find the best path. if you are good at judging water depth then give it a go but keep in mind your insurance does not cover damage incurred by crossing rivers.

Brooklyn, New York
Destination Expert
for Sarapiqui
posts: 4,058
reviews: 80
3. Re: Driving to Drake Bay

I would leave the vehicle in Sierpe. Nowhere to drive to in Drake Bay once you get there, and the boat ride from Sierpe is supposed to be a highlight.

posts: 32
reviews: 63
4. Re: Driving to Drake Bay

Thanks everyone. I think we'll be leaving the car in Sierpe. Any ideas where to leave so it will be safe?

La Fortuna de San...
Destination Expert
for La Fortuna de San Carlos
posts: 1,200
reviews: 7
5. Re: Driving to Drake Bay

You can go to the Las Vegas Restaurant, which is actually where the boat dock is as well. They have an offsite fenced in parking area. Alternatively, you can save a little money by parking at Cabinas Margarita, but it is not fenced in.

San Jose, Costa Rica
posts: 3,527
6. Re: Driving to Drake Bay

Great suggestions by ExploringCA I would go with the fenced in parking area. I would not drive to Drake Bay crossing rivers, remember you are responsible for any damage to the car rental. Have a great trip!

posts: 32
reviews: 63
7. Re: Driving to Drake Bay

Thanks again. You've made it possible for me to make an informed choice here. So very grateful for the help.

San Francisco...
posts: 9
8. Re: Driving to Drake Bay

You can park your car at Las Vegas Restaurant Dock" also known as "La Perla Del Sur" . You can easily find the Las Vegas Restaurant in the center of Sierpe right next to the central park. The owners are Jorge & Blanca and their number is 2788-1082. They have a secure lot about 2 blocks away where you can park your car (cost is $ 6.00 per day) you can then relax and enjoy a snack or a cold beverage while you wait for your hotels boat to pick you up.

Kitchener, Canada
posts: 435
reviews: 105
9. Re: Driving to Drake Bay

there is a few places to park in sierpe, and the boat ride is cool, but I really enjoyed the drive. I took the little car ferry in sierpe across the river and took the roads from there. I had a good gps tho, and I too went in January, the dry season so the small streams were easy to cross. the roads were ok, and part of the fun. I liked having my vehicle with me, I knew it was safe then, and it gave me freedom of movement. I also had the option then of not going back to sierpe, and instead going a different way out and seeing new things. def ask local about the road tho. you just never know...

Edmonton, Canada
posts: 337
reviews: 83
10. Re: Driving to Drake Bay

We drove from Sierpa to to Drake Bay in under three hours complete with photo stops after crossing on the small car ferry in Sierpa. The road is steep, curvy and rough at points. We only used the 4x4 to cross the river 4 kms outside of Drake Bay and that was a precautionary, rather than necessary measure. Our rented Bego was about smallest and most basic 4x4 available in CR. We drove back to San Jose via Chacarita, the coastal highway and San Isidro over the space of a few days with a road time of 7 to 8 hours. The vehicle had a manual transmission and with this, was adequately powered. The clearance and suspension was more than a match for the road conditions we encountered. Range on 50 liters of fuel was 500 kms regardless of driving conditions.

You can park in Sierpa and take the boat ride and see some interesting things, but you will miss the spectacular views afforded travelers on the Sierpa Rincon road as well as the adventure. You will also see some of this on boat tours out of Drake Bay. Driving by road also lets you see more of how locals manage and understand a little of what is behind the Pura Vida tourist curtain.