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driving time from MA to Arenal

northern california
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217 posts
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driving time from MA to Arenal

I am travelling with my daughter. We will leave MA on Saturday June 7th to drive to Arenal. About how many hours will it take in our rental car? Will there be places to stop along the way for lunch, snacks, and bathroom breaks? I have never driven in Costa Rica before. i have a National Geographic map and we will have a GPS.

Thanks, Deb

wgr
Vancouver, BC
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1. Re: driving time from MA to Arenal

You might check other threads on this issue but the time is about 5 hours from MA to La Fortuna. Always depends on the traffic and how long you get stuck in a convoy with large lorries going up to the highlands from the coast.

You also can get a bit lost because of signage as you go from the Quepos-Punta Arenas (#23) onto #1 adn in and around San Ramon where you turn off to go to La Fortuna. But you will have a GPS and that should not be a problem.

Absolutely no shortage of places to eat. Cleaner that most places in the US or Canada; very tasty food. Sodas are a bit more informal than restaurants with a plate of the day but overall the difference between the two is subtle. We found we went with places that had other traffic particularly truckers who would have a good sense of where was good.

With regard to bathrooms, again plentiful and clean, often places advertise their bathrooms and Ticos are less fussed than American or Canadian businesses about using their facilities.

Ann Arbor, MI
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2. Re: driving time from MA to Arenal

It will take 4-5 hours; you can assume about 1 km/hr. I would suggest getting an early start as later in the day you can get stuck behind the big trucks carrying harvested sugar cane, etc., and they are very difficult to pass on winding mountain roads.

The GPS will be invaluable; I was appalled by how poor the signage was. I actually had a private driver and thought it was worth every penny, because I could never have figured out where to go on my own. Nonetheless, if you pay attention to the GPS, watch your map, and look for signs for hotels to mark where you are (the towns are sometimes not clearly marked, so you can only tell where you are by the hotel), you should be fine.

There are plenty of places to use the bathroom; even the gas station restrooms are fine.

I would caution you never to leave your car unattended, as there are many reports of break ins to rental cars (which are readily identifiable on the road).

Good luck! It's a beautiful drive!

northern california
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3. Re: driving time from MA to Arenal

Thank you. I am thinking we will have a driver so I can enjoy the ride.

Thanks, Deb

4. Re: driving time from MA to Arenal

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